Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Our Six Kids

7 lbs. 12 oz.
20 inches

Last night David and I hung out in the parking lot of the hospital. I just felt funny. My back had a tingly sensation and I felt like my water was about to burst. At about 10:00pm I made the executive decision to go home and attempt to get a good night rest in our comfortable bed before my scheduled induction at 6:30am.

I slept as good as a nine month pregnant woman can. I awoke a few times with a full bladder, but no contractions. At 3:16am I awoke with a long, painful contraction. It was only one contraction, but I felt prompted to nudge David and tell him to wake up and get ready. We were planning to get up at 5:30am anyway, so I thought it wouldn't hurt for us to be a couple of hours ahead of schedule.

He took a shower while I folded some laundry. I didn't have any more contractions. When he was through with his shower, I took my shower and David rested some more. I debated whether or not to wash my hair and decided I wanted to look my best on delivery day so it got washed. I still felt fine when I finished my shower, however, when I began to blow dry my hair, I felt a tinge of pain in the uterus. I noted the time was 3:50am. I continued to dry my hair and felt another one. The time was 3:53am. I continued my beauty routine through a few more contractions. I was not going to leave the house with my hair not finished. Finally, I got my hair completely dry shortly after 4:00am. By then I was kneeling on the floor smoothing the stray hairs, trying to avoid gravity doing its work. Pleased with my appearance, make-up and all, I said, "David, let's get out of here!"

We went downstairs, woke my mom to tell her we were leaving, grabbed a couple of bananas and granola bars and got in the car. I called the doctor's answering service and spoke with the doctor-on-call. I warned her that my babies have a tendency to come quickly. I calmy endured approximately 3-4 contractions during our 15 minute drive to the hospital. David dropped me off at the emergency room and I knocked on the plexiglass window trying to get the attention of the gabbing gals of our town's rather uneventful ER. The security guard/ wheelchair driver had to go get the woman. At that point, David came running in and the woman said she needed my ID and insurance card. I said, "You better get me up to the maternity floor before this baby is born right here." Then David pointed to the entrance of the ER and said, "We had a baby born right there." So the wheelchair driver quickly got me up to the floor while David stayed to give my info. I wasn't real comfortable leaving David behind and I asked the man if he had ever delivered a baby before. We arrived to the floor and they got me a room at the end of the hall. I was relieved to at least be in a room, with a staff of experienced professionals close at hand. David arrived and I got on my gown. A nurse examined me and I was dilated 8 cm. They did the whole IV thing and asked me questions while I took pauses to breathe during contractions. It was about 5am when the doctor arrived. She predicted it wouldn't be long before the baby would arrive.

I didn't like when the nurses left the room so I pressed the nurse's button everytime I had a contraction. Finally I asked them to stay and put the stirrups up. I didn't want to have another incident like when Emily was born when David had to go in the hall and call for the nurses and they didn't come until they heard me screaming due to a crowning head. So they stayed with me from about 5:15am until the time of birth at 5:45am. At about 5:35 am they had me begin pushing. I pushed. She said it would probably take a couple more pushes. Another contraction began and I gave it my all. I had never pushed so hard to get a baby out. My other babies, especially Wendy and Jason, just slipped right out without any effort. But I pushed and I got her out. She was here and was a whoppin 7 lbs. 12 oz - about a pound heavier than we were all estimating.

Rachel was an OP (Occiput Posterior) birth which means that she came out "sunny side up" or "face to pubes." OP births also typically involve longer and more painful labors. However, despite the increased pain and increased pushing it took to get her out, her positioning turned out to be a blessing. The doctor said that we may not have made it to the hospital if she had been positioned normally. But no more OP babies, please!

So all went well. It was a nice time of day to have a baby. I prefer to have a baby when the doctor does not have office hours. My own doctor has yet to deliver one of my children. He missed the birth by 1 hour and 15 minutes. Perhaps he will deliver our grand finale. I am pleased to know that Rachel has a natural birthday, no induction required.

4:43am: Only one more hour of looking like a whale. I'm a little disappointed I didn't get a better belly shot before changing into my gown. I just didn't know how much time we had to spare. I can't believe how huge I look!

6:08am: The hair got a little messed up, but I think it looks pretty good.

12:09pm: We celebrated with Dunkin' Donuts.

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