My mom arrived on Friday (12/25) to be here for Oliver’s arrival. It definitely took away some anxiety I’d been having because I didn’t have to worry about getting someone to the house super quickly with Aiden if I went into labor. Andrew and I were able to easily get some time alone together over the weekend, out to eat and running errands. It was really nice. We ended up going out to Daniel’s for dinner on Sunday for a kind of “last date night” (we almost made reservations for Monday, good thing we didn’t). After dinner we ran to the grocery for a few last minute items, like gum for the hospital bag. We went home and watched some Netflix before going to bed around midnight. At 1:30am Sunday morning I woke up (thinking I might be hearing Aiden) to hear my mom getting up for something. Once I realized no toddler would be crawling into my bed I rolled over to go back to sleep only to have a kicking, squirmy baby keeping me awake. Then at 1:45am, without any doubt, I had my first contraction. It was the lower crampy-like contractions of real labor (not the familiar braxton-hicks I’d been having for months). I laid in bed and timed 3 of them 12 minutes apart before deciding to wake up Andrew. Because of my first labor only being 7 hours, we were anticipating this one being about 3. We got up right away and called the midwife, Kim. Andrew asked if I wanted to watch some TV and time contractions a little longer, but we decided to go ahead and get ready to leave for the hospital. I texted my mom at 2:45am to let her know real labor was happening so she got up as well. While her and I hung out in the living room Andrew put our stuff in the car. At that point contractions were 7 minutes apart. Andrew called Kim again, and we decided this WAS moving fast and that we should head to the hospital. During our 15 minute drive, contractions went to 4 minutes apart. Sitting in the car through contractions was extremely uncomfortable, not being able to move or stand through them seemed to go against my instincts. We got checked into the hospital and went to triage where they monitored my contractions for a little bit. I only overheard from the nurse that they were a “few” minutes apart now. During this time Andrew was using the Double Hip Squeeze to help me through contractions. I just remember saying “thank you thank you thank you…” until they passed. It helped relieve the intensity of the back labor I was feeling. Kim arrived about 15 minutes after us. She checked my progress which was 7cm, my water broke, and we headed to our room. This is exactly what happened when I arrived at the hospital for Aiden’s birth (7cm, water broke, went to my room). I was surprised at how similarly things went this time around. Once in my room Kim asked if I wanted to try the bath, and I decided standing with my lower back under the hot shower would be good. Kim told me to do what I felt I needed to do and she would make it work, we’d have a baby in the shower if that’s what happened. At this point I started to feel like labor actually slowed down. I looked at the clock and it was exactly 4am. I had several more contractions but felt like I had more time to recover in between. When I looked at the clock again it was only 4:05am. Labor was not slowing down. I think I just felt more relaxed after getting to our room and being where I needed to be. When I pointed out to Andrew how only 5 minutes had gone by, he told me not to look at the clock any more. I also think this is when Kim told me we would have a baby by 5am (When we left the house my mom asked when I guessed he my be born and I told her “maybe by 7am.” How wrong I was, ha!). Time became a blur. A lot happened in the next 45 minutes. I was ready to get out of the shower and labor some place more comfortable. I got heated blankets wrapped over me and they raised the bed up so that I could just lean on it and continue to labor standing which felt more comfortable for me than laying. It wasn’t long before I began feeling the start of pushing contractions. I think these came with a lot of “oh no, pushing is happening” comments from me (I remembered what was coming). I felt very unfocused during these and some panic. Andrew’s voice stuck out of everything happening, saying “stay with me, you’re doing great”. I had one extremely strong pushing contraction standing and immediately told Andrew and Kim I couldn’t hold myself up through another one. All of my energy and control could only be focused on one thing. Kim had me move to the birthing stool with Andrew sitting on the bed behind me so I could lean back against him and use his legs as arm rests. This also gave me the ability to grab both his hands and squeeze the living daylights out of them. I thought they must be breaking but I couldn’t help it. From this point it took 3 pushes (what felt like 3 very long pushes). There was a mix of voices talking to me and encouraging me along but I had absolutely no focus and felt no control over labor any more. All I could do was disagree with what they were telling me and say exactly what was in my head… I can’t, I don’t want to, this awful, don’t make me do this, etc. On the second push I could tell he wasn’t coming out so I told them to “put him back, put him back, put him back!” On the third push Kim said this was going to be it so I yelled “pull him out, pull him out, pull him out!” It all felt chaotic to me at the end until at 4:44am Kim handed me an 8lb 2oz little boy (21 in). I instantly felt completely fine and said “hello very blue baby”. Oliver was here! I stood up with him and got into bed. After a few minutes Andrew cut the cord and Oliver spent the next 2 hours nursing some and laying with either Andrew or I. I changed into my own clothes and the nurse came in to do all the stats and newborn testing. After labor I ended up with excessive bleeding because my uterus wasn’t contracting enough, but after two doses of meds that was under control. Because labor went so quickly we didn’t have time to let our families know ahead of time, so we started to get the news out around 5:30am. Andrew napped later that morning once Oliver was asleep and my mom and Aiden headed to the hospital. They visited us around 10am and headed home for nap. Then they came back for an evening visit which is when my mom and Aiden both held Oliver.
Oliver Karas Hampton made is debut Monday, December 28th 2015 at 4:45am
(you can read the whole story at the bottom if you’re interested in details).