Clyde's Birth Story - Part One

Usually I just post the entire birth story in one post, because I feel bad splitting it up and making you all wait - but for some reason Clyde's story ended up being realy long, so I'm making this two posts instead of one!

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Before I dive into Clyde's birth story, let's go over a few surrounding details, shall we?

As most of you know, Derek has to travel a lot for his job.  Throughout my pregnancy we were pretty stressed out about this, because we knew he was scheduled to be traveling 5+ hours away during the last few weeks of my pregnancy - and my entire labor with Gwen was 5.5 hours!  I was so afraid that if he was gone when I went into labor he wouldn't make it in time for the birth.  We tried talking to his bosses about working from home for a week or two, but they said it just wasn't possible, and we felt stuck.

In the last month one of the clients Derek had to work with rescheduled (thank you Lord!), and we knew he would only be a couple hours away during week 38 of my pregnancy (instead of the original 7 hours away).  I was so hoping to go into labor before the end of that week.  If he didn't come by 39 weeks, Derek would 5 hours away the week before my due date.

By the time I hit 38 weeks I was pretty stressed about going into labor before Derek had to be gone again, and I was trying all my tricks - walking, eating spicy food, etc.  I thought it might have worked on April 7th when I started having contractions - I called Derek and my mom and they rushed home. But the contractions didn't get any stronger, and they were gone four hours later.  It was so discouraging.  Derek and I just kept praying that the Lord would let the baby come before he had to be gone, and that he wouldn't miss the birth.

On Thursday, April 10th, I decided to take the kids down to the mall and walk around a little bit.  Wyatt and Gwen are such good little shopping buddies - they love riding around in our double stroller, and I thought the pushing and walking would surely do some good.  So we walked and shopped, and I bought Wyatt and me a chai latte to drink at this little shop in the mall (well, actually mostly for me, but I let Wyatt have sips).

Right as we sat down to drink it, I got a text from my friend, Danae, saying that she felt like she should be praying for me right then, so that was what she was doing.  I thought that was so sweet, though I was so wishing I could have told her that I was in labor at that moment!  It meant a lot to me though.  We finished our latte, walked a little more, then packed up and went home.

My mom came over later that night - she had stayed with me a couple nights that week since Derek was gone, and the plan was for her to be there on Thursday night since I had to go to work the next day.  I was feeling bummed, because the whole week I was hoping to not be going to work that Friday - I was hoping to be taking care of a new baby instead!  But I had resigned myself to it.

That evening, a couple things happened.  First I got a phone call from Derek - he had received an e-mail from one of his bosses saying that they decided to have him work from home the next week, instead of traveling 5 hours away!  To say I was thrilled was an understatement!  It was a huge "PTL" (Praise The Lord!) as we used to call it!  I was so thankful that the Lord had worked out that detail for us, and that I wouldn't have to stress anymore about going into labor by a certain date.  It was a huge relief.

The other thing that happened was that Wyatt threw up.  It was so sad.  I rushed him to the bathroom and leaned him over the toilet, and he was whimpering. It broke my heart.  Later he told Derek what happened over the phone - he said he "had oatmeal in his tummy" (it wasn't really oatmeal), and that he "dumped it in the toilet".  It was so cute to hear him describe the incident in his own words - he is growing up so much.

After he threw up he still wasn't feeling well, and I knew I didn't want to leave him the next morning if he was still sick.  Then I started feeling a little nauseous myself, so I decided to call work and tell them I wouldn't be in the next day.  It's a good thing I did, because Wyatt threw up again that night, and my nausea got worse and worse until I was throwing up too. I also had stomach cramps and other unpleasant symptoms.  It was a pretty miserable night.  

I thought that the chai latte we drank must have had spoiled milk or something. It was the only thing that both Wyatt and I had eaten that day.  I remembered Danae's text and wondered if this was why she was supposed to pray for me.

We made it through the night, and Wyatt seemed much better - I, on the other hand, was still feeling pretty awful by morning.  I was still having stomach cramps and felt like throwing up - I couldn't even think about eating breakfast, so my mom bought me a Slim Fast drink and crushed ice from the gas station instead.  I could only get half the Slim Fast drink down.  It was not fun.

I had a doctor's appointment that day.  We decided to head over to my mom's house and hang out there for a little bit in the morning.  My sister was coming over too, and the plan was for us all to head down for my doctor's appointment later that afternoon.  I wanted Wyatt to come to the doctor's appointment with me if it was going to be my last one, because he always got so excited to "listen to the new baby" through the doppler.

I pretty much parked myself on the couch at my mom's house and nursed my cup of ice while the kids played and watched Milo and Otis.  I was not feeling good at all.

My sister gave me weird looks, and I heard her talking to my mom about how she didn't think that I was still feeling bad because of the drink - she thought the nausea and cramps might be early labor.  I brushed her off, because I was pretty sure it was just the bad latte.  The cramps just felt like cramps, not contractions.

But that all changed pretty quickly.

Right around 11:30 I had a "cramp", but it definitely felt like a contraction.  I looked at the clock and waited, and a few minutes later I had another cramp that felt like a contraction.  My mom and sister were getting things ready for us to go, and the cramps kept getting more contraction-like.  I told my mom and sister that I thought we should probably just head down then. 

We all piled in the car, and I was pretty stressed out.  I had been timing the contractions, and even though they were still very mild, they were only about 4 minutes apart!  I called Derek and told him that I thought he should probably leave to come meet us, and he started to wrap things up at work so he could leave.

My doctor had been pretty adamant about me coming in at the first contraction, and even though I had that false labor on Monday, I could tell these contractions were different.  I went ahead and called my doctor to tell them we were coming down.  They said to head straight over to the hospital, since we were about an hour and twenty minutes away, and they thought it might move fast.

All the way down I timed the contractions, and they stayed steady at 4 minutes apart, but they started to get a little stronger.  I started sow-breathing through them.  Thankfully at this point my nausea had faded quite a bit.  I decided I should probably eat something before I headed to the hospital, so we stopped and my mom got me a smoothie.  We arrived at the hospital and parked in front of the emergency room to wait for Derek to get there, with me sipping my smoothie in between contractions.  I was really worried that I would drink it and then throw it up again, but it actually made me feel even better, and my nausea was soon completely gone.

I remember just sitting, chatting with my mom and sister, and then when a contraction came on I would stare at this smiley-face balloon that was tied to a stop sign across the street.  The contractions had definitely gotten stronger at this point, but it was that good, solid kind of contraction pain, completely manageable.  I just stared at that balloon and breathed through contractions.

Derek, in the meantime, was speeding through traffic, frantic to get to the hospital in case my labor went as quickly as it did with Gwen.  Finally he arrived, but I convinced him to go get himself some lunch before we went in.  It was about 1:30 by this point, and I knew the contractions weren't strong enough that we had to go in right that second.

Once Derek had eaten, I got out of the car, and we started to get our bags out so we could get checked in.  But after I stood up and moved around some, the contractions were suddenly way lighter - they were only lasting about 20 seconds instead of 40-50, and I could walk and talk through them, instead of having to breath.  I started to worry that maybe this really was false labor after all, and I was so discouraged.  My mom and sister thought we should try walking around the hospital before we went in to see if we could get them to pick up some, and I thought that was a good idea.   

I told Wyatt I was going to go have the new baby, and he was so cute about it.  We said goodbye to them, kissed the kids, and they left.  I was glad I got to spend some of early labor with my mom and sister, and I loved having Wyatt and Gwen to talk to and hug and kiss - I was sorry to see them go, and I was still hoping that this was the real deal.

Derek and I put our bags in his car and started walking around the hospital grounds - but it seemed like the more we walked, the easier my contractions got, though they were still 4 minutes apart.  I was really discouraged at this point, but I think a part of me still knew that this wasn't a false alarm.  We stopped by the bathroom on our way around the hospital, and I took one last belly picture:

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We had just finished our first lap around the outside of the hospital when I got a call from my doctor's office.  It was one of the nurses saying that she had received a call from the hospital wondering where we were (I thought they might be freaking out a bit, considering my history of not making it there).  I told them that we were there, we were just walking around outside because my contractions had slowed down a bit.  It was almost 2:30 by now, which was the time of my original doctor's appointment, so the nurse asked us if we wanted to come into the office to get checked out.  I didn't even think of this before, so I was happy we could at least go there for a quick check!  The office building is right next to the hospital, so we walked over.

We went in and sat in the waiting room, and I noticed that the contractions were worse when I was sitting down.  We were brought back to the exam room, and I started getting emotional because I really didn't want it to be false labor.  My favorite doctor (we'll call her Dr. B), came in right after I teared up.  Dr. B and I have really good rapport, and she asked if I was in pain, and I told her no, that I was just frustrated about the contractions slowing down.  She was really sympathetic and said she would go ahead and check my cervix.  

She told me I was at 4 cm, and I thought that was really encouraging!  I was hoping for at least a 4, since at my last appointment I had been at 2 cm.    She told us we could head over to the hospital, but if we didn't want to go yet she wanted us to stay close while things progressed. 

We told her we had been thinking about going to a movie theater.  This was part of the "birth plan" that Derek and I had discussed before - that we might go to a movie in early labor so we could be close the hospital (since we live an hour away), but not in the hospital.  Dr. B got this funny look on her face and said she didn't know about a movie - she suggested maybe we just get something to eat first and see where we were.  So Derek and I decided to go get some ice cream.

We walked back over the hospital, climbed in the car, and drove two minutes over to Baskin Robbins.  Right after we got in the car my contractions spaced out to 6 minutes apart, but all of a sudden they were more painful again.  

I didn't really want a whole ice cream to myself, so we decided to split one.  I just waited in the car while Derek ran in to buy it, because I didn't want to have a contraction in the middle of Baskin Robbins.

The contractions had definitely taken a step up in intensity just in those few minutes, and I started doing my "he he" breathing through them.  After Derek came back out to the car I made him wait until I had my next contraction to drive back over the the hospital, because I didn't want to be driving while I was dealing with a contraction.  It amazed me how quickly things got more painful.  It happened suddenly with Gwen too, but it still surprised me.

We ate a little bit more of our ice cream in the hospital parking lot, but I knew that we shouldn't wait too much longer to go in.  I was already not looking forward to trying to check in through my contractions.  We finished up, grabbed our bags, and headed in. . .

Look for Part Two tomorrow!
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Hannah said...

Ah!!! I love reading this! I cannot wait to read the rest tomorrow! :)

Melanie said...

Ahh the suspense!!! Can't wait to read part 2!!!

Jessica said...

I can't wait to read the rest!

Anonymous said...

The suspense, indeed! Can't wait to read the rest tomorrow! :)

Alli said...

God is so good in the way He answers prayers! Such an awesome testimony! Can't wait for the rest tomorrow!

Kate Craig said...

oh man I hate all that uncertainty! How strange about the timing of the stomach issue! And it's SO sad when little kids throw up

Unknown said...

Um - ADORABLE MATERNITY TOP! Popping over to part two!

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