On Wednesday evening, July 30, I lost my mucous plug. I had been slowly losing it since we were on vacation in the Tetons, but it was obvious to me that this was different - this was more. I had been the girl calling the nurse hotline every time there was an increase in discharge, and now I called again. I was reassured that mucous is "normal" and to just keep an eye on it. My midwife told me the same. So, the next day I kept an eye on it. And it increased. It turned bright red. I thought, "This is nothing - I am NOT going to be the girl who goes to the hospital and is sent home." So I bought some jumbo pads and continued on with my day.
Mid-afternoon, I was in the car driving to Seattle, in traffic, to pick up a killer deal on a Craigslist find - our baby girl's stroller. While driving, I felt a small gush of fluid find its' way out of me, and was relieved I had bought the jumbo pads. I picked up the stroller and was home several hours later. I started having loose stools and feeling slightly nauseous. I wondered about that gush in the car. I called the nurse hotline once again, worried that if I was leaking amniotic fluid, the baby could get an infection. The nurse was short with me, but told me I should go to labor and delivery just to get it checked out. I figured we'd be home that night - a typical "girl who cried wolf" situation.
We reluctantly packed some things in the hospital bag that had been put off, grabbed a couple of pizzas, and slowly made our way to the hospital, chuckling that we'd be doing this again in a few weeks when I was actually in labor. I would certainly eat the GF pizza on the way home in an hour or so.
The nurse's words brought on so many emotions. I could have cried, but I think I may have just smiled and laughed. It didn't seem real! It was almost time to meet my girl? I wasn't prepared for this.
I texted our families. The nurses asked if I was having regular contractions, and I said no. They hooked me up and informed that yes, I was actually having contractions. News to me! I hadn't felt a single Braxton Hicks the entire pregnancy, and now regular contractions and still nothing? It still didn't seem real.
Due to being 3 weeks early and having premature rupture of membranes, I was given medication to speed up the birthing process so that our girl would be born within 24 hours. 24 hours! I was going to look at her face so soon. They also suggested an early epidural since I was going to need pitocin. I labored (without feeling a thing) in to the evening. Finally, my fore sack ruptured and I started feeling contractions for the first time. Real feeling! I could tell my body was trying to work out this baby. I went through roughly an hour of active labor before they moved me to the delivery room and administered an epidural. After that, I rested through the early morning hours, dreaming about anywhere between 6am and 12pm when I would meet our sweet girl.
I was dilated to a 4.
The only sad part of this birth story was that Matt came down with the stomach flu, and was literally running out of the delivery room to throw up before she was born. He was sent home from the hospital, and couldn't even make it back to hold his daughter until Saturday evening. I spent the first evening in the hospital with my daughter alone. Exhaustion and emotions ruled the night. I cried out of joy when I looked at her, and cried out of tiredness when I looked at the clock. I must have gone 60 hours without sleep. By the time my Mom came back to help, I was a wreck. I don't know how to sleep with her. I love her so much. Matt hasn't even held her. There were so many things to feel.
Miss Maizee Grace Larson, we are so honored to be your parents. You have opened a part of our hearts that is full of new feelings. Welcome to the world, little one!