The story of Cecelia’s, my third child's, birth is quite funny. She was turning out to be a lot like her brother Patrick in the sense that I was told for weeks it could be any time now. However, nothing happened. After Patrick and my having to be induced, I was not holding my breath on Cecelia coming early at all.
It was December, and I work in education. December is typically a busy time of year for an elementary school. In fact, my co-school counselor and I had a big event planned for early December so I really didn’t want to have the baby early. Then, I was told by the secretary at my school that they were going to do a shower for me on December 7th so I should not have her before then. Mind you, I was due December 16th. Although I knew my daughter would not come early, I was getting very uncomfortable at work and at home and I knew that if I gave birth after my due date, then I would run into Christmas chaos.
My event went on without a hitch, and I was there for all of it. My co-counselor was very happy she did not have to run it solo. December 7, My baby shower was held, and my co-workers, of course, spoiled Cecelia and I! Then, it was December 8th. At school, we were having a holiday door decorating contest. I decided my co-counselor and I should participate. I spent almost my entire day decorating our office door like Lucy from the Peanuts in her counseling booth(get it..school counselor...counseling booth...haha). Then, at about 1:30 PM, I got a message from a friend that she had her baby that day. We were due about 10 days apart and she has been induced that day. I was so happy for her and her family!
I continued to go about my business and then at about 2:00 PM, I started to not feel quite right. Like my first born’s beginning of labor, I felt as if whatever I ate for lunch was just not agreeing with me. I kept going on with my day as I assumed the feeling would pass. However, that uncomfortable feeling turned into minor contractions. Since about 30 weeks, I had been having contractions anytime I overdid it at work. Usually, I would just go home and crash for the night when that happened. I decided that day that I should go home right after school and rest and my husband had agreed to pick up our boys from daycare so that I could do that.
By the time the school day ended, I was feeling regular contractions. They were stronger, too. My co-counselor helped me collect my things and walked me to the car. She hugged me and said, “I’ll see you tomorrow, maybe.”
As I drove home, I could tell my contractions were getting closer together. I started timing them and noticed that I had three in a row that were 5 minutes apart. I called my mom, and she thought it would be a good idea to head to the doctor to get checked out. I called my husband, Kevin, and told him to meet me at the hospital. Luckily, my in-laws were available to come get my kids from child care.
At 4:30 PM, I got to the hospital and Kevin was not there yet. At this point, my contractions are so strong I could not even stand up. Despite the strong contractions, I got myself up to labor and delivery unit of the hospital all by myself. If you haven’t realized by now, yes, I had driven myself to the hospital while in labor.
When I finally got to a triage room, Kevin arrived. The nurse told me that I was only 2 cm dilated but that she would go ahead and contact my doctor and see if he wanted me to walk around the hospital to speed things up or to just head home. (UGH!!! Go home! Seriously?) Not even 5 minutes after the nurse left my triage room (at about 5:00 PM), my water breaks….all over the triage bed….whoa…..I called the nurse back in and told her what happened. She double checked to make sure it was amniotic fluid. It was. She then told me that I was not going anywhere after all; I was having a baby today.
We got to our labor and delivery room. Remember, I came from work. No bag. No extra stuff. Just my work bag and purse. Oh ya, no phone charger and the phone was at 10%. That was not going to work since I knew I would be texting, calling and taking pictures as the night went on. Luckily, my friend who had her baby was in the same hospital as us. She had a spare phone charger and saved the day. I even apologized and said I did not mean to steal her or her child’s thunder. She laughed and said she loved that her new daughter and mine would be birthday buddies! I was all set.
For the next few hours, not a lot had happened. I labored for what felt like forever (or just 5 more hours--not that long in the grand scheme of things). At about 10:30 PM, the triage nurse reported that I was almost fully dilated and that she was going to talk to the doctor about the next steps. She came back and decided to try to move things along...let's just say she did an "exam" and my laboring drastically sped up. Immediately, I needed to push. However, no one was ready for me to do that. The whole delivery team came rushing in. Next thing I knew, I was ready and, after one long push, Cecelia had arrived. When you have three kids and three birth stories, it is hard to believe you could be as happy as you are when, say, your first is born. But, I have been SO happy at the conclusion of each one of my births. It IS possible to be crazy in love with all three of you babies the first moment you see them.
About the Author: Katie is a working mom of 3 little darlings. She is also a wifey to a man named Kevin. When Katie is not partaking in the joys of motherhood, she is working at an elementary school where she is a guidance counselor.