We were thrilled to welcome a third baby into our family one month ago today! And luckily for you, it’s quite the story.
First some background: my husband was starting a new job, and his first day of work was my due date. Yeah, not well planned, I know. Aside from a possible gap in insurance, we really just wanted to have me and the baby home before the new job started. It worked out to schedule an induction a week early on the day my doctor was on call. As long as I had the baby by 5 pm, I’d get my own doctor that knew me. Sounds like a plan, right?!
But the morning of the induction, the hospital didn’t have room for me. Apparently too many ladies went into labor the night before (the nerve!), and there weren’t enough nurse/rooms to go around. It’s such a deflating feeling to think you’re going to have a baby, and then get told to wait. And call back in a few hours. And then wait again.
We did eventually get admitted, but it was 3 hours after the original appointment. We knew we would be cutting it close to actually have a baby by the time my doctor left by five o’clock. Luckily, the nurse on call was fully supportive of our “goal” to have a baby by five, and treated me accordingly (like raising my pitocin dosage on a consistent schedule).
So I got pitocin, and started contracting up a storm. After a few hours the doctor came in to break my water. He laughed because he said I ought to be huffing and puffing with all those contractions, but instead I was quietly reading a book. (Yes, my husband and I are huge
nerds readers and we each brought a novel to the hospital, fully expecting to have some time to read!)
With my water broken, the contractions got intense pretty quickly. I got my epidural (hallelujah!) and eagerly awaited a progress check. Surely, after hours of pitocin, my body would remember what it was like to be in labor, and things would be moving along, right?
No go. I hadn’t changed one bit since I’d walked in the hospital doors. We were so bummed.
We resigned ourselves to a long labor, and started talked about a midnight baby. My doctor came in to say “goodbye-and-see-you-in-six-weeks.” Not what I wanted to hear! A new nurse was assigned to me, and she wanted to try changing my position often to see if it helped. She also needed to keep the baby on the monitor really well, so she stayed in the room and chatting with us.
Now this is where the story gets good…
Right after my doctor left at 5:00, I told my husband he should go get some dinner, because I needed him to have energy that night.
He agreed, and headed out the door. As he left he called over his shoulder “call me if you deliver!” and I called back “Don’t miss it!” Seriously people, you shouldn’t joke about these things.
My husband walked out the door at 5:29 exactly, because I remember looking at the clock and then explaining to the nurse that everyone in my family got cranky if they didn’t eat dinner on time. You may think I’m exaggerating, but it’s totally true.
A few minutes later, the nurse decided it was time to move me to face the other direction. She picked up the blanket to help me roll over, and then she froze. Her eyes got really big, and she looked right at me and said “Don’t move. And call your husband right now.” I was about to ask why and she cut me off. “Right now!”
She didn’t even wait for me, she just picked up her own phone and started rattling off the things she needed: the doctor, the table, a baby catcher. What?!
It was 5:35, but I called my husband, and told him the only thing I knew- to come back right now. He said ok and hung up. Nurses started arriving while I was on the phone, and the room was suddenly very crowded and busy. I was lying almost flat on my back and I really wanted to sit up, but the nurse refused, saying”The baby is right there. Like, on his way out. Don’t move a muscle!”
The doctor walked in just then. She had on nice clothes, since she’d only be on call for a few minutes. She started to put on the doctor scrubs, and then looked over at me to assess the situation. Shocked, she dropped the scrubs, leaned over the bed with her hands outstretched, and just said “Push.”
I obediently gave one half-hearted push, unsure if I even remembered how.
And just like that, out came my baby. And my husband missed it!
He was born at 5:39, ten short minutes after dad walked out to get some dinner.
My husband came back at 5:45. At first he thought he was ok, because there were a lot of people in the room, but the bed hadn’t been broken down, and there weren’t stirrups up or anything. And then he saw the baby on my chest, and my face said it all: shock, joy, amazement, relief… and already totally in love with our baby.
Now, if this was our first baby, we would be devastated. But on your third baby, you shrug and admit it’s a pretty funny story. Sure, it was not at all ideal, but what could you do? What could anyone have done? I had an epidural and was reasonably numb, so it’s not like I knew what was going on. I hadn’t progressed for hours… why would anyone have thought to check me when I had been a three only a few minutes ago?
So that’s our amazing and joyous story of getting our baby here to earth. The goal was to have a healthy baby and that’s what happened… just a lot faster than we thought it would!
My new favorite picture:
Once things calmed down, my husband when to the car to get his uneaten dinner. He had missed the birth of his son for that Chinese food… so you better believe I ate some of it!
We are so grateful for our sweet, healthy baby. We are thrilled to be a family a five now!
Many thanks to my dear friend Margaret who took most of these photos. She was supposed to be there at the pivotal moment, but alas, I told her to go home and get some dinner as well. In the wise words of my nurse, “Never again will I let a husband go get dinner before I check his wife.”
Anyone else have crazy fast birth stories? Tell me about them!