I had planned on typing this out soon after we got home from the hospital, but that did not happen because I am a champion procrastinator!
My pregnancy with Cooper was a lot different than B's, which means I should have suspected his birth would be different than hers, but I figured it would be similar.
We moved to the Bay Area (living with the parents......) in February, but I continued to drive out to Modesto for my doctor appointments because I love my midwife and I really didn't want to find someone else. April 18th I "moved" back to Modesto so that I could have Cooper there. Brooklynne was born 4 days early, so I wanted to be there with plenty of time before he came, and I definitely had PLENTY of time. I was 38 weeks when I got there, and B and I stayed with my in-laws. Matt would be there on the weekends, and then come back to the Bay on Sunday night so he could work during the week.
B and I tried to live life as normally as we could. I went to classes every day, which was wonderful. I loved being "home," and I loved being able to see my friends on a regular basis, I got to see my best friend 2-3 times a week...it was wonderful! I lifted weights in BodyPump, shook it in Zumba and Boxed in Piloxing, all while trying to get labor going, and none of it worked. I tried every old wives tale to get labor going, and none of them worked, so we waited, impatiently. It was hard being away from Matt during the week. It was hard on Brooklynne having discipline from multiple people constantly, and it was hard feeling completely stuck there. I didn't feel like I could go anywhere because I didn't know when I'd go into labor.
I had been having Braxton Hicks for a few weeks, but it didn't seem like they were doing much. Monday morning (May 5th, 3 days after my due date) I went to BodyPump for the 3rd time since I had come to Modesto (I thought that I'd get in one week of it), which was from 9-10. I got B a cheeseburger afterward (because she likes McD's at 10 am apparently), and then we drove across the street and got me a coffee from Starbucks. Driving home I could tell that the BH contractions I had been having had changed and were obviously regular contractions. We got home and I set B up with a movie and I took a shower then bounced on the exercise ball. I called Matt after an hour of regular contractions (15 minutes apart). He was 2 hours away so he left work to come to Modesto. Of course, as soon as I called him the contractions stopped completely for an hour, but luckily started up again.
By 3 pm the contractions were between 8-10 minutes apart and pretty hard. Matt had gotten there at about 2. I was on the ball all afternoon, if I got off and walked around, the contractions picked up to be every 5 minutes, but as soon as I sat down they slowed. It was the serious premier of 24 that night, so we watched that once B went to bed. At 11 pm Matt and I took a walk and they were 2-3 minutes apart. We decided it was time to go to the hospital, so we loaded our bags into the car and headed over.
As soon as I laid on the bed for them to check me my contractions slowed again to 10 minutes. I had been dilated to a 3 for a week so I figured that with a whole day of contractions I'd be at least a 6...I wasn't even a 4, so they couldn't check me in as active labor, so Matt and I walked. He walked with me for an hour, then they checked me again and I was almost a 5, so they were able to check me in. My midwife (Irene) came soon after that (at about 2 am), and Matt laid down to take a nap (he had been up driving and working for almost 30 hours). Irene walked around the empty halls with me for about an hour, and my contractions were 1-2 minutes apart and really hard. Giana got there at 3 and switched with Irene and walked with me. I swear I walked 5 miles that night/morning.
They had hooked me up to my IV for fluids (best thing ever) and monitored the baby and my contractions. Irene checked me and I was still a 6, and offered to break my water, but I declined.
At 4 am my mother in law got there, and I kept on with the contractions (not much else I could do). By then they were extremely hard, but still not any closer together. Since I was laying down, because I was exhausted, they were still every 8-10 minutes.
I tried multiple different positions, side, back, other side, squatting, and nothing seemed to help push them along. At around 5am Irene checked me again and offered again to break my water to see if it would help me dilate more or bring my contractions together more. It didn't really do either, instead it just took my cushion away, my contractions got harder and harder with each one, but not closer together. I was beyond frustrated, completely exhausted, and extremely annoyed that I wasn't progressing. I'd have one and then another 3 minutes later and then right after and then it would be 8 minutes till another one. I finally got almost to 8 cm dilated at around 7am (almost 24 hours after my contractions had started). The contractions hurt extremely bad and I was totally over it. I'm impressed with myself that I never asked for an epidural, but there were quite a few times I was hating myself for not getting a c-section because I just wanted it over.
Irene started talking about pitocin because of my lack of progression and because my contractions were so sporadic. I never once had an urge to push, but around 7:50 or 8am, I had had enough and just needed to get him the heck out of me. My contractions weren't regular, and I was only a 9, but I decided to start pushing anyway. As each contraction came (2, 8, 4, 3 minutes apart...ugh) I pushed. I pushed so hard I popped a blood vessel in my eye and a bunch under my eyes.
They started talking about how it was time, and nurses started filling the room and breaking apart the bed, the bright lights came on and Irene got in position. I never thought it "was time." Since I had experienced such a different birth with Brooklynne and such and intense "urge to push," that is what I was looking for, and I never once felt that even though I was completely drug free.
My legs were shaking SO bad, I couldn't control it, and I felt so hot, it was ridiculous!
At 8:37am on May 6th, after about 30 minutes of pushing, my beautiful son was born. Feeling him come out was the most incredible thing ever (just like with B). They put him straight to my chest, all covered in our nastiness, but I didn't care, I was just so happy. He pinked up slowly, but I wasn't worried.
Irene, my midwife, was just absolutely incredible!!
They weighed him and measured him, 6 bs 14 oz, and 19 1/4 inches long, then gave him back to me. I had orange juice to help get my sugars back.
After all the tests had been done, and they had cleaned everything up, they all cleared out of the room. My mother in law left to change and get our daughter and my brother in law. And we were alone, with our son. Our son! I got up about 25 minutes later and took a shower, which felt SO good! My legs were still a little shakey, but I managed just fine by myself, never once felt out of control.
My mother in law came back at 10:20 with Brooklynne, and I could just feel her excitement. Apparently when my MIL had gone to pick her up and get her ready she asked her if she wanted to go meet Cooper, and she said "he's here already?" She was calm but so proud. I couldn't believe I was finally introducing our daughter to our son. She walked into the room carrying the dog she had made for him at Build A Bear.
We then moved to our postpartum room (the same room we had with B), and she was so excited to help carry my bag, and press the button that turned on the lullaby announcing a baby had been born.
Our first photo as a family of four!
We stayed in the hospital until the following evening, May 7th. My recovery has been incredible so far, and we are so thankful for our little son!
Photography by Giana Silva Photography!
Having her take pictures was amazing and such a blessing!!