I went to bed the night before having sporadic, mild contractions. I didn't think much of them because I'd been having them for days by that point. About midnight I started to take them more seriously as they started becoming more regular. At 2:00 am I couldn't sleep through them anymore. I wanted to wait as long as possible before waking Luke in case it was false labor. However, by 4:30 am they were coming every 2 1/2 minutes apart and lasting almost a minute. They were also quite painful by this point so I woke him up.
Things went pretty quickly from here. I had planned on laboring at home for as long as possible, but when they started coming that close together so quickly I thought it best to at least give my midwife a call. After talking to her for a bit she advised I go into the hospital. We called Luke's mom and she came right over to stay with Charlotte. I wanted so badly to say goodbye to Charlotte before we left and luckily she woke up for a bit so I could. As I held her close and explained what was going to happen, my eyes filled with tears at the thought of leaving her to go have another baby. It wasn't going to be just me and her anymore. I was excited to be having another baby, but Charlotte was my baby. She made me a mother and for that she will always hold a special place in my heart.
We made it to the hospital by 6:00 am where I was taken to triage. I was dilated to 4 cm. They had me walk the halls for about 30 minutes until the next shift of nurses got there at 7:00 am. I was standing at the nurses station when a painful contraction started. Suddenly I felt someone's hands on my hips pushing them in and up. It brought immediate relief! That was my first encounter with our nurse Leisl. At the time I had no idea just how much I would come to rely on her.
We got settled into our room and Leisl began teaching Luke different manual techniques to use during my contractions. She specializes in natural delivery and offered many tips and tricks to relieve some of the pain. At this point I was dilated 6 cm. I moved around into several different positions, soaked in a hot jacuzzi (this was the best and most helpful!), sat on the exercise ball, etc. Sometimes the different positions helped, and sometimes they didn't. Same thing with the different maneuvers. What would work for one contraction wouldn't for the next. Leisl and Luke were incredible support people. Leisl is LDS too and used lots of comparisons with the Gospel to aid me mentally. Her and Luke not only supported me physically, but mentally, emotionally and spiritually as well. She explained to me what would happen when I entered the transition phase. That I would not be myself. I would feel lots of pain, anger, and out of control of the situation. She said it would be completely fine if I wanted to curse! It's funny to think about that now, but not at the time.
At 8 cm I called my mom crying. I was telling everyone I didn't want to do it anymore. I was begging for an epidural, but was told it was too late for that. This was definitely the transition phase Leisl was talking about. She reminded me again what would happen during this phase and that it was totally normal. She gave me nitrous gas at this point. She told me it wouldn't take the pain away, but that it would give me something else to focus on. It semi worked. It made me loopy and my sense of time was thrown off. I couldn't tell if hours or minutes had passed.
9 cm ..... So much pressure and starting to feel the urge to push. I asked when I could start pushing and they all just said I would know when it was time. My midwife and other nurses came in to prepare for the pushing phase. Every contraction from this point on contorted my body as it naturally started to push him out of me.
10 cm .... Luke got into position to catch Evan. I'm totally not myself at this point (Luke said he's never seen this side of me before....yikes). I was screaming and absolutely out of control. I was asking for a C-section! I just wanted to be knocked out. Evan would start to crown and then the contraction would end and I would be stuck like that - his head partially crowned and me in excruciating pain - until the next contraction started and I could push again. It felt like an eternity to get his huge head out. I legitimately felt I needed help getting him out. I asked for a C-section, vacuum, anything to aid me in getting him out. They all just looked at me with pity and said it was all up to me. I was so angry with them! Leisl was there the entire time holding my hand. Another nurse was on my other side. I kept grabbing for her hand, but every time I did she would try to make me hold my knee. Every time she did that I would grab for her arm again. She just wouldn't cooperate! I got angry with her too.
I only had a first degree tear with him - surprisingly because in the moment it felt like he was destroying me as he was coming out! My midwife and Leisl began getting me all back together. When Tamara (the midwife) told me I needed stitches my heart started to race. The last thing I wanted was to be touched down there! Let alone sewn up! She said she would numb me before sewing, but those needles she used to numb me.... oh I just wanted to be left alone! Postpartum recovery is almost as bad as labor and delivery. However, I must admit my recovery with this one has been night and day compared to after I had Charlotte. Eventually they finished up their work. I was bleeding quite a bit so they had to give me a shot of pitocin in my thigh, but other than that I wasn't in too bad of shape.
We got to hold and cuddle him for a good two hours before they took him to weigh and measure him. During that time he managed to poo on me (like Lottie did). He also rooted around and began nursing all on his own! Incredible! Luke and I guessed how big we thought he was and boy were we both surprised - and way off in our guesses - by how big he was! 9 pounds, 5 ounces, and 21 3/4 inches! Almost 2 pounds bigger than Lottie!
We had the hardest time deciding on his name. It wasn't until the day we were discharged that we finally settled on a name. Evan, meaning God is good, and Luke, after his daddy.
Welcome to the world Evan!!