As I have done with Derrick, Abigail, and Grace, here is the detailed story of my labor and delivery with Reid, for posterity and all.
On Thursday we went to a regularly scheduled check-up at noon. The week before, my doctor had gone ahead and checked me for dilation at the time he tested me for GBS. At the time, I was not really doing much, although I had been feeling that things were starting to pick up, and I was dilated a fingertip, maybe. During the week that followed, I continued to have the normal Braxton-Hicks contractions, although the cramping was not as much as it had been. So, when I went in for my appointment on Thursday, I really wasn’t expecting much. At best, we were hoping to convince our doctor to make plans for an induction the following week. Throughout this pregnancy, there was always a discrepancy between the due date we were using and the one that my doctor was going by. After having yet another discussion with the doctor about why their due date was off, and considering that I tested positive for GBS, we reviewed my history again and he decided that we could go ahead and plan an induction for October 8th. To make it more “politically correct,” he finally changed my due date from the 21st to the 17th. Then he went ahead and checked me. Imagine our surprise to find out that I was a 3, almost 4. He of course informed me that I could walk around that way for a while, but that the now scheduled induction was definitely doable since I was clearly on my way. We left the office, and ran a couple of errands before going home. From the moment I left the appointment, I began having an increase in the intensity of contractions that I was feeling. I started to have flashbacks to Abbie’s delivery, but was not yet ready to go in to the hospital to be checked only to be sent home. After all, we had only been gone from the doctor’s office for a few hours. Fortunately it was Jon’s day off, so I sent him to pick up the kids from school because Grace was down for a nap. Within about 10 minutes of sending him out the door, I decided that we needed to head to the hospital, just to be safe. I called and told him to hurry so that we could run the children back to my mother’s house and then head to the hospital. He decided that it was probably a better idea if we just left them with our friends across the street and had my mom come and get them. But we couldn’t get ahold of our friends, so fortunately my mother just got in the car and was only a few minutes behind Jon in getting to our house. It was about 3:30 pm when we left our house for the hospital, and I was still only about 90% sure that we needed to be going. As we arrived at the hospital, Jon grabbed a wheelchair for me as I attempted to walk across the parking lot. Of course, we took the wrong elevator and needed a receptionist to walk us through the maze to get to the Family Center. If someone could explain the logic of placing Labor and Delivery as far away from the main entrance as possible, I would appreciate it. In any case, we made it there and they had me change while Jon went back to Admissions to let them know I was there. I always feel like the nurses think I’m just full of it when I walk in fairly calm and collected, but this time when I said “I know I don’t act like I’m in labor, but…” the nurse said “It’s your fourth baby, we believe you.” Good thing, because I was 8 centimeters with a bulging bag of water. The thing was that I needed antibiotics for the GBS, and there was clearly little time to do more than one dose, if that. They had me just lay on my side and try not to let my water break while they administered the penicillin. Fortunately it didn’t take too long to get one dose in to my system, but once again it killed my arm. Such a weird stinging, cold sensation. Anyways, they got my doctor over to the hospital, he broke my water, I continued to work through the contractions until I felt like pushing, I pushed no more than 10 times before he was out, and it was all over about an hour after I got to the hospital. Reid Charles was born on October 2, 2008 at 4:55 pm. He weighed 7 lbs. 6.6 oz. and was 19 inches long. He has a full head of copper colored hair (the first comment the nurse had was about the full head of reddish hair) and is perfect in every way. Reid was the smallest of my babies, but was also 4 days earlier than any of the others. We spent two nights in the hospital and came home on Saturday, even though I was ready to leave Friday night, because they wanted to watch him for longer since I didn’t have time to get the full course of antibiotics before delivery. I was really worried prior to going in to labor that I was going to break my streak and end up asking for pain medication on my last baby, not that I fault anyone who does it but I know that I can do it without, but am proud to say that I was able to do it again completely natural. I feel such accomplishment at having birthed all four of my children without any pain meds. Now it’s time to get my pre-kid body back!