"The nurses looked at me like I was crazy and thought I would for sure be in labor for a long time if I was already asking for the epidural."
When I found out I was pregnant with my second baby just 13 months after having my first, I knew I wanted to do things a little differently this time around. With my son, Sawyer, I was overdue and so anxious to meet “pie baby” (we didn’t know the gender). Because of that, I decided an induction was the perfect solution. After 18 hours of labor with three of those hours spent pushing, I knew I wanted the birth of my second baby to be brought on naturally.
Fast forward nine months, and I couldn’t believe how unsure I was about labor. Was that a true contraction? Is this painful enough to be labor? Should I call my husband from work? Because my first labor was spent only having Pitocin contractions, I wasn’t sure what a true contraction was like!
The weekend before my due date, my husband, Michael, was off work, and my doctor was on call. I wanted so badly to have the baby that weekend. We walked, played outside, completed yard work and did some last minute shopping—all with the hopes of having our “team green” baby arrive while my husband was off.
At 3 a.m. when I was admitted.
Saturday morning at about 5 a.m., I was having contractions that were often enough to make me time them but not overly painful. When a few of them stopped me in my tracks—I knew it was time to go in. After our arrival we found out that I was 2 cm and contracting irregularly, so they sent us to walk the halls.
By the time our doctor arrived to check my progress, I was at a 4, and my contractions had slowed. She said I had two options: I could stay and receive Pitocin, or I could leave and let labor come on naturally. I had a baby shower to attend in a half hour, and I didn’t want to miss it. So, off we went, leaving the hospital still very pregnant!
Our day went on, and I had a few contractions here and there—but nothing too alarming—so I prepared to be pregnant for a few more days.
At around 11 p.m. Saturday night, I felt like labor could be starting again. After an hour we decided to go to L&D again, as I thought these contractions were real. I was still not feeling them as far as pain, just pressure.
When we checked in my contractions were consistent, but I was still at a 4. At 3 a.m. my doctor called to see if I wanted to have some “augmentation” to my labor. I decided at that point a little Pitocin wouldn’t be too bad. The moment they hooked me up, my water broke. The baby was coming!
At 3:30 a.m. I called and begged for the epidural! The nurses looked at me like I was crazy and thought I would for sure be in labor for a long time if I was already asking for the epidural. I was shaking and struggling through every contraction, and I finally realized: This is what a true contraction feels like. Once my epidural was placed, I was ready for relief … but it didn’t come.
I pressed the nurses button, and the anesthesiologist came in to check my epidural. They couldn’t understand why it wasn’t working or why I was feeling so much pain. Then it came—the urge to push. I told the nurse my body was pushing, and she gave me a “crazy lady” look. She decided to check me. To her (and my) surprise … I was fully dilated, and the baby was coming!
After 30 minutes of pushing we found out we had a beautiful little girl, Naomi—the perfect edition to our little family—weighing 7 pounds, 5 ounces and born at 6 a.m. on the dot.
Looking back I am extremely happy I asked for the augmentation. Had my water broken at home and my husband been at work, I am not sure he would have been there for the birth of our daughter.
Send us your birth story! Whether you had a home birth, hospital birth, 37-hour labor or emergency C-section, we’d love to read the tale of your little one’s grand entrance. Write up your birth story (click here for tips on getting started) and email it, along with a few photos, to firstname.lastname@example.org. We’ll share it on our Birth Day blog and may even print it in an upcoming issue!