At 5am, I had contractions strong enough to wake me up. (I had been having false labor for five days…) At 7:00, a contraction caused me to double over and cry. I called the help nurse. At 7:30am, she called me back and told me to get to L&D. I hadn’t woke Earl or Mom up yet. We scrambled to get a friend to cover breakfast for guests at the inn and left for the hospital at 8. Didn’t get there until 9, due to traffic.
I was 4cm dilated and they admitted me. The next three hours were not my favorite on record. It took four sticks (and a nurse anesthesist) to get my IV in (I was group B strep positive and had to have antibiotics started.) The nurse couldn’t get my contractions to register on the monitor and she kept saying I wasn’t contracting. Eventually another nurse started internal monitoring and we could see each contraction on the monitor. I remember wanting to strangle the bad nurse when she started my IV on 100% refrigerated antibiotic. My arm felt like ice and I thought I was going to die. I finally got my epidural at noon – not because of them waiting on my progress, but due to holdups with my bloodwork and IV. FUN! My water broke just before I got the epidural and I was at 5cm.
After the epidural, I was comfortable and was able to rest. I had been fighting each contraction so I think by relaxing, my body was finally able to progress. They did not do any checks on me again until 3:50pm. The midwife said that if I was at 7cm, they would be pleased. So when she asked me how I felt about pushing, I was caught off guard! I began pushing at 3:52 I believe and Alyssa was born at 3:59, after 9 contractions of pushing. I still wonder how long I was completely dilated! It had to be a long time, with each contraction pushing her lower – and making my job a whole lot easier.
Alyssa was handed to me and I remember looking at her and thinking she looked exactly like Earl. I was overwhelmed with feelings of inadequacy and fear and didn’t know why I didn’t feel immediate attachment to her. I remember asking myself “What now? What have I done?” LOL
We left the hospital 23 hours later. I cried on the way out. Alyssa kept choking in the hospital and turning blue and I was terrified that I would no longer have a button to push and call the nurse. I thought for sure she would die during her infancy due to my inadequacy.
I believe it was three or four nights later, during a 3am feeding, that I was watching Alyssa and absolutely fell in love. All of that maternal instinct finally kicked in (probably on time – she had been born a week before her due date!) I still feel that way about her today. Just thinking about how much I adore that little girl makes me tear up.
She turned four today. How much she has grown! From 6 lbs, 10 oz, and 21.5 inches long – to 31.5 lbs and 40.5 inches! From a wide-eyed newborn to an active, playful, imaginitive, and sweet little girl. I hope she stays sweet like this. I can never get enough hugs and kisses.
We celebrated with an ice-cream cake and presents. She was excited to be the Birthday Girl. Daddy helped her blow out her candles and I took pictures. Just as I was once in denial about being pregnant, being in labor, and being a mother – I am now in denial that my little baby could possibly be a big four years old! Yet I’m excited about the girl she is becoming. I am enjoying teaching her about her world and our God. I can’t wait to see what God makes of her life and how he uses her sweet spirit (minus the tantrums! LOL)