On December 2nd I tried all the midwife’s suggestions for naturally inducing labor:
1. Drink red raspberry leaf tea all day
2. Drink 2 teaspoons of castor oil mixed in orange juice (I was nervous to drink it, but I couldn’t taste the oil at all)
3. Cuddle with Andy
The day before, I even ate “the salad” that is supposed to make you go into labor within 48 hours, as well as eggplant parmesan.
Something worked! The baby was finally ready.
After I sent out my blog post, I had a few contractions while I read to the kids at bedtime, and a few more as I washed dishes, but I tried not to get too excited in case it wasn’t really labor.
I had to wake Andy to help me at 11 pm. At that point, I had to lean on a chair to breathe through the contractions. We knew it was the real thing when he started timing the contractions and they were 3-5 minutes apart and 1 minute long–I had only been laboring for an hour but we knew we had to get to the hospital quick!
We left at midnight and arrived at the hospital around 12:30 am. The most exciting part about this timing was that the baby was going to arrive on Andy’s birthday. We kept laughing about it, even as my contractions were getting more and more serious.
Two birthdays on December 3.
So we check in at the hospital and this resident doctor walks in and says he is going to deliver my baby. He looks like a movie star. He and Andy start chatting about how they both think each other look like movie stars, and I have another huge contraction.
I didn’t have time to think about the fact that he was good-looking, and at that point it didn’t matter if Jared Leto’s twin was delivering my baby. The baby was coming.
The staff was hesitant to check me in–I guess a lot of women come in who are not really in labor–until they did an exam and saw the baby’s hair. “You are in labor! About five centimeters dilated.”
When we got to the delivery room, I had to use the restroom. I kept thinking, Oh no! The castor oil! I took too much castor oil! because my stomach hurt, and my contractions were so bad–right on top of each other. I was in the bathroom for 15 minutes, trying to breathe through contraction after contraction. I could hear Andy chatting with another doctor in the delivery room, and I could hear her saying they wanted to give me antibiotics.
Finally, I waddled out of the bathroom and approached the bed. “We have to give you antibiotics,” the female doctor said.
I tried not to let it stress me out. It’s hard to explain how you feel when you are about to pop out a baby. It’s like you have to shut out every distraction because your body is working so hard.
“There’s no time,” was all I could whisper. It wasn’t the castor oil. It was the baby’s head moving down.
I sat down, reclined on my side, and immediately started to grunt and push. Andy knew that sound.
Andy lifted the hospital gown and calmly told the nurse, “There’s a head. She’s crowning.”
I heard a dozen feet scurrying into the room, and saw a bright light pointed at my body. “Just wait, just wait!” I begged, because I could feel someone trying to grab the baby’s head. Five seconds later, I gave one more push and she was out.
A healthy baby girl. Thank the Lord!
6 lbs. 12 oz., 19 3/4 inches
Twenty-four days past her due date, just like her big sister–although her big sister was 8 lbs. 15 oz.
So many people were praying for us. I know without a doubt that God heard your prayers and ours.
I didn’t get a midwife, but I got an excellent resident doctor.
Now that I think about it, he was the first male doctor I had had in 5 pregnancies, and he did an excellent job from beginning to end. In fact, he showed that he was impressed that I’d had 4 previous drug-free child births, and that in itself made me feel like he respected me as a human being. He was OK with letting everything happen naturally. He was very respectful of my birth plan and our wishes for how the labor and delivery would go. It was another great experience with a quick delivery at the hospital. Only one or two things caused unnecessary stress, but I can’t complain!
I am so thankful for a healthy delivery of baby.
We named her Pearl Alice Emilia, after my sister and my mom.
Thank you for sharing in my pregnancy journey. If you would like to read more posts from this pregnancy, start here.