This is a little late.
Everleigh Alice Patterson was born on Decemeber 23 2012 at 2:08 am weighing 7 lbs 3oz and 20 in long.
She was determined to come into the world right on time. Only two hours past the start of her due date.
Sitting here a month later, it all seems like a blur.
Friday December 21, I woke up feeling crampy, but didn’t think anything of it. Never having been through labor before, I didn’t know what to expect. I ran errands with my mom and went about my day fairly normal. All the while I questioned whether this was it, but just wrote it off. I made a joke to Ryan about me going into labor, but neither of us took it seriously. That night, my cramps disappeared…and I thought, “okay, that wasn’t it.”
The next morning, I woke up at 5 am and the “cramps” were back. This time they felt consistent, though. I woke my husband up and told him I thought I was having contractions. We decided to watch a movie to keep our mind off of them, because they were still far apart. As we watched Knocked Up, the contractions came about every 10 minutes. Once it was an acceptable time to get out of bed, we went to Ikea with my mom. The whole time, every 10 minutes, I would have to stop and get through a contraction. They weren’t super painful, but very uncomfortable.
Around 5 pm we went to the mall to get some last minute Christmas gifts and, as we were leaving, I noticed that the contractions got a lot closer together. We went home and started timing them. They were 5 minutes apart and lasted for about 50 seconds each. They had also gotten a lot more intense. Still not unbearable, but noticeable. We called the doctor and she said to head to the hospital to be checked. We got the hospital bag and our birth plan and headed in.
We got to L&D and signed in. They took us to a small room and hooked me up to a monitor. The nurse checked me and I was only 1 1/2 cm. That really disappointed me, but I hoped I would progress while there. We were left alone with no real explanation of what to look for. We Googled what everything on the machine meant and it showed that my contractions weren’t very strong. We waited, and waited, and waited to hear back word and all the while my contractions started to get more and more painful. The nurse came in and told me that my doctor was sending me home because my contractions weren’t “painful” enough. She told me to wait until I couldn’t walk or talk through them and come back. This really made me feel bad and as soon as she left I had another contraction. The first one that made me cry. I got dressed and we left. There were tears streaming down my face,and I didn’t know where they were coming from. Anger? Pain? Hurt feelings? I wasn’t sure of my emotions at this point.
While in the car, my contractions picked up like crazy. I was making a lot of noise through them, and sitting in the car seat was very uncomfortable. I told Ryan that once we got home, I didn’t want anyone to bother me. I went straight upstairs and laid down. Instantly, I was hit with another contraction and bawled through it. Ryan went to the gas station to get some snacks for me and when he got back I told him I wanted to get in the bath tub. He drew me a bath and made me a plate of snacks and I got in. The water helped with my contractions and I took the opportunity to eat. I knew I probably had a long night ahead of me and needed to keep up my strength. When I was done eating, the water had gotten cool and I wanted to get out. We went into our room and put on American Dad for some background noise and Ryan helped me get through each contraction. By this time I was having to breathe my way through each one. They were getting more and more painful, but I still wasn’t sure when to go back in to L&D.
Around 11 pm I told Ryan that I wanted to see my mom. She came upstairs and asked how I was doing. Another contraction started and I was crying so hard that I couldn’t keep the noise down. My mom pet my head and talked me through it. She told me everything would be fine and that she would call my sister to come over (My sister has 6 children and has birthed 5 of them). While I was waiting for my sister the contractions started to become unbearable. It couldn’t get any worse than this (or so I thought). I asked Ryan to call the doctor. She told us to come in and said that if I hadn’t progressed, we would talk about pain medication and induction. Even though I was going for a natural birth, as soon as I heard pain medication I shot out of bed and got ready to go, all while doubling over in pain from contractions. As soon as I was ready to walk out the door, my sister came in. I told her to get back in the car and head to the hospital.
The car ride back to the hospital was awful. I was so glad once we got there. I told Ryan I needed a wheelchair and he went to get one. I told him not to worry about the hospital bag or birth plan (two things that wouldn’t even make inside until after she was born). He wheeled me to check-in and I signed the paperwork to be admitted. It was now 11:54 pm. We went back to the triage room and I got undressed. The nurse checked me. 5cm. “Holy crap!” was all I could think. I progressed 3 1/2 cm in just a few hours. The nurse told me to leave a urine sample. Once I got back in bed, I asked Ryan to get me some toilet paper cause I felt like I was passing some of my plug. I wiped myself and felt a big pop and then a gush. It was like I was peeing myself. It just kept coming. I said, “I think my water just broke.” My husband looked and, sure enough, it had. He told the nurse and they said they would get me to a room as soon as they could.
At this point the contractions hit me like a train. I started flailing and moaning through each one. I remember that, in between one, I informed my husband that going all natural was out the window. I wanted the epidural and I wanted it NOW. It felt like we were in that room forever and I just wanted to move to the delivery room. I don’t know what I thought this would do for me. I guess I thought that meant I could get the epidural going.
The contractions continued to get more and more intense and at this point I was sort of screaming through them. I kept thinking in my mind that this had to be transition labor. Which meant I was already around 7cm. I begged my husband to get the nurse. She came in and I told her I needed to get to the a delivery room so I could get my epidural. What I was trying to say was, I’m about to have this baby, but I think it just came off as me being in pain. She checked me again. 7 1/2 cm. Woah. My room was ready. I was wheeled down to it and, somehow, got into the bed. This is the point where everything gets blurry.
I remember my husband telling the nurse I needed to use the restroom. In my head I had no idea where he had gotten this from, although I’m fairly certain now that I had said something about it earlier. I yelled at him that I didn’t want to walk. Then I remember the nurse saying she needed to check me and she laid me flat on my back. I didn’t like how it felt and started saying that I wanted to sit up. I heard her say, “almost 8.” I begged for the epidural again. I screamed through more contractions. I picked a spot to focus on. Door nob. “Breathe!” “Breathe, Jamie.” I kept hearing this from Ryan, the nurse, everyone. I felt like I was being yelled at. Like I was doing something wrong. “I AM!” I screamed. I begged for the epidural between each contraction. I had a feeling I wasn’t getting it, but the nurse kept telling me we were just waiting for my blood work to come back.
I started to feel the urge to push. I let the nurse know and I think she told me the doctor was on her way cause the next thing I knew, the doctor came in and the room was transformed with lights and masks and tools. I was really scared to push without any pain meds so I tried to hold it. Just the thought of that makes me laugh at this point. The nurse checked me again. 9 1/2 cm. Dear God, was I scared. I looked at Ryan and said”I’m not going to get it am I?” I could feel my lip quiver. I must have looked so pitiful. “I’m so sorry.” He said. The next contraction was the most intense yet. I just kept thinking, “I can’t get through one more of these”. The doctor told me to try a push, so when the next contraction came the nurse started counting to 10 and I pushed as hard as I could. I only made it to 6, but it actually felt good. The doctor checked me again and said to stop pushing because I had some cervix blocking her head. I was pretty much thinking “F that!!!!” and I told her I couldn’t stop. So as the next contraction came I pushed hard, again-1,2,3,4,5,6- Rest-1,2,3,4,5,6-rest. I couldn’t seem to make it past 6. This got to me for some reason, because I knew I was supposed to make it to 10. So before the next contraction, I took a BIG breath. 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10-rest-1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10-rest,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10. The nurse told me told hold my legs back. I had no strength left. Ryan did it for me, and for this I will be forever thankful. Another contraction came. 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10-“You can do it, baby! She’s right there!”-1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10-Dear god, ring of fire!-1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10-I gotta get this kid outta me!-1,2,3,4,5,6-RELIEF!
They put Everleigh on my chest and told me she had pooped. It was surreal. She hadn’t cried yet and the doctor was sucking out her throat. I waited for the first cry and when it finally came, I cried a sound of relief. She looked me straight in the eye and I couldn’t believe I could love something so much. I looked at Ryan and he had tears in his eyes. I had never been closer to him in my life. In this moment, I was complete. Everleigh started rooting around so I let her find my breast. She immediately started feeding and I felt so proud.
My mom, mother in law and sister came in and started taking pictures. I let them hold her after the nurses were done weighing and measuring. We all enjoyed her for about 2 hours and then it was time for me to move rooms and for Evie to get all of her tests done and get her first bath. Once I was in my room, we all chatted and laughed as I retold my “horrifying” experience. Everyone left to let us get some rest. I waited for them to bring Everleigh back while Ryan took a nap. As soon as she was back, I held her and fed her and laid her down to sleep. I got a full 3 hours of rest that night and woke up to the most beautiful girl in the world.
We left the morning of Christmas Eve, went home to take a nap and spent the night at my sisters house. I was so excited to spend Christmas morning with all of my family and my little Everleigh.
I am complete.