The days leading up to Anna’s birth were wrought with uncertainty, there was a hurricane coming and with our hospital being an hour away, we didn’t know what do when and if I went into labor. Should we go to the hospital ahead of time just in case I went into labor at the height of the storm and couldn’t make it to the hospital? Do I stay home and take our chances, going to our local hospital if labor did start? We went back and forth on what to do. We finally decided to just stay home and ride the storm out.
Hurricane Earl was forecasted to hit our area the night of Thursday September 2nd so when I woke up that morning leaking fluid, I was relieved that all our questions were answered – we were heading to the hospital. They say that the pressure change from these large weather systems can put women into labor and by the looks at the waiting room that day, I would say that was a true statement.
I woke up at 6:45am that morning and immediately knew something was different – I felt wet and when I got up, I noticed a spot on the sheets. I went to the bathroom to see if my water had in fact broken. After a few minutes of walking around, I knew that I was leaking. My first call was to Matt, who for the first time all week, didn’t answer his phone. I wasn’t contracting or anything so I was pretty calm, I just wanted to get Jack taken care of, get our stuff ready and head to the hospital. I finally got up with Matt about an hour later who breathlessly asked me how much time we had. I laughed and told him to take his time, nothing was happening yet. We left the house about 45 min later, arriving to the hospital around 11am.
I got checked in and they put me into a triage room to asses s me. They tested to make sure that my water had in fact broken (which it had), hooked me up to some monitors, took my blood, put in an iv and left me to wait for a room. They checked me to see how much I was dilated and I was only at 2cm, which is what I was a few days before at my doctor’s appt. We waited and waited and waited. Each time they came in to tell me that they had a room for me, another woman who was in active labor would get it. Which was fine since my body wasn’t progressing at all on its own, no regular contractions, just leaking fluid. My butt was so sore though, sitting on that gurney all day really did me in.
We were finally moved into a labor and delivery room around 6pm, 7 hours later. At 6:40pm I was started on a low dose of pitocin to get my body contracting. I tried to get comfortable – I sat on a birthing ball for awhile, stood around and then got back in bed. It was hard because each time I would move or get up there as a gush of fluid, not a fun feeling. I wasn't allowed to walk because I was hooked up to all these monitors. The contractions were coming but they weren’t too unbearable yet. By 10pm, I was 3cm and by 11:30 I was at 4cm, 60% effaced, at a -2 station. This is when things started to go REALLY fast. I had asked for an epidural because the contractions were starting to get really painful and close together. It took almost an hour to get it because they were so busy. They had given me some IV meds while I was waiting but they did nothing for the pain. I got the epidural and they checked me again – I was at 6cm, it was 12:15am. The next hour was kind of a blur – I was in a lot of pain, even with the epidural, the contractions were coming so fast. Matt’s hand was probably numb from me squeezing it so hard. I remember looking at matt right after the nurse had left, telling him that he needed to go get her because the baby was coming out. When they came in to check me, I was 10cm and indeed ready to push. It got crazy in there pretty fast – they converted the bed, got the doctor and baby nurses ready. I only pushed for about 10 min and she was out. Anna Claire was born at 1:19am on Friday September 3rd, right in the middle of Hurricane Earl. She weighed 7lbs 13oz and was 19 ½ in long. They put her on my chest when she was born and Matt cut the cord. She was so beautiful and looked just like Jack. We spent a few hours snuggling in labor and delivery and then we were moved to a postpartum room. We were released a few days later, finally a family of four.