Birth Story Week: #1, in which I puke in a bush

As baby number seven's due date fast approaches, I figured I ought to do a Birth Story Week of all six births so far.

If you are a male person who reads my blog (hi Dad!) you might want to consider skipping this week. There may be rushing fluids and wooziness.

Here's birth story number one:

I was due with my first on June 26, 2002. I value punctuality. So I was not at all surprised to be awakened by my first contraction at 12:01 am on June 26. Of course, it was my first baby, so I wasn't 100% sure it was a contraction. But it sure seemed like one. So, despite all the good advice I had read about letting my husband get some rest, I immediately poked him until he half woke up and reminded him that our car seat was not properly installed in the car.

He did not appear particularly troubled by this information, and went right back to sleep. I tried to get some rest, but mostly couldn't. So, I went downstairs and cleaned up the house and watched Men in Black.

By around four in the morning the knowledge that my husband was sleeping while I was having contractions AND the car seat wasn't installed was more than I could handle, so I woke him up. He still couldn't recognize the importance of the car seat situation and thought maybe he should stay with me and we should go for a walk or something.

So we walked and walked until that became unpleasant and we came back inside. My water still hadn't broken, but I was sure this was the real thing. I had read some stuff, I knew there would be a mucus plug and a "bloody show" which didn't sound that bad. What I didn't know that for me "show" = so. much. blood. (Hey, I tried to warn you guys.) So the bathtub felt nice, but soon got pretty gross.

It was early morning now, 6 am or so, and I was having some pretty serious contractions, but we didn't want to leave for the hospital because they weren't like the book said they should be. They seemed strong, but were shorter and farther apart than they were "supposed" to be.

So, we stayed home and I laid down on the bed where I discovered that, like Kirstie Alley, I just wanted to have this baby without you touching me. I wanted my husband there, but no back rubs or pressure or any of that. My most distinct memory from the whole labor was laying there thinking, "I can do this, I will get through this. But I will NEVER do this again." Of course, I used to mentally quit the cross country team in the middle of every race. So I'm really not to be trusted on that sort of thing.

I was unnaturally worried that I would show up at the hospital at 3 cm and all the nurses would point at me and throw their heads back and laugh. But eventually the husband prevailed upon me to head over there, just in case. At the time, we lived in student housing on the Stanford campus and let's just say I wasn't the only gal looking kind of haggard in that parking lot at 7:30 am. I also probably wasn't the only girl to puke in that bush.

When we got to the hospital, the nurses ignored us for a bit as maternity ward nurses are wont to do. But once they finally checked me things started happening in a hurry. I was rushed to a room, pushed for a half an hour or so and baby Jack was born at about 9 am.

So, nine hours of labor, no complications, 7 lbs 8 oz. We went home from the hospital that evening, because I can't stand hospitals. (Seriously, what is with all the waking you up in hospitals? I just had a baby people, my blood pressure is fine, I'm just TIRED.)

The husband did eventually install the car seat, which he had thrown in the back of the car, box and all. And then once we got home, we still had to figure out what to do with this little person. But that's another story!

Check back tomorrow for birth story number two . . .