March 23rd started off like any other Sunday. We were fresh off the heels of our Tennessee house hunting trip and I had big plans of unpacking and laundry and grocery shopping.
Sometime mid-morning I began to get noticeable Braxton-Hicks contractions. Nothing too out of the ordinary for me but they were a bit persistent unless I was laying down. So my plans of unpacking and going to the store changed and I spent as much time as possible playing with Parker while laying sideways on the couch.
I wasn't too concerned because just one week prior I had some worrisome Braxton Hicks as well. They showed up after we drove nine hours, over the course of two days, to go house hunting in Tennessee. Following the drive, and moving hotels twice, I found myself resting in our hotel room, wishing those Braxton Hicks contractions away. After a lot of rest and what felt like a million gallons of water, they stopped and I hardly had anymore the following week despite all the activity of our house hunting experience.
So now, a week later, on Sunday, March 23rd, I chalked up my Braxton Hicks to the long car ride we had taken home just the day before. However, around 6 p.m. when the contractions hadn't gone away for most of the day, I called our mid-wife. Since I had a routine appointment scheduled for the next morning, she offered to call in a prescription for a medicine that should reduce the contractions, and then she would see me in the morning at my appointment. The only pharmacy Honey and I found that was open on a Sunday past 6 p.m. was forty minutes away. When I called the midwife back to give her the phone number of the pharmacy Honey already had one foot out the door.
Before Honey could crank up the car, we had a turning point... As I was speaking to the midwife I also used the bathroom (helloooo, millions gallons of water?!) and noticed a spot of blood. I told her immediately and she changed her mind. She asked me to come on in to the hospital and get checked out. Given my history, then the contractions all day, and now blood, she thought that would be better.
Thank God I saw that blood while I was talking to her! Had Honey left to drive 80 minutes round rip to get that prescription, I would have been holding Baby Grant in my arms when he returned home.
The midwife asked me to pack a bag because there was a chance I would be staying so they could watch me for 24-hours. She also mentioned she wanted me to hurry as safely as my body would allow. I explained that even though we had lined up some wonderful friends to help take care of Parker whenever "go-time" came, that I had not yet packed his bag (after all we were still somewhere around seven weeks until we were supposed to be "ready"!) and that would take me twice as long to get his things together. She said not to bother to pack his bag but to just bring him along with us. She said that worst case I would be admitted for 24 hours and my husband and son would go home.
As I gathered my things and packed my bag things changed dramatically. Since I went from lying down to up and moving, the contractions went from a bit of an annoyance to doubling me over with pain. I had to stop and lie down to breathe through a few contractions.
The drive to the hospital 40 miles away is a bit of a blur. I reclined the seat a far as I could and I found out later that Honey drove between 80 and 100 miles per hour the whole way. Between contractions I felt tired and exhausted but I could at least talk. But when a contraction hit I was yelling out in pain. Honey placed a phone call to his parents and to my brother to give them a heads up. My parents were in Israel preparing to fly home after a 10-day-tour, so we were unable to reach them immediately.
During the drive my contractions got worse and I felt a strong urge to push. Since I had an epidural with Parker, I had never felt the pregnancy "urge-to-push" before. My husband, who was so strong and calm and just so perfect, was sweetly encouraging me not to push. I also felt liquid leaving my body and I was afraid that I was peeing all over my leather seats.
Honey called the mid-wife to confirm where we were to go upon arrival and to ask that someone meet us with a wheelchair since I would be unable to walk and he would need to go park and get Parker out.
We made it to the hospital in record time! I was wheeled to the Labor and Delivery triage while he and Parker went to park the car.
When I got to the triage room the nurse asked me to get on the table and into the gown. Between contractions I told her I could not do either alone. My contractions were coming so fast and hard that it was all I could do to rest in between each one. The nurse attempted to change me into the gown but all she could do was from the waist down. She checked me and I was at 10 centimeters so she called for assistance and announced it was GO TIME!
About that same time Michael, carrying Parker, met us in the hall and heard her announce that we were going to have a baby! I asked if there was time for an epidural to which about three nurses said NO!
The next thing I knew we were in labor and delivery...