On January 8th, the morning of my due date, I woke up pretty bummed that the day we had been waiting and looking forward to for 9 long months was here, but our baby boy wasn't! For most of my pregnancy Billy was convinced Camden would be born late, but I never thought that and was pretty sure that he would be early! So, that morning I was determined to at least try to get things moving along myself...
I went to the mall and walked for 45 minutes.
I ate a big carton of fresh pineapple.
I made an eggplant parm recipe for dinner that is known to induce labor (rumor has it?)
I spent some quality time bouncing on an exercise ball....
and nada. Not a single contraction!
After dinner Billy confidently said, "don't worry, it's going to happen in the morning!", which has been the day he has guessed I would go into labor all along. I looked at him and just gave him a sassy smirk that I seem to do pretty well, doubting it.
The morning of January 9th rolls around and we were in the kitchen making breakfast when I felt a small gush of fluid. Since you can have increased discharge towards the end of your pregnancy and it was such a small amount, I honestly believed it was nothing and told Billy to go ahead and go to work. I sat down to eat breakfast and relax a bit, but then 20 minutes later when I stood up there was another gush...
I got excited deep down, but then tried talking myself out of it because I felt great and had zero contractions. I figured if it was the real deal I would be feeling contractions, and would feel a lot worse! I decided to call my doctors office anyways, and the nurse told me to head to L&D right away because she thought my water broke. My reaction? There's no way! It was almost like I didn't want to be THAT girl who went to the hospital thinking her water broke just to be told it wasn't, and to be sent home. However, after talking to Billy I decided I would go anyways but I was definitely still in the mindset that I would be sent home and would have to continue waiting.
Around 11am I drove myself to the hospital (after taking a long shower and hanging out with Rocky for a bit-acting like I wasn't in a rush at all), walked right in fully expecting to just come right back out and head home, but instead when the nurses checked my fluid two they came running into the room where I was hooked up and said, "you're having a baby today!"
Instantly I got so emotional, excited, and was shocked. Was I really going into labor on the exact morning that Billy predicted all along?! What are the chances of this? I called Billy and had happy tears in my eyes when he picked up the other line. I told him it was in fact my water and that we would get to meet Camden very soon! I cried for the whole two minute conversation because I just couldn't believe it was time to meet our son. Billy was escastic, but surprisingly really calm (you know, since he predicted this all along ;)) and he left work, rushed to our house to get our bags, and then headed over to the hospital to meet me.
Around 1230pm, they transferred me to our room that I would labor in and Billy arrived shortly after. Something that was really coincidental that we noticed right away was that our room number was 19...the date was 1-9...and Billy's hockey/lucky number was 19...it was like everything just fit together so perfectly and this was exactly how everything was meant to happen.
It wasn't until around 3pm that I was in active labor and started having contractions, but I was still only 2 cm dilated. My contractions were coming 2-4 minutes apart, but they weren't getting stronger so unfortunately our nurse recommended pitocin (the one thing I didn't want!). It was hard to believe my water broke, but yet I still needed the drugs to get things going. Ultimately, meeting my baby was far more important so I quickly came to terms with the pitocin.
For most of the time, I chose to labor and take the contractions standing up walking or bouncing on an exercise ball. I hated sitting in the bed and felt like I could handle the contractions better standing up or sitting on the ball. Around 6pm, I was 6 cm dilated and requested the magic epidural. I was told by our nurse that they would need to check my platelets again (they were checked when I originally checked in the hospital in the morning, and my levels were definitely high enough to get the epidural, but since it had been so long they needed to re-check them), which made me really nervous but we honestly figured my levels would be just fine since they were hours earlier...
Except they weren't. The results from the lab came up on the monitor on the computer screen in our room where the nurse was standing and (from what Billy says) the nurse looked at them and ran out of the room. Billy stood up and went over to look then a look came across his face like he had seen a ghost. Immediately I begged him to tell me what was going on, and that's when he told me my platelet count dropped to below the epidural level.
Cue Katie meltdown. I started sobbing, figuring that I was about to have an natural birth and that I wouldn't be able to handle it. The nurse came back in the room a few minutes later and kindly told me that it was the anesthesiologists call to give me the epidural or not, and we had to wait for his decision. It was the longest 30 minutes of my life, but when the nurse came in and told me "you can get it!" I let out the deepest sigh of relief and I'm pretty sure no words have EVER sounded better.
Shortly after I got the epidural, things started progressing pretty quickly. Billy was such a good partner the whole time and sat next to me massaging my back and neck, which felt wonderful and took my mind off the contractions.
At midnight I started pushing 3 sets of 10. I expected the contractions to be the worst part of labor, but looking back I think for me that pushing was far more exhausting. I didn't realize how much upper body strength it would take and quickly I felt so tired. I decided to use the mirror to give me an extra boost of motivation because the doctor said we could see his head at that point and we were getting close! With every push, I just reminded myself that I could do this (Billy also coaching me on the side!) and the harder I pushed the sooner my son would be in my arms. After an hour and twenty minutes of pushing, our little miracle Camden was born.
He came out without a single cry, but the doctor and nurses assured me he was perfectly healthy and immediately placed him on my chest for skin-to-skin. Those were, by far, the best minutes of my entire life. He glanced up at me with his perfect little eyes and I was overcome with happiness, joy, and LOVE.
I remember counting all of his fingers and toes, kissing his little perfect button nose, gazing at him up and down, and feeling like my world was complete.
But it just got better from there. Seeing Billy hold our son for the first time was more than I ever imagined it to be! It's like something changed in him right when Camden was born, and his role as a Dad just took right over. I could've watched him hold our son forever that night.
Happy Birthday Camden James! Thank you for changing our world for the better. We love you so much!