When I last left you, I was waiting for The Kraken to arrive and preparing to follow Cabin Girl and move into my parent’s house across the state. We thought for sure that, since Mr. Monkey was 5 days overdue, this baby would make its debut no later than September 5th. We were hoping to have the baby, give me a few days to get out of the hospital and start healing, then move the rest of us across the state so we could have a week to settle in before the Captain had to leave to start his new job.
I was having lots of early labor signs, so a few days before my due date the midwife stripped my membranes. My parents were visiting for Labor Day weekend so we figured it would be a great time to have a baby and, on Friday night, tried inducing with Castor Oil. In the wee hours of Saturday morning I thought I had a bloody show and was having consistent contractions 8-10 minutes apart. Knowing how my last labor had gone, I decided to lay down and try to sleep. My contractions fizzled out… after we had told my mother in law to make the drive across state because I thought I was in labor and didn’t want her to miss it.
We took lots of walks, used a rebozo, tried another dose of Castor Oil (Sunday night) and crawled/baby dumped a lot, getting contractions but nothing became consistent. Tuesday rolled around and, being 3 days overdue with on and off contractions, I went in for a progress check. Not quite 3 cm and about halfway effaced, I went home planning on trying Castor Oil for the third and final time and continuing our walking/baby dumping regimen.
Wednesday went by with nothing changing and Thursday I woke up feeling no different. Time was seriously running out. We decided that if I hadn’t progressed any more that we would pack up and haul ass to my parents’ house.
Well, absolutely no progress. I was now 5 days overdue.
On our way home we picked up a Uhaul and a couple of great friends came and helped us load it up. We officially went from ‘Make labor happen’ to ‘Keep labor from happening’ mode, so I wasn’t allowed to do a whole lot, which was fine, because one of our helpers brought his baby girl who I happily kept occupied.
We made plans for my best friend, who is also my doula, to haul ass in the big car with the kids and I while Captain and his mom packed up the last few things and clean up a bit and then follow us. With all the hospitals mapped out along the way and very few potty stops, we made it through a 5 hour drive without having a baby! Success!
Once everyone was out at my parents’ house, we went back into ‘Make labor happen’ mode and decided to spend the next day at the county fair. 8 days overdue, lots of walking and greasy fair food should do it, right?!
WRONG. Since no labor was forthcoming, we drove my friend to the airport, said an incredibly difficult goodbye, and headed back to my parents house to wait for my appointment, with the Dr. that delivered Cabin Girl, on Monday afternoon.
He was stunned that I was back, having known that I had moved across state since he’s also my mom’s Dr., and amazed that I had made it 9 days past my due date with my 4th baby. I had still not progressed passed almost 3 cm, so we discussed having my water broken that night, at the hospital I had delivered Cabin Girl. We went back to my parents’ house to settle the kids in and wait for the hospital to call us in, which didn’t take long.
7:30 found us walking into the hospital and my water was finally broken at 10pm. It took forever to get my records sent over from across state. We walked the halls, bounced on a yoga ball, and I slept while I could. 6 am found us with still no progression.
By 10 am, Captain and I had gone through all the information and suggestions from the Dr and nurses and decided to start pitocin. After a teary phone call with my doula, we were hooked up and settling in for a long afternoon of being plugged in to the IV and monitors. Thankfully, my nurse knew that I wanted to labor and deliver as naturally as possible, so she encouraged me to use the labor ball and checked my progress without insisting I lay on my back.
By 1 o’clock I was at 6 cm and the contractions were definitely making the transition into hard labor. It only took an hour to get to 8 cm, at which point the nurse turned off the pitocin like we had discussed, hoping my body was finally in charge and ready to have the baby. I took the chance to lay on the bed for a little while, which ended up being detrimental; An hour after turning the pitocin off and I was still at an 8 so we turned the pitocin back on and I got back onto the birthing ball. My mom and mother in law had arrived by then to support us since my doula couldn’t be there.
3:30 was another progress check because I started feeling like I needed to push. We weren’t 100% complete yet, so I went between sitting on the ball and leaning on the bed while Captain rubbed my back and sitting on the edge of the bed and leaning against Captain. He, as always, did an amazing job of supporting and encouraging me. Around that time my dad also arrived, which my mom told me, but it didn’t register until after baby had arrived. My contractions reached a peak that had me crying out like I had never done before and I hit the point that I was sobbing for pain relief. Exhausted and just so, so, so done being pregnant and in pain, I asked the nurse to request a local for me, because I knew the hardest part was still to come. As soon as she finished talking to the Dr on her walkie-talkie type phone I felt the baby shift and knew that it was time to push.
I climbed onto the bed and tried to hold still while she checked me again. She left her hand inside me to prevent my pushing while she spoke to the on-call Dr again. Something along the lines of “Get over here NOW” and another call to the nursing desk “We’re having a baby!”
She removed her hand and with the next contraction I felt the baby surge down, exclaimed “That Dr isn’t going to make it” and hollered at the top of my lungs while the baby’s head crowned. Nurses swarmed into the room and I pushed again, still yelling, feeling slightly panicked until Captain got my attention and told me to stop pushing. Focusing on him, I was able to hear the nurses tell me when to push again and our second girl and final baby was born, blue, into the hands of my nurse.
The cord had been wrapped around her neck, which is why they had made me stop pushing. We only had a few moments of concern before she started breathing, but there is nothing more confusing and terrifying than having a nurse place a blue baby on you.
The Dr came to deliver the placenta, declared that I needed no stitches, congratulated me, and left. I had never seen him before that moment, and will likely never see him again.
The nurses gave me a double dose of cervidil and emptied the remaining pitocin into me to stop my massive bleeding.
After I was cleaned up and she was weighed, measured, and wrapped, we were able to finally start getting to know each other.
Now, our family is complete, and we are all smitten with our stubborn little Kraken.