I was so relieved when Tuesday morning finally arrived. As thrilled as I was that we would be meeting Ruthie later that day, I was even more thrilled to know that I did not go into labor at home. Because Nora's delivery was SO fast (less than three hours), I was terrified that labor would begin at home and end...well...on the Interstate. In rush hour. While induced labors are not for everyone, I am so thankful that God graciously allowed us to have a scheduled labor.
What follows is an account of my labor and delivery and, while I plan to keep this completely PG, I know some are uninterested in the details of another woman's birth story. Feel free to skip this if you'd just rather not know.
We arrived at the hospital at 6:00, and we were immediately brought back to our room. We had a delightful nurse - Jennifer - and everyone was ready to get things started. After I changed into a very glamorous hospital gown, we got prepped for my IV. This was the worst part of my delivery with Phoebe...and actually, it was the worst part with Ruthie, too. I'd learned to request lidocaine (ladies... ASK FOR IT...it makes a huge difference) before getting the IV, but I evidently did not learn how to not pass out. The lidocaine made the experience pretty much pain-free... but Sissy Sarah blacked out for about ten seconds during the process.
The doctor came in to break my water just as I was starting to come around, so we decided to wave her off for a few minutes. About half an hour later, my primary OB came in and we got things going. I started having some mild, regular contractions. At 7:30, we started the pitocin drip.
Since I was already 3 and thinning when I checked in, I was cleared for an epidural as soon as I started having regular contractions. By 8:15, the anesthesiologist was in my room. Since the IV made me so woozy, we prayed before the procedure and, thankfully, I did not pass out. Things briefly got spotty, but I believe they gave me some epinephrine pretty quickly and I felt better rapidly. Thankfully, the epidural took without issue.
Labor after that was pretty uneventful. I progressed a little more slowly than with Nora, but honestly... Nora's delivery was like a Nascar race. We made our delivery pool, Michael had breakfast, checked some email, watched the snow (yes, snow!) fall... I was thankful for the chance to relax. At 11, my nurse informed me that she was going to take a brief lunch; she felt like we'd be close to ready when she returned.
And we were! At 11:40, we were more than ready to have a baby. The doctor was called, the room was prepped, and I got to lay very still. My doctor was also called to deliver the girl in the room next to me...thankfully, we got to go first. (I don't think Ruthie was willing to wait any longer!) At 12:00, the doctor walked in; at 12:04, Ruthie was born. She couldn't wait to get here!
Ruthie is the biggest of our babies, weighing in at a whopping 6 pounds, 7 ounces and 19.25 inches long. As soon as I saw her, I couldn't believe how much she looked like Phoebe did at birth. We are so tremendously grateful for a healthy and uneventful delivery! God has been so gracious to us in childbirth.
My recovery has been relatively pain-free. After going through a very difficult recovery after Phoebe's delivery, and recovering at Children's with Nora... I'm extremely thankful for a quiet recovery at home. Mops and Pops have been here to help with the transition, and I have no idea how I'll transition to normal life... but I'm thankful that I've got another week before I have to think about that! For now, we're all enjoying the newest little addition to our family!