While pregnant with our first baby, Isabelle, I had LOTS of ideas about how things should and would go during labor and delivery. At the time we were living in Rhode Island and although we were not the "home birth" type we were very into having a completely natural birth within a birth center. In our case, the birth center was like a 1 bedroom house on the first floor of the hospital. I guess that is good because that eliminated the need for transport in the event things did not go as planned. Which of course they did not. Actually, they could not have gone very much less as planned and still have a healthy, happy baby and mommy. We did start there of course, but after many hours we were sent up to labor & delivery in the hospital where I then got the epidural, and pitocin and all the garbage I had been very much against. Then 30, yes 30, hours after labor began Isabelle was born via c-section once it was determined that neither she nor I were in good enough shape to take the risk in continuing to labor.
Having had a previous c-section I was strongly encouraged to have another this time around. Actually, I did express a strong desire not to go that route, but after hearing the reasons and risks I finally decided that this was our best option. This was something that I had a very difficult time with. It literally took years before I was OK with the trauma of Isabelle's birth and here I was planning to go through this voluntarily this time around. It really was not until I had to make this choice that I realized it was fine that Isabelle was a c-section baby because she was perfect and healthy and I got to enjoy her. Then, I realized that regardless of how the boys arrived the only thing that really mattered was that they arrived safely and that we all were healthy in the end. Since this was the case once we were into the third trimester a date was set for the c-section... this part was a little odd to me. I did not like the idea of showing up at the hospital and saying OK here we are, so, I prayed that they would decide to come before this date. Not super early, but like a week or a few days before this would have been perfect!
As we inched closer to the arrival date I packed for myself, Isabelle & the boys. Jason, well, I figured as a big boy he could pack his own stuff. So, he in his Jason style, waited. I mean, he had time Isabelle was 5 days over due, and I had really shown very few signs that labor was approaching. So, what's the hurry?
One would think that once you have experienced labor you would know if you were experiencing it again. Well, that, is where you would be wrong. Two days before we were set to arrive in the hospital for the boys delivery I showered (thank God), bathed Isabelle, read books & stories and had a "normal" day at home while Jason went to work. He got home in time to make us dinner, and asked as he did every day, "are we going to have babies today?" I said, "Well, maybe" this made him wonder since I had said the same the night I went into labor with Isabelle. Although, not enough so that he did not finish making dinner and we still ate together. I told him that I had been feeling a lot of pressure, but not really contractions. The pressure was more in the area of where my pelvic bones had split and separated (this happened in week 16). At some point I told him to call the doctor because I was feeling a lot of pressure and my pelvic bones were really hurting. He dialed and I talked, Of course, my doctor was not the doctor on call. It was a doctor that was new to the practice, and an old high school friend. She did really well with the fact that she knew me, but it took me a little longer... The idea of the doctor delivering having been a high school classmate was hard to wrap my head around. Finally, she asked me questions about my pain/pressure. I answered and then she asked if it seemed to come & go. I thought about it and it actually had, but I refused to admit it at that point. She said, "well, keep an eye on it and if it seems to come & go call back." So, we did, and I started deliberately noticing a pattern.
One thing that I have not mentioned is that my husband is a pro under pressure. I mean he is not the least bit stressed out, he does not panic easily, and he is able to stay calm and focused. EXCEPT when I was in labor. For some reason if one of the kids, he or I get hurt or sick, he's the calm, cool & collected guy, but labor causes a panic that is indescribable. When he realized this was, in fact, "it", he started running around the house throwing stuff into bags muttering "But we have TWO MORE DAYS!" I am not sure what the "stuff" was, but he was frantically packing! It sort of reminded me of those contests where you could go into a store and grab as much stuff of the shelves as possible in 5 minutes. This of course created a feeling of, hmmm, excitement mixed with panic in our then three and a half year old daughter. She then found a paper bag and started throwing random things into it to take to Meme's . By this time I had tried halting the operation because I had already packed a treat bag and a clothes bag for her and did not want an overwhelming amount of "stuff" packed for her. I convinced them both that daddy only needed a change of clothes and his phone. I had packed the rest already and Jason could come back for anything he wanted later.
He then was to take Isabelle to his mother's while I got myself together in time for him to pick me up and go to the hospital. As I said before, birth does not always go as planned... What really happened was, Jason and Isabelle got loaded into the car drove down the driveway and I decided to get ready... When My water broke!