Charlotte Grace took us by surprise and came 11 days early! We couldn't be happier to see her, so we are fine with her messing up all our weekend plans. Both of my babies are asleep in their beds, which is a freaking miracle, so I wanted to write down her birth story before I forget.
I went to the Dr on Monday morning, but they said there was no progress so we really thought I would make it through the weekend. We made all these plans and were even supposed to have my baby shower on Saturday and go out for our anniversary next week. However, Grace took us by complete surprise on Thursday morning. At about 4:30 am I woke up and my water had broken. We called up our friends who live down the street from Jonah's school and took Jonah over to their house for a few hours so they could take him to school when it opened. It really worked out perfectly since I knew he was going to be playing at school like he does every day and didn't have to worry about him at all! Then we went ahead and headed to the hospital. I still wasn't having contractions and we had no idea how long it would be, but I knew I had to do the antibiotics for the group B strep so we wanted to make sure I had time for that.
When I got into triage, the nurse who brought us in was the same nurse who delivered Jonah! We were so happy to see her (though she had no idea who we were of course) and we asked her to stay and deliver Jonah but she somehow got out of that one ;) They checked me and said I was at 7 cm! They were freaking out and thought I was about to have a baby, but I assured them this same progression happened with my first labor and I was sure we still had plenty of time. They admitted me of course, and I met my new nurse, Heather, who would turn out to be the best! I have been so lucky with my labor and delivery nurses, I want to buy those girls dinner.
They gave me the antibiotic for the group B strep, but I was actually lucky that I had a recent reaction to penicillin so they gave me another drug instead. This antibiotic just got pushed into my IV so I didn't have to sit on an IV for 4 hourse like I would have had to do with penicillin. It was a blessing in disguise (though it was REALLY nasty for the few minutes it was getting pushed in), because I did it really fast and then I was good to go for 8 hours! Much better situation for someone who is doing natural labor.
At about 10 am they checked me again, and I was only at 8 cm, then again at 12 noon still only at 8 cm. They were getting concerned that I wasn't progressing, although I could feel my contractions coming closer together and more regular. I tried to reassure the doctors again that my first labor was very similar and I knew things would start picking up with a little more time. They wanted me to start pitocin, but I told them I just wanted a little more time because I knew things were progressing. My nurse was awesome and really advocated for me to stick to my plan and not let them push me into pitocin yet. She never questioned my judgement or weather I would be able to labor and deliver naturally! She kept telling the doctors "She has done this before, she's prepared and she knows what is happening." She was so awesome to believe in me so much and fight those residents for me :)
Finally at about 1:30 my contractions started picking up and it was time to kick my dad out of the room so I could concentrate! He went and ran some errands for us and picked up Jonah at school. Nobody bothered me about pitocin after that because it was obvious things were starting to move along. I don't know time frames after that because I was really having to concentrate at this point, but at one point I had Ted go get the doctors because I really felt like I needed to push. They came in and said I was dilated, but she was still a little high up but they were going to start getting everything ready to push. It was still some time of waiting after that, which turned out to be good because I think it gave her a little more time to get lower. While it was REALLY tough, I think it was a little easier this time because I had been through it before. I knew when my contractions were at their worst and I just had to get through them for a while longer before we would be able to meet our girl! I guess I just had more perspective this time and it helped me through it.
Finally the doctors came back in and checked me and said, Ok let's get this stuff set up NOW! I pushed for maybe 5-10 minutes and then she was there! After I pushed 1 or 2 times, everybody said "I can see her head full of dark hair!" so I knew we were really close though I couldn't believe it happened so fast! When she was born they put her on my chest and she just screamed the whole time! She has some good lungs. They took her for a second and weighed her (7 lb 10 oz) and took her footprint, and then gave her right back. They took a while to stitch me up and the resident kept saying "almost finished" even though he wasn't. I finally told him he was a liar and just tell me when he was actually almost finished. I'm not sure those doctors knew what to think of me.
When they finally finished I got to feed her and she did pretty good for her first time! Now she is a champion eater. Then someone came in and told the medical team there was someone else ready to push so they all cleared out. I finally learned that person had to have an emergency c-section, so everyone was so busy they forgot about us for about 2 hours! We just got to hang out with Gracie the whole time. Finally I had to go to the bathroom, so Ted went and found a nurse to unhook me from my IV and help me up for the first time. When they came in they realized we still had the baby and no one had been in to move us to another room yet! We didn't really care because it was extra time we got to spend with her before they take her away for awhile! I was able to get up so easily as well, because I had been sitting there recovering for a couple of hours. They just wheeled both of us (Grace in my arms) down to our new room and took her to the nursery from there. She has passed all her tests with flying colors and is doing so well! We prayed for so long for the day we could say she is here and healthy, and are in awe of how God has delivered her to us. It was truly an amazing day, and has been an amazing experience being parents to these two little miracles so far.