January 18th- 39 weeks pregnant I went to my weekly appointment with my midwife. By this point, I had been having Braxton hicks contractions daily for WEEKS and was really just feeling done. After my appointment the week before, I opted to schedule myself for an induction on the 21st, just in case, and really more for my mental sanity of having an actual end date. At my appointment, I asked my midwife is she could strip my membranes, just to see what happens. She said she would if the on call midwife at the hospital okayed it…. but we never heard back. So she checked me, I was dilated to not quite a 4. She offered to strip my membranes Sunday, if she had time (she was the in call midwife that day) and said she would text me if she had time. The rest if Friday and Saturday were all pretty uneventful. Saturday I snuck in one last workout with my boys, just for fun and spent the day just hanging out.
January 20th: Sunday morning I got up and get me and the boys ready for church. Ken was working so Dani came to church with us. We walked in and took our usually seats, armed with goldfish crackers and our books when about 10 minutes into the meeting I got a call from my midwife asking if I still wanted my membranes stripped. I hesitated because I didn’t want to haul everyone over to the office but after calling Ken, I hopped in my car, leaving the boys with Dani and headed to the office. Let me just add, if you haven’t ever gotten your membranes stripped, it’s not the most pleasant experience…. but totally worth it in this case After meeting with my midwife, I headed back to church, sat in Sunday school for about an hour then headed home. She stripped my membranes around 11. I got the boys down for naps around 1 and started noticing some regular contractions around 2. In an attempt to keep myself distracted and not get too excited about contractions, I decided to start a new crochet project (and who knows when I will finish it now. When Ken got home from work a little after 4, I was having contractions about 8-10 min apart for about 30-40 seconds, depending on what I was doing. Nothing to exciting or unbearable but they were definitely there. We headed to Sunday dinner at my mom’s and I kept praying that my contractions would continue. They did, but they were still tolerable. We got home, put the boys to bed around 8:00ish. By this point, I didn’t trust that my contractions were enough to take us to the hospital. I called the on call midwife and she agreed that I needed to wait until they were closer, especially while laying down and relaxing. We called Ken’s mom to come over, “just in case” and got ready for bed. Ken fell asleep quickly (which often happens when you go to work so early) and I laid in bed, timing contractions…. until I got bored. I think I stopped using my contraction timer around 10 PM maybe…. because looking at my phone made it hard to relax between contractions. The progressively got stronger and closer together until around 11:45 PM I felt like we needed to get going. I woke Ken up, told him that they were much stronger and we needed to leave. He helped my put my shoes on and we headed out. 12:15 AM, January 21, we were admitted to the hospital. Between contractions they got my basic info and walked me to a room. My midwife came and check me, I was at a 7. At my request, she broke my water around 12:30 am. With 4 other nurses in the room trying to place an IV (that took 4 tries), collecting health info, and contractions now coming hard and fast, things seemed to go a million miles a minute. Ken and my midwife were awesome and helping me labor on my side and providing counter pressure to deal with the contractions. Not long after, I felt like I needed to push. I tried to push on my side, but that just wasn’t working for me so I moved to my back (where I was more familiar as this is how i delivered my previous 2 babies). Pushing this time was hard. I really don’t remember it being this hard or PAINFUL (but I guess we all forget that right? ) She was much more forward than my boys were and I had to work quite a bit harder to get her down into my pelvis. I really don’t know how long I pushed but I know that at 1:15 am, my sweet baby Jolie was born and placed on my chest. She was hairy, and slimy, and perfect, she let out a little cry and then was calm as could be. Ken cut the cord after a few minutes and she was doing remarkably well. I needed some stitches (also a normal thing for me) and since that part is challenging for me, Ken took baby girl so I could focus on getting that taken care of. We stayed in our delivery room for a few hours until they had a recovery room ready for us. Jolie started nursing right a way, without any issues and had her evaluation by the nurses before we were moved. We stayed in the hospital until Wednesday morning, and the rest of the stay was gratefully uneventful. We were definitely grateful to be home and working towards figuring out this “family of 5” thing. (More of which I will share in another post!) We are so happy to have this sweet girl as part of our family. She was the missing piece we didn’t realize we were missing and I am so grateful I get to be her mom!