When we got to the hospital I asked if we could make it through one more contraction before I walked in. We signed in at the front desk, the lady asked me what number baby this was for me and when I told her my first, I could sense she was in no rush.
We sat in the waiting room and I felt good, for a few minutes. Then another contraction hit me and it felt like things were picking up. A nurse finally came and took me up to the unit, very slowly, in a wheel chair. I was feeling very hot and sweaty. When we got up to the unit I was having another contraction, I signed some papers at the front desk and they wheeled me into my room.
I got into the bed and they immediately attached two monitors to my belly to watch the baby’s heart rate and contractions. I was suddenly hit with another wave of nausea, good thing I still had my grocery bag in hand because I lost my red raspberry tea right then. The hot flash and nausea made me think, this might be transition!
The nurse then asked to do a cervical check. I told Jared, “Watch I will be 3.25 cm dilated.” The nurse shockingly said, “You are 6cm dilated and fully effaced!” I was excited, I had dilated three more cm since the previous day! They then had me fill out tons of paperwork. Jared was able to help me and it was hard because it seemed my contractions were coming back to back. Being on my back in the bed was very uncomfortable.
Heidi made it to the hospital shortly after this and immediately asked if I wanted her to run me a bath. That sounded fabulous. By the time we were done with paperwork and labs being drawn, the bath was ready. I got in and it felt so nice. Jared sat on a stool by my head and massaged my arm and neck. Heidi sat next to him. During contractions Jared did a great job encouraging and massaging me. Heidi was calmly reassuring me that I was doing a great job and at times when she could tell I was really in pain she was helping me do guided relaxation. She poured water over my belly during contractions and that really helped with the pain. She guided me to “float over the contractions” and to let myself become “jello.” This went on for two hours, but it only seemed like one to me.
Sara, Teri’s midwife student came to assist. They encouraged me to use get out of the tub and try a different position. Once I was out of the tub I started feeling pushy. They asked if I wanted to try and labor in the bed. I agreed but once I got on my back I had a lot of pelvic pressure and pain. They checked me and I was fully dilated. I tried many different positions but couldn’t find a comfortable one. Sara recommended I stand and do slow side lunges. She said this can help if there is a small amount of cervix that still needs to dilate. This actually felt good and I was able to breathe through the contractions.
I was starting to feel the urge to push so the they recommended I try the squatting bar on the bed. They got it out and Jared helped set it up, being the handyman he is! This was really uncomfortable for me and tiring. They raised the head of the bed and had me put my feet up on the push bars. I didn’t feel a strong urge to push and things slowed down. My contractions spaced out more and didn’t seem as painful when I was lightly pushing. It was about 7am when Lisa took over for Teri as my midwife.
She told me I was doing great, after 1 hour of pushing they could see the baby’s head. Lisa said I could stay at this pace or she could help me speed things up. I told her we could speed things up. They got a mirror out so I could see my progress. This really helped. Sara the student midwife used mineral oil to help me from tearing. They also used warm compress and pressure when I pushed to help. They dropped the bottom of the bed a bit so I was in a more inclined position, I started to feel the urge to push much stronger.
I opted out of constant fetal monitoring so they were periodically checking. The nurse checked me and they said the fetal heart rate was dropping a little more with each contraction. I heard Lisa ask for the nurse to call the NICU team in “just in case.” She looked at me and said, “Okay, were going to get this baby out with your next contraction.” That was all the motivation I needed, I took a deep breath and pushed my baby out. I felt a huge feeling of pressure and relief. We immediately heard the baby cry.
Once I opened my eyes I looked down and saw that my baby was a boy! I could not believe he was a boy! No one had announced it and Jared must not have noticed. I must have said one hundred times, “It’s a boy!?” I was convinced he was a girl because I thought I accidentally saw on the ultrasound nothing between the legs. I must have been looking at an arm pit ha!
He was perfect. His APGAR scores were 8 and 9. We let the cord stop pulsing and Jared cut the cord. We did skin to skin and Jonah was able to latch on and breastfeed for an hour. He then got weighed and measured. 7 pounds, 7 ounces, 20 inches long. 13.5 inch head circumference. Our baby was finally here!
I looked at Jared and asked “Is he a Jonah?” We had decided on the name Jonah Edward months before delivery. I loved the name in Sleepless in Seattle and was watching it one day. I mentioned it to Jared and he liked it to. I then thought that Jonah had all the letters of John, my father and grandfather’s names. I then thought Edward would be nice as a middle name to honor Jared’s dad and grandfather.
So, that is how we got our little Jonah Edward.
Paige Goldade - A Birth Boot Camp Instructor living and loving in South Dakota. She is a wife and mother of two rambunctious toddlers. She works as a childbirth educator and Board Certified Registered Nurse.