Saturday, August 18, 2012

Introducing...Juliette Vera Ancer

Wednesday around 2 AM, I started having contractions; I'd been very restless all night, actually.  The contractions lasted until 6 AM, then they stopped when I decided to get out of bed and work on breakfast, dinner, and laundry.  Great! I was used to this dance... I wasn't sure if Wednesday would be THE day, but I wanted to leave the house prepared :).  My bags were already packed; I try to think 2 steps ahead (but I can't believe I almost missed my own labor...details to come haha!).

I was convinced these pains were just typical BH contractions because they stopped and there wasn't much happening until around 5:30.  Thankfully, family was visiting earlier in the week, so Mirabel was entertained and I was able to get a good nap in.  If there's one thing I learned since Mirabel's birth, it's to take as many naps as possible, whenever you can!  You never know when your next restful night will be with kiddos around.  I wanted to stock up on sleep because I knew Juliette would be arriving within the next few DAYS.  Yep, days.  I didn't think she'd be here until this weekend.  

Jose was going to stay home, but I told him to go in; I wanted him to really be able to enjoy being home when the baby arrived and not have to worry about work piling up.  So he left.  All day, I felt a little different, but I figured my body was just gearing up.  I called the doctor at around 5, after talking to my mom about what I was experiencing, and she wanted me to go to L and D and get checked out.  I thought both the doctor and my mom were just being overly cautious.  I wasn't even planning on taking my hospital bag.  I guess I was in complete denial?  I just didn't want to get my hopes up.  I was also anxious about leaving Mirabel alone, I even shed a few tears about it in the car on the way to the hospital :(.  Then I realized I was giving her a gift, a new sister to play with!  I felt less guilty when I thought about it that way.

Jose came home around 6:30 or so to take me to the hospital.  He also felt we should bring our bags and the car seat.  He was convinced I was in labor.  At this point, I was getting contractions again, but they were only coming every 6 to 10 minutes; I still wasn't so sure.  They were getting stronger, but not strong enough to stop Jose and I from exchanging jokes back and forth in the car... That is, until he hit a speed bump during a pretty strong contraction.  I quieted down then.

BUT I still didn't want to get all the bags down from the car when we arrived at the hospital.  Jose was so sure we'd be admitted; I thought they'd send us home until at least midnight (see how my mind was slowly changing about this whole thing? ;).  After all, my first labor WAS about 26 hours long.  I was hoping for something under 20 hours with this one.  I thought that was a reasonable expectation.

We take the elevator up to L and D and the doctor on call is paged.  Apparently, I was already 3-4 cm and 70% effaced.  The day before at my appointment, I was barely 1.5 cm and my cervix was very posterior, so you can see why I felt it'd still be some time before Juliette made her grand entrance.

The doctor wanted me to be examined again in an hour, just to see how things were progressing.  We walked the floor and that did some good.  I was admitted after being told I'd hit 4.5 cm and that my cervix was finally cooperating! Yay, body!

I was reaching the next stage when I decided to jump in the shower.  The hot water was amazing and helped so much.  I stayed in there until my skin was nearly blistered from the hot water lol.  Jose was concerned about the water temp, since my skin was so red from the intense heat...  Let me tell you, I totally wanted a water birth at that point.  But hospital regulations, GBS, and water births don't exactly mix.  Maybe next time...  This labor was moving so quickly that before I was under the influence of any medication, and during this active second stage of labor, I was already talking about having another one!

I dismissed that thought at around 5 cm.  The pain was nauseating and radiating down my back and legs.  I decided it was epidural time.  I was shaking and things were moving fast; this was it!  I thought I still had at least another 4 hours of labor ahead of me, though.  I was also dreading another tear and an overwhelming transition--all from a previous bad experience with what seemed to be a never-ending labor, hence the decision to get the epi.

You'll be surprised to hear that in under 2 hours, I'd gone from 5-10 cm!  The nurses weren't even going to check me, but I pressed the little red call button when I suddenly felt like something was coming out of me on its own.  That something was actually SOMEONE I'd been eager to meet for 38 weeks and 4 days :)...

Juliette Vera arrived about 20 minutes later, at 12:59 AM on August 16th.  She entered the world warm and wonderful, weighing 7 lbs 1 oz and measuring 19 1/2 inches long.

I actually got to hold my new baby girl and inhale her delicious newborn scent!  Yummy, better than cupcakes!  There weren't any nurses or doctors there to rush her off to the NICU.  I got to experience that wonderfully euphoric feeling that comes with holding a tiny new life.  

Juliette ate for an hour and then fell asleep for 8 hours... and she still likes to sleep.  I'm in shock, really. Not sure how long it will last, though ;).  Believe me, I'm trying to stock up on the Zzzs as much as I can :).

(Side note: Jose changed his mind about her middle name at about 37 weeks, thankfully it didn't take too long to come up with another name we could agree on. ;)


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