What is it about birth stories? Do ya’ll love to read them as much as I do? Maybe its that everyones is different or maybe its that you can just feel the emotion from the stories because its such a magical time. Regardless, one of the things I’ve always loved about this little blog is the journal of memories it holds for our family. You can read Hunter V’s birth story from back in 2011 here and here. I didn’t write one for James Penn but I remember his like yesterday as well so I’m adding it to the list, right along with the baby book, haha. Poor middle child. Onto Townes….
About three weeks before my due date all the early labor symptoms started. Spotting, braxton hicks, except these braxton hicks HURT they are called Prodromal Labor and apparently are common for third pregnancies. At my 38 week appointment the doctor checked me and I was 1.5 to 2 cm dilated and almost all the way effaced, I thought for sure this was going to be my baby that came a little early. Both of the other boys were four days late and if you’ve ever seen your due date come and go then you know the misery. Even just a few days early would have made my year! Hunter actually had to go out of town for a business trip when I was 38 weeks and of course the night before he left I had prodromal labor again that kept me awake all night. I thought for sure he was going to miss the birth of this child. But by morning everything subsided and the rest of Week 38 came and went pretty uneventfully. From this point on I decided to start working from home.
Week 39 my mom arrived. It was a good feeling to know that if at any point from now on I went into labor the boys were taken care of. 39 weeks and a few days I woke up to more bleeding and again contractions. I thought for sure this was the start so we warned Hunter as he headed off to work to keep his phone close. That day mom and I walked and walked…nothing. The next day we decided to take matters into our own hands and head to Hawthorne’s for lunch. Have ya’ll heard of the inducer pizza? Well I had tried it weeks prior with no luck but his time I was days away from being 40 weeks and holy cow!! Literally seconds after finishing my pizza the contractions started. I personally think it has something to do with the spiciness of the pizza. Anyways, we had plans to go to Traders Joes after lunch as I needed to pick up a few things. Ya’ll as I was walking around Trader Joes I had to stop with every contraction and grip the cart to grin and bear it. They were painful!!! We made it through TJ’s pretty quickly, hoped in the car and called Hunter on our way home to come home from work. Yup, that’s how sure we were that this was it!! These were by far the most painful contractions I’ve ever experienced early on. My plan was to go home, walk around the house and if they kept up for another hour we would head to the hospital but of course they stopped.
At this point I’m permanently defeated. Both of the other boys were four days late with labor starting by my water breaking at home. I never had any contractions with them until I was hooked up to pitocin at the hospital. I now knew this labor would be no different, I just don’t have productive contractions on my own. Luckily, I had a Dr’s appointment the next day and we were all so curious to see if my little Hawthorne’s incident at least made me more dilated. Nope. I was exactly the same as I was the prior week. So pretty much all that pizza did was put me in severe pain for a couple hours, haha. At this point it’s Thursday, I’m 39 weeks and 5 days with an induction scheduled for Monday at 40 weeks and 2 days. Presidents Day! It’s such a nice feeling knowing an end date is in sight. Now mom and I needed to take our mind off things, so Friday we hit the mall for some shopping.
Now only two more days until we meet our sweet babe. Saturday and Sunday came and went pretty uneventfully with the exception of excruciating nerve pain down my leg but finally it was Monday morning! We were instructed to be at the hospital at 7am. Mom was up with the older boys getting them off to school and we packed up the car ready to meet our sweet babe. Half way to the hospital our car started beeping and flashed in red “turn car off, low oil pressure” I started laughing, could this be real? Hunter said “yeah we need to turn around and go get your car” So that’s what we did. Doesn’t Hunter look so nice to be going to the hospital to have a baby, haha. We were teasing him about wearing khakis but he wanted to look nice to meet his son for the first time. awww.
Once we finally arrived to the hospital about 45 minutes late is was all status quo. Got set up in our room, IV put in, pitocin dripping, and started watching the movie LaLa Land while I let the pitocin work its magic.
Here’s where the fun begins. With all my pregnancies I have low platelets. Really the only risk of low platelets (for me at least) is that if it gets below 75,000 lots of time anesthesiologist don’t like to give you an epidural. With James they never got below 88,000 so I really wasn’t that worried. Well…. around noon just as they cranked the pitocin up to 16 (highest is 20), the nurse comes in and says your platelet levels are 84,000 and the anesthesiologist wants a redraw. WHAT. Okay now I’m secretly starting to fret a bit thinking “what if” they won’t give me an epidural but I keep it together and try not to jump to conclusions. One O’clock comes and goes, Two O’clock comes and goes and my labs from the redraw with the new platelet number are STILL not back. I’m in full blown hard labor at this point. Moaning, breathing through every contraction and Hunters getting worried. The nurses were great. They are just as frustrated as us calling down to the lab every 20 minutes or so. All we needed was that redraw number to be at or higher than 84,000 and pain relief was in my future. FINALLY, around 2:30pm it came back at exactly the same 84,000. The anesthesiologist agreed to give me an epidural. hallelujah!!!
Up until now the nurse still hadn’t broken my water because the Doctor wanted to wait until after I got my epidural knowing that it would make my contractions that much stronger. So now with epidural in, the nurse checked me and broke my water. I was 7cm, I couldn’t believe it. So pretty much I labored without an epidural until 7cm. Labor badge earned! The rest went very fast. I dialed from 7cm to 10cm within another 30 minutes and started pushing 30minutes after that. Literally pushed six times and he was here at 4:26pm! I’ll never forget my first words as I saw him come out. “Oh my gosh he’s so cute!” And he was!!!
I love this little nugget more than anything, along with my other boys, and I’m extremely fortunate to have had three healthy pregnancies, three easy labors, and three healthy baby boys.
This last picture is Hunter, James Penn, and Townes in that order all ready to leave the hospital!! Oh my heart!