On Wednesday September 12, Lauren went in for an appointment to have her membranes stripped. She was dilated to a 5 (up from 4 on Monday), and the doctor told her she'd be "dumbfounded" if we weren't in the hospital that night.
Almost immediately, Lauren started feeling the effects. She even had to sit in the parking lot of the hospital for a bit before she was ready to drive home. I was at school, and she called to tell me everything that had happened. So much for being able to pay attention in class!
I arrived home around 4:15 and she was having a few contractions, so we decided to start using the contraction tracker I had created named Labor Track. We started at around 4:30 and began tracking from there for almost 3 hours, even though Lauren's doctor said to come in when she started having contractions. We were just afraid of being turned away.
|An image of Labor Track|
We finally headed to the hospital around 7:15. We walked up to the receptionist, and visited for a minute, they ushered us back to the room, had Lauren change, and started hooking her up. All this time I never saw her have a contraction, which worried me. The nurse came in around 7:30 to hook up the monitors and to check Lauren's dilation. She was dilated to 6 and she went to get an IV and recommended Lauren see the anesthesiologist immediately. Lauren decided to hold off on the epidural since she wasn't in very much pain, and he was already at the hospital for the night.
|Lauren eating a popsicle|
|Contractions (Blue) and Claire's Heartbeat (Red)|
Unexpectedly, family started showing up to the hospital. We had told them Lauren was in labor, but didn't expect them to drive all the way up right then! They stayed the night, too! What troopers!
About the time that Lauren's dad showed up, her doctor showed up as well to break her water. This was around 9:30 or so, and by 10:00, Lauren was really feeling the effects of labor, and called for the anesthesiologist. Lauren felt relief almost instantly, and was able to rest for about 15 minutes at a time due to the blood pressure monitor. Only here was there any sort of an issue with Claire. Her heartbeat didn't respond well to contractions for a bit, but she shaped up, and began behaving fairly quickly.
Lauren's labor kept progressing well, and by about 1 or 2 am, she was dilated to a 9, 100% effaced, and really, was dilated more than that. They were just waiting on one part of her cervix to finish dilating. By 3 am, she was totally dilated. At this point, she could have started pushing, but the hospital likes to wait for an hour for first time moms for ease of pushing.
At 4:08 am, Lauren started pushing. Everything was going well, except that she would have 4 or 5 contractions, and then no contractions for a few minutes. It slowed the process down, for sure. Claire started to barely crown at about 6 am, so the nurse called in the doctor. The doctor came in, and things went quickly from there. Claire was born at 6:17 am. The doctor's first comment was how big she was, and at 8 lb 13 oz and 20 in, she was a big baby for sure.
We spent about 2 days in the hospital, and by the time we left, Lauren was already looking great! (She looks even more amazing now!)
Since then, life is great. Very tiring, but we love it! Claire had some bilirubin issues, and had to spend a couple days on a UV bed whenever possible. It was difficult because she did not sleep well, and it stressed Lauren out a bit. But when we went to the doctor, her weight was heading back up (and we think it's still going!) We're loving being parents, and couldn't ask for a more lovable girl to have as our daughter!