I'm feeling surprisingly close to human. I've taken a shower and been much more easily mobile this morning. Ender (yes, I think I'm going to keep that name for him on the blog at least for now) was up more than he wasn't overnight, and I even had the nurse take him for a little bit of time so that I could guarantee at least a bit of sleep for myself. Right now I just need some here and there, and I need to be flexible with sleeping when he does, mostly. In the hospital, I have that advantage (and knowing that my other children are in wonderfully capable hands with Daddy and grandparents).
As I had been writing, I was in early recognizable labor since about 12pm on July 13th. I was thinking that perhaps things would get moving enough so that I'd have the baby late that night, but everything held steady. I took a nap first thing when I realized that I was having relatively regular, if mild, labor contractions.
We had a lovely birthday dinner and celebration for me. With cupcakes. The Boy is very into celebrations and parties and really seems to understand them. Meatball doesn't really get it but he got cupcakes.
The same sort of early labor contractions persisted, but I was able to sleep through them that night. We had a nice relatively easy, normal day on Thursday, and then it was technically Friday when we went to triage to see if I was really in labor. The whole thing felt a lot like Meatball's birth in terms of how it progressed.
The full moon might have had something to do with it, or not, but I felt a strong urge to sleep in the recliner at about 10 pm, and was feeling contractions a little bit more strongly, so I slept until I was awakened by the strange events of the guy with the car. I stayed downstairs and walked, and bounced on the ball, and, of course, played around on the computer. I went upstairs right before the time that Meatball woke up, and was lying in bed, which was okay, but not terrific. Once Musical Daddy returned from caring for Meatball, then The Boy woke up and wanted the potty, so I got out of bed and tended to him (frustrating, by the way--he doesn't stay dry at night but also still gets up and goes, or wants to go, so he needs help), and sent him back to bed. At this point we were both up and I was kind of feeling the need to hold Musical Daddy's hand, or shoulder, just for the reassuring touch. This was, maybe, 2:30 AM. We watched The Guild on Netflix (it's really funny, it's about a group of gamers who live near each other in real life and their interactions with each other in and out of the game...people who would likely not be otherwise affiliated).
After we watched the show, I said that I was going downstairs for a bit to see where I stood labor-wise (and to time contractions just for reporting purposes because I was pretty sure this was it), and that I'd be calling the doctor around 4 AM. And that Musical Daddy should get some sleep, since we hadn't been getting much. Frustratingly, the first time I called, I got no response, so I called again. I probably should have just called the doctor that I know but I didn't want to wake his family and the only number I have for him is his home number, or his wife's cell phone. At 4:45 I spoke with the doctor on call (not one that I knew or had ever seen). He was surprised that they had sent me home the first time, when he asked how much I had progressed when they saw me, and I said I was glad that they did, and I live close. He gave me the go-ahead to come in, so we did. I told my parents that we were leaving and what the status of the children was. We were in the car at 5 AM.
I wasn't sure how the car ride was going to go, since I had been walking through my contractions previously and of course I couldn't do that, but it wasn't a major issue. I got in the car after a contraction, had just the one in the car, and one when I got out.
By the time we got into the hospital, talked to the people at the desk, and got set up in the triage room, it was 5:25 when Musical Daddy "checked us in" on Facebook. I hadn't bothered to write anything online about us leaving for the hospital, figuring that I'd have a little bit of time to notify people. I had to pee in a cup (during which I heard the girl in the room next to mine screaming). I had maybe two more contractions while standing and walking around, because I did NOT want to get on that stretcher until someone was actually there. Then my water broke as I stood there, and the nurse said "Well, now you get to stay for sure!" and I got onto the bed. I had been nervous about how that would go, because I hadn't had that happen on its own with my other two labors.
The triage doctor came in at that point and checked me to find that I was completely dilated. I felt that I was pretty darned close to that, but I hadn't felt that until my water broke, and I was still a bit nervous about "transition" which I barely even experienced this time. As they were wheeling me from the triage room to L&D, I was feeling like I was about to have this baby and making some pushing motions, because that's what I felt like doing. I got into the room and did NOT want to be monitored, nor did I want to be on my back, nor was I particularly keen on moving, but it didn't particularly matter in either case. One push to finish out the contraction before I did move onto the real bed, then one push for his head, and one for the rest of him. He was born at 5:47.
Andrew Evan is his name. He was born at 8lbs 12oz and is TALL at 22.5 inches. He looks like his brothers, but he also looks like himself.
I'm already healing and recovering quite well. I think it's a nice design feature, at least in my case, that with subsequent children, the mother recovers more quickly. So that she has the energy to handle the other ones as well.