estee's birth story: part 2.

You can read part 1 here.

We jumped in the car and started toward the hospital (10-12 minutes away). I called my mom to let her know that it was baby time and at that point it was a struggle to talk through the contractions. I kept urging Ben to drive over the speed limit and got frustrated on the freeway when he was going 5 mph over and there wasn't a car in sight. ;) He upped the speed to 10 mph over the limit and I focused on breathing.

We pulled up to the main entrance and rushed in to the Women's Evaluation Unit check-in right inside the doors. Fortunately, no one else was in labor at 4am and the nurses could see that my water had broken, I was in pain, and I wasn't going to be heading home anytime soon. While they wheeled me into a room to get my vitals checked, Ben ran to park the car. By the time he got back 5 minutes later we were taken up to a labor and delivery room and I was given a gown to change into. My nurse entered things into the computer while asking Ben questions since I couldn't talk (contractions were coming every 1-2 minutes) and I lied down on the bed as she started my IV. She checked me and let us know that I was at a 4. At this point the pain was pretty intense and I either dealt with each contraction quietly or said "ow" over and over. I'll admit, I cried a tear or two right before the nurse called for the anesthesiologist!
By 5:15am the anesthesiologist had arrived and worked her magic, and I was feeling pretty darn great. (I thought epidurals would make everything go completely numb. Instead, I could feel and move my legs/feet/toes but didn't feel a single contraction. It was amazing!) The nurse checked me again but since I was only at a 5 she told us to get some sleep and she would be back right before her shift ended at 7am. Because of that blessed epidural, Ben and I were able to sleep for the next hour.

At 6:45am the nurse came back in to check me. To everyone's surprise, I had dilated to a 10 but baby was still sitting ridiculously high! In order to get her to work her way down, the nurse gave me a peanut ball to put between my knees and told me to again get some sleep. The new nurse on shift, Jenny, was absolutely amazing and came in to check on baby's progress a few times over the next two hours. Finally around 9:30am Jenny had me start pushing with Ben and a nursing student each holding one of my legs. ;) After an hour and a half of pushing and chatting in between each push, my doctor came in and decided to hang out/help me push since there wasn't a whole lot else going on that morning. After another hour and a half of pushing and watching baby's heart rate slowly go down, the doctor gave me the option of either having a C-section or trying to suction baby out 3 times with a C-section after that if she didn't decide to come.

Without any hesitation, Ben and I both agreed on trying to suction baby out; a C-section definitely wasn't our first choice. Within a minute the room had filled with nurses and residents and it finally sunk in that baby was almost here! The doctor did a quick episiotomy, counted out pushes for me, and baby came on the third suction.

The next few minutes I'll never forget. It was such a sweet and special moment, and I felt like I was officially meeting someone I already knew.

After the NICU team had checked baby out (there were some breathing concerns) and the nurses had done all of their tests and measurements, we were left alone to settle into our new normal as a family of three.

Second best day of my life.  :)

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