So, as you’ll recall, I had just gone to bed, praying for peace and for wisdom, when I rolled over, felt a pop and felt something watery. Believe it or not, my first reaction wasn’t that my water had broken. The reason for this was because in the week’s leading up to delivery, I had been using Evening Primrose Oil, which is said to be a cervix softener (sorry if this is TMI for any of you, but it’s the story, so deal). I normally put it in immediately before bed, but as I wrote in part two, I had gone to bed and then gotten back up that night. I thought that maybe the oil just hadn’t had a chance to absorb and was leaking. I rolled over and attempted to “adjust” myself and quickly realized it wasn’t just a little bit.
I jumped out of bed and ran to the washroom – probably faster than I had moved in a long, long time – and called to Evan. He came running and I said “My water broke. At least I think it did”. He checked out the situation and I asked what he thought. He said he would have expected it to be more if it was my water, but what else could it be? We decided that the baby was probably low, making it so that not a ton came out, but that it was definitely my water. I was soaked through my underwear and all down my legs. We grabbed the Midwife binder and reviewed protocol for if my water broke during the night. Since I had not started contractions and everything about my water breaking was on the normal side, my instructions told me to get things prepared and then go back to bed and try to get some rest to gear up for labour and page to let them know at 6 am, if labour had not begun.
So, that we did. We made the bed and arranged the final birth supplies and also called our parents. Mine were already in town but Evan’s parents had a three hour drive. We weren’t sure if/when my contractions would start on their own, but we did know that regardless of whether or not I started on my own, we would be having a baby within 24-48 hours, and so they decided to go ahead and head down to be sure they didn’t miss it. They planned to head to Marcia and Linda’s when they arrived in town and just wait for the call that things were moving along.
By the time we got everything arranged and put together, it was about midnight. I took a few pictures, Evan scolded me and told me we needed to rest and save our energy, and we laid down. He was out like a light within seconds. I, of course, was not. I was trying to keep myself calm and remind myself it could be a number of hours before anything started but I was so excited. I was going to have my baby! I immediately thought how God had answered my prayers of anxiety and most definitely given me a way to know, for sure, that it was the real deal this time. I knew that no matter how it progressed – the baby was coming.
I laid in bed, willing my mind and body to calm down so I could rest when the first contraction hit me at exactly 12:30. And hit me, it did. Like, whoa. It was hard, long and intense and left me having to catch my breath. I laid still for a few more minutes waiting and bam! the next one followed a few minutes later. Because my early labour with Evalyn progressed and built up very gradually, I was not sure how to deal with the intensity of these contractions right from the start. I got through two or three more on my own and then I felt like there was no choice but to wake Evan up. Having to do this worried me. A lot. If I couldn’t get through more than 4-5 of these contractions on my own without seeking his support, how would I make it to the end?
It was about 1 am when I woke him up, we got up and tried to move around a bit as he helped me cope through the contractions. In the next few minutes, I soaked through another two or three pairs of pants and all the while the contractions were getting much stronger, closer together and much more intense. However, as time progressed they started getting much shorter. Between 1:30-2 am was the only time during my labour that I timed the contractions. They were coming 2 minutes apart, lasting 30-45 seconds as opposed to the initial contractions which were lasting 45 seconds to a minute and a half.
I knew I wasn’t ready to page the midwives because we were still dealing well on our own, but I also knew things weren’t slowing down. I started praying that it would go quickly – because the intensity was building in a way I never experienced with Evalyn – and I wasn’t sure how long I could keep my endurance up for a labour like this. I tried to keep my mind focused on baby steps - taking one contraction at a time, waiting to call our moms, waiting until it was time to page and so on.
Around 1:30 I sent Evan outside to get all the doors unlocked and lights on for the midwives and our mom’s so that he wouldn’t have to leave my side later on, because I knew from my last experience that when labour gets tough – the number one thing I need to cope is having him beside me. He called my mom and told her to head over. He called his parents and told his Dad to drop his mom off at our place instead of heading to Marcia and Linda’s first.
We started struggling with knowing when would be the right time to page. Of course, I didn’t want to page too early and wake the midwives up unnecessarily but I also didn’t want to wait too long since they had warned me that based on my experience delivering Evalyn, things might go very quick.
My mom arrived just before 2, as Evan and I were getting in the shower to clean up my legs and hopefully get some relief from the pain of the contractions. The water didn’t give me the relief I had hoped it would so we didn’t stay in there for more than a few contractions. When we got out, my mom had arrived and we started talking seriously about when it would be time to page.
To be continued…
*Sidenote: I am sorry about the multiple part posting. I’m not trying to be dramatic and cliff hanger’ish, but I want to capture every single detail and I also have limited time to sit down and write between naps/feeds/diaper changes and so on. Stay with me!*