I was hugely pregnant. I was miserable and certain I would be very very late. I could never have been more wrong. Steven and I planned to go down to Kidcity with Hannah, Heather, and Gary. It would be fun, Hannah would love it. I was excited for her, and for us, since we hadn't been in quite a while.
Saturday night, March 1st, we decided to go out to dinner. Olive Garden. I love Olive Garden and this was no exception. As we sat down, I had a contraction. Nothing out of the ordinary. I'd been having them for half the pregnancy. Wasn't uncomfortable at all, but it was sort of fun freaking out the waitress, as I was clearly VERY pregnant. They continued on and off through dinner. After we got home they stopped for a bit. Steven and the kids went out for a while, and it was just Hannah and I. She needed to have her nebulizer medicine, and I let her watch some Noggin while she took it. She hated that thing with a passion I never understood. So I left the tv on for her and popped onto my Moms' board, where I had a message from one of my loveliest friends, Joanna. I told her that I kept having contractions, but that they were ridiculous. There was no way I was in labor. Classic false labor is contractions when you are standing and active, but stop when you're sitting and resting. I was having contractions when I was sitting down, but they were going away whenever I got up. She said she hoped I was wrong. I was.
I stayed up a bit later than normal that night, timing my contractions. Twelve minutes, eight minutes, fifteen minutes, eleven minutes, nine minutes, thirteen minutes. I got sick of it after a couple hours and went to bed around 10:30. I woke up at 1:15, classic pregnant woman peeing a thousand times a night. When I went back to bed I couldn't get comfortable. I was having contractions, but because of the way the bed was set up, I couldn't see the clock, so I had no idea they were less than 10 minutes apart. Steven woke up at about 2:30 because I was tossing and turning so much. I told him maybe we should call the doctor and see what they said. At that point they were about seven minutes apart, but they tell you not to call until five. He called anyways, and since they were impossible to walk/talk through, they said come in. With a rushed call to my mom and grabbing the last of the stuff we needed, we rushed over to Holyoke Medical center, much like the first time with Hannah.
As soon as I got in and settled they started an IV, the single most painful IV I've ever had inserted in my life. They checked me and determined I was at 5cm. They went through all the ridiculous questions they ask you when you get admitted to deliver. And at some point my mom and David showed up. About 4:15 they had run the blood work and were getting me my epidural. I felt gypped with Hannah that it moved so fast, and this time I WANTED drugs. So the anesthetist came and inserted the catheter. Then they tell you to lie on your back while the drugs distribute through your system. Bad Move. Lying on your back while 40 weeks pregnant for any amount of time is a horrible idea, and it was equally bad this time. I got the dark fuzzy feeling, and the whooshing noise that means you're going to pass out. I told the nurse monitoring me and sure enough my blood pressure was something like 30/80. Not good. I was rolled to one side and given pure oxygen. Eventually everything stabilized and I was good. Mostly. Then I realized that rolling to one side had messed with the balance of medicine controlling my pain from contractions. It had only taken on one side, the one opposite of the side I rolled to. So now I could feel everything on the right side of my body, and absolutely nothing on my left. Contractions came and went, closer and closer. While I could still feel some, my mother said I was a different person entirely from when I delivered Hannah. Coherent, talking, laughing. Not at all the miserable out of it mess that I was the first time. At some point they came and broke my water, and then checked me and determined that I was fully ready to push.
I started pushing at 5:20am on Sunday March 2nd. And 25 minutes and 8 pushes later, Norah Anne was born. At 6lbs 7oz and 20 inches long, she was perfect and gorgeous. Another miracle that I could have never wished for more.