I remember Derrick kissing me goodbye as he left for work early Friday. I woke up a little past 8a without any belly soreness or contractions. I thought – nope, not having the baby today. I was supposed to go in and see a patient at the hospital. I wanted to be a team player and help out. Officially, my clinic was already closed for my maternity leave. Since it was a stormy late morning, I worked at home. My boss told me not to come in anyway (“you do not need to be delivering at the Peds ICU of xxoo hospital” his exact words)
(anyway, if I did break my bag of waters while working, I’ve got a plan.. I will walk (or ask for help) to go to the 3rd floor and cross the hallway and check myself in the L&D ward. Then Derrick will just meet me there) Funny but not funny to those passerby helping a laboring woman.
So back to the story:
I started the Filipino soup (sinigang). I added my favorite veggies. I graded medical students notes for their clinical skills exam. I was so proud of myself finishing all the grading assigned to me while eating lunch! (high five!) I have had contractions, maybe regular, but did not think much of them.
At 2pm, after lunch, I was just on the couch resting when I truly paid attention to my contractions. They were 5-6 minutes apart and 30 seconds long. I was texting my sister at that point… And I totally freaked out when I realized this must be IT! It also did not help that I had to go to the bathroom because of the anxiety which made me feel hot and cold at the same time. I called Derrick’s cell and his workphone without any luck. And I freaked out even more. I was reminded of the memories and pain of previous deliveries. I remembered them all. I continued to freak out until I remember to pray. I called St. Lucy. I called St. Therese and two male saints (names we have picked out if baby D4 is a boy). But I was still panicking.
I remembered I did not have my hospital bag fully packed. So I went upstairs and finished that. That’s when Derrick messaged me and said he’s at a meeting that will be finishing in 5 minutes. I told him to finish that then come home.
I started to calm down at that point. I was not going into labor or delivery on my own. There was no way I could do natural birth on my own. Hence the panic attack and fear. All that talk of walking myself to L&D and waiting for Derrick there, obviously, I cannot handle that!
Amazing enough, once I have calmed my nerves, the contractions were there and still4-5 minutes apart but not as painful… Derrick came home and I was on the phone with the OB clinic staff. It was 3:30p and I knew as a courtesy that I should at least notify them that I am in early labor. The NP said come in and we will check you. What??? I was hoping she will just say, ok just call us when they are 2-3 minutes apart and you’re ready to go to the hospital. I did not expect to be summoned.
But I was a good patient.
So Derrick and I loaded our bags and we headed to the OB clinic. It was like taking a test. I am hoping for a good grade when OB checks my cervix. I was hoping I would be 5 cm dilated. Derrick said 4 cm… Who’s right?
Then another thought crossed my mind, how many laboring women have delivered at the OB clinic? Hmmmm…..
I saw my OB who was finishing a full Friday clinic after an overnight call. She looked tired but still cheery. She introduced me to the doctor oncall for Saturday. I have met her before. My OB said I am still happy and talkative myself so that’s a good sign (meaning I would not deliver there). The doctor on call Friday was actually at the hospital already.
My OB checked me… I was….. only 3 cm!
I am a wimp. That’s all I could think of. All that pain, all that anxiety. I cannot handle them anymore as well as I did the first time around. They were uncomfortable contractions but I was hoping I was progressing more than 3 cm!
So of course, I was sent home which I have already anticipated. My thinking was I will head to the hospital around 9pm when the contractions were getting closer and closer and stronger and stronger. I asked Derrick when he expected the baby to arrive. He said after midnight. Oh my…. I did not think I could make it past midnight enduring all the labor pains.
I did not have much appetite though it was dinnertime. I was in the mood for ice cream though. Hubs and I stopped by our favorite ice cream place and just sat there. I was contracting regularly but the ice cream made me forget the anxiety. It was relaxing.
We borrowed a movie from the redbox. I was half into it, half not into it. I was on my phone doing what I like best – shop! Yep, I was contracting every 3-4 minutes for 30-45 seconds and I was shopping (insert roll eyes, here).
Thank you for reading! I can be found on: