Jernigan Lee came into the world about 1:38 a.m., April 12, 2015. She weighed 8 lbs. 9 oz. and she was 21 in. long. Here's how it went down.
Warning! This post contains every bit of gory information. If you get queasy, I recommend the short version (labor progressed fast and we had a baby at home! She's beautiful and healthy. The end.)
Now for the long version:
After weeks and weeks of Braxton Hicks contractions as well as real ones thrown in the mix, I made it to 41 weeks. Saturday evening started just like every other evening. A bunch of contractions coming and going. However, this particular evening also brought about a slight bit of nausea which can be a sign of early labor. I had planned to go to Abbie's (best friend and doula) house that evening for some overdue hang out time and homemade mocha frappes courtesy of her hubby, Mark. After putting the kids to bed with Kev, I told him I'd keep him posted, but the contractions were just as likely to go away as much as they were to keep going. On the way to Abbie's, I called my mom to let them know to keep their phones nearby just in case. I was sort of thinking this night might be different.
We had a nice chat and the frappes were super yummy. The contractions continued, but they were just regular, early labor contractions that I was talking and laughing through and could've easily stopped at any time. They didn't, but I went home around 10:30ish, took a shower, and went to bed. The contractions were still going, maybe a little more intense, but not that noticeable with the hot water relaxing me.
Laying in bed, I had a contraction that was a little more intense. 10 minutes later, another that was more intense than the last and I was really needing to breathe harder this time. About 8-9 minutes later brought another contraction that was even harder to breath through. I figured it was time to get up and sat on the exercise ball and started the contraction timer so I could see any pattern and decide when we'd need to go in.
I had another contraction or two about 6-8 minutes apart and then they jumped to 2 minutes apart all along lasting a good minute long. After a few of those I decided we'd need to start getting ready to leave. At 1 a.m., I called my dad to come keep the kids and then called Abbie to let her know we would heading in as soon as my dad got there.
While we waited for him to get there, Kev loaded the car and the contractions intensified greatly. I began to wonder how I was going to manage the pain while riding in the car. Every contraction brought tons of back labor and Kev had to apply counter pressure which brought a good bit of relief. At one point, I finally reached the point that I told Kev I was done and would need an epidural when we got to the hospital. This should have clued me in that I must've hit transition because that's generally the part of labor when you call for the epidural (a.k.a. The point when it's too late!)
As we made our way to the front door, I had another contraction and Kev was right there with the exercise ball. The pain was only getting worse. As Kevin took one more thing to the car (probably my purse), I had one more contraction that took me from the exercise ball, all the way to the floor. There was no breathing through this one. I could only let out the most exasperated moaning of pain as I felt my water bag bulge and bust. I called for Kevin to get me some towels and to call 911. I told him the baby was coming "now"! It was about 1:30 a.m.
I handed him my phone and he handed it back to me to unlock it. Then he could call! After he got off the phone with them (he had to keep repeating the address because they weren't seeing it on their map?), my dad walked in. I promptly told him to go to the other room. "Just go now!" He did not need to be in the room for this. Did I mention I was in the front hall, about 5 feet from the front door?
Kevin called Abbie as I was doing a couple initial pushes and let her know we were having the baby right then and she needed to come immediately. She thought he was kidding at first, but quckly realized he wasn't and ran out the door!
When Kevin got back to me, Jerni's head was coming on out and I finally felt a little relief and was able to breathe. Another push brought her on out and Kevin caught her. She let out a beautiful little cry to let us know she was okay. Of course Kev didn't have towels so he had to call for my dad to bring some. As I turned to look at her, her umbilical cord ruptured (blood went everywhere). I started to freak out because those are supposed to be clammed or tied off. Kevin, being the quick thinker, grabbed the end of it and held it tightly. It was at this point that I realized the front door is open. I could see the lights from the ambulance flashing outside so I just started calling for help. Dad ran out the door to get them to hurry up! The first EMT came in and saw Kev. His words were, "You keep holding that. I'm going to go get the L&D kit." I know what you're thinking (why didn't he bring it to begin with?). I assume they usually get to calls like this and just take a pregnant woman to the hospital.they probably don't find a baby!
Once they got the kit and clamped Jerni's cord, they were able to check on me. I think it was about this time that the firemen showed up. So now, in addition to the two male EMTs in my house, there are now 3 male firemen all in the front door area. That's 5 strange men seeing me in a way I had hoped only my female doctor and female nurses would. Yes, I was thinking about this after all that had happens. I try to maintain a good bit of modesty so I felt quite embarrassed. They even asked if I could get up to get on the stretcher myself! Hello! I just gave birth, haven't delivered the placenta yet, and I'm just hurting. So they get me loaded up in the ambulance and I finally pass the placenta. Thank goodness. I felt much better...until they weren't equipped to do anything with it and I had to ride to the hospital with it in my lap essentially. They did cover it up with a lot of sheets so that was a little better. Then they handed me my beautiful baby girl and we sped off to the hospital!
So things didn't go as planned, but everything turned out alright and we are so blessed to have another beautiful, healthy baby girl.
Everyone at the hospital enjoyed our story and the only thing that happened there worth mentioning is that people filling out paperwork can get confused when things aren't normal. First, the nurse was filling out the birth information, she asked what the time of birth was. I told her 1:38 a.m. I had discussed the timing with the EMT and that was the time we guesstimated. Second, the lady who was filling out the birth certificate information heard our story of how daddy caught the baby and promptly asked who delivered the baby. We sure know how to make things difficult!
So that's our Jerni's story! On top of being born at home, she is also our only baby who wasn't born on a Friday afternoon! I'm sure she'll keep us on our toes for the rest of our lives!