It’s been a while since my last post (okay, a long while). I didn’t expect to wait so long to write about the arrival of our daughter, Heidi Marie, but she didn’t arrive until 16 days after her due date! It was like Silas’ birth all over again. And now that I have two kids, I can hardly find the time to feed myself or shower which has put blog priority way down on the list.
James’ mom arrived 3 days before the due date on July 12th. I was SO ready for her to get here. I was worried I was going to go into labor and no one would be here to watch Silas (ha!) and I was also getting huge and tired and was looking forward to someone who could help entertain and play with Silas. Well, the days waiting for labor turned into weeks. The midwives here would have probably let me be pregnant forever since the non-stress tests and ultrasounds showed everyone was very healthy. I do prefer the non-intervention mindset but 16 days – geez! By 42 weeks, I would have probably checked myself into the hospital to be induced but labor inductions work differently here. They won’t use pitocin to start labor – they will only use it if labor has already started. So if you check into the hospital, they will try various other homeopathic options as well as some other drugs not used in the US. However, this can take days. James’ co-worker’s wife went past her due date so they checked into the hospital. 6 days later she went into labor! I had a toddler at home and I really don’t like staying in hospitals so we opted to wait it out.
By day 14, I was getting a little frustrated and emotional. I think the midwives felt sorry for me so they finally decided to do a membrane sweep (something they won’t normally do unlike in the US). At this point I had tried everything including 3 rounds of castor oil. Finally, the membrane sweep seemed to do the trick. I had some contractions that started almost immediately. They stopped later that day but I went back and they did another membrane sweep the next day at noon. This time contractions started again and they seemed to stay. By 7pm I was heading to the birth center with intense contractions 5 minutes apart. I thought surely I was going to have the baby a few hours later since second labors are usually shorter, right??? Wrong. At around 11pm my contractions were getting farther apart. Not disappearing but just spacing out. After an hour or so of fewer contractions, the midwives decided to transfer me to the hospital to get pitocin. We checked into the hospital around midnight. The hospital midwives didn’t really want to use pitocin. They wanted to try some other more natural methods. Normally I’m all for that but come on! I’m 16 days overdue at this point, I’ve tried every homeopathic option, and I’m 12 hours into labor and counting. I was done. They made me wait until 11:30 am before they finally hooked up the pitocin. It took a little while to kick in but 2 hours later Heidi practically fell out. The timing was almost identical to Silas’ birth. With him, they broke my water and contractions started at noon and I had him the next day at 12:30 pm. With Heidi, my contractions started at 1pm and I had her at 1:30 pm the next day. I’m pretty certain I’m done having kids so I’m just happy I don’t have to go through being overdue and 24 hour labors ever again (knock on wood!).
We are so happy to have her on the outside. This time around has been way less stressful. I know how temporary the difficult first days and weeks are and how fast they will pass. I know that I will sleep again although it may be a year. I remember the light at the end of the tunnel. Although this time the light also includes a toddler; taking care of two kids under 2 does terrify me a little but I know I’ll figure it out.