Luke was due on December 18, 2013, our third anniversary and the middle of Jeremy’s finals week. Since Madeline had come five days early it never even crossed my mind that we might have one more Christmas as a family of three. I had spent the past several months daydreaming of snuggling with a brand new baby boy Christmas morning. Luke had a stocking (and lots to fill it with), Christmas jammies to match his daddy’s, and presents under the tree from his grandparents.
I had dilated to a one a couple weeks before my due date, similar to where I was with Madeline, but then the weeks kept coming and the contractions weren’t coming and it became clear he wouldn’t be early.
His due date came and went, but we were still pretty sure he’d be here any day. On Monday the 23rd I had a midwife appointment and since I’d passed 40 weeks they sent me to the hospital downtown to have a routine ultrasound. They hooked me up to a monitor for about half an hour and I cannot tell you how disappointing it is to have NO contractions that entire time. Boo. So they scheduled me for another appointment on Thursday to do the same thing.
Then it was Christmas eve and I found myself just hoping and praying he wouldn’t come Christmas day. I know people share their birthday with Christmas and it works out, but I really didn’t want for him to go through that. We had a wonderful Christmas and a delicious dinner at a friends house, but the whole time I kept thinking, “I can’t believe I’m still pregnant!” It wasn’t so much that I was (that) tired of being pregnant, if I had been under the impression I wasn’t due for another two weeks I would have been fine, I was just SO CONVINCED he’d be early so I was kind of in shock that we were already to 41 weeks. But he didn’t come on Christmas, and I can’t tell you what a huge sigh of relief I let out at about 11:00 that night.
It came to our attention as the due date passed that there was in fact a chance he could come after the new year, which for insurance and tax purposes and wasn’t gonna fly. At my last midwife appointment I had mentioned that I really wanted to be induced before the new year was upon us. They scheduled me to be induced 10:00 Saturday night.
The day after Christmas I went in for more monitoring. Everything was still fine and I had a couple slight contractions, but really nothing… I had kind of started accepting that I might in fact be induced. It was hard to accept that because I had big plans this time around for a natural birth and I didn’t think I’d be able to handle all natural with pitocin strength contractions and not having the freedom to move like I wanted.
Friday night as Jeremy and I were cuddled up on the couch watching the West Wing (yes… yes I know…) I had a few of the strongest contractions I’d had so far. After one rather strong one Luke went crazy inside of me. He was kicking and punching and moving around like never before. We went to bed thinking about how nice it would be for him to come on his own, but our hopes weren’t too high.
I had several contractions during the night but not close enough together to warrant much attention. Saturday morning we had a big list of things to do before going to the hospital that night. We cleaned and packed and showered and all the while my contractions started coming closer and closer together. Timing contractions is exhausting…
I texted our wonderful friends the Larsens (who were planning to come stay with Madeline that night so we could check into the hospital to be induced) just letting them know there might be a chance he was coming on his own and we’d need them sooner, but I was so stressed about being wrong… Maybe it’s dumb of me, but that’s the worse part for me. The ‘when to go to the hospital’ dilemma. Still the contractions were getting stronger and closer together. I could walk and talk through most of them so we decided to take Madeline for a walk to the park. She’d been asking all morning and it was a beautiful day! Like Madeline was running around without a jacket.
Finally I decided we should at least head home and call the midwife. I gave her a call and we pretty much discussed everything I already knew. That I didn’t want to come in too early but Madeline came pretty fast and we also didn’t want Luke to be born in the car… It was about noon and she suggested we meet her at the hospital at 2:30 but to call her immediately if things picked up much more. She also agreed to start inducing me at 2:30 if it didn’t seem as though I was in active labor. With that promise I felt good calling the Larsens to come over because that way if I wasn’t in labor we wouldn’t have to make the walk of shame home from the hospital just for a couple hours. So we gave them a call and they came over about 2:00. We showed them around, hugged and kissed sweet Madeline and headed off to the hospital. One way or another we were finally going to meet this baby boy!!!