September 21st, 2008
Here is a "brief" summary of the events yesterday. When I finished my last blog we were on our way to the hospital and I was confident that I was in labor.
* Moustapha and I arrived at the hospital around 11:30 am with Bakri and Maddux. I was placed on a monitor- to monitor the baby's heartrate as well as time and measure the strength of contractions. After I was on the monitor for about an hour, the nurse checked me and my cervix was 2 cm dilated and 30% effaced. This was about the same as it was the week before in Dr. Manning's office. The contractions were approximately 5 minutes apart, regular and strong. The doctor on call - Dr. Rosen- wanted to continue to monitor me. So, we waited. My parents and sister had arrived by then, so they were able to take the boys out of the room and keep them occupied.
We continued to be monitored and I was hopeful that there would be change the next time I was examined.
* At 3:20pm Dr. Rosen checked me and there was little change in my cervix. I was disappointed. But, since my contractions were very strong and only 5 minutes apart, there was no way they were sending me home in that condition- thank God! So, I was being admitted and at that point I was told that I was in "early labor."
* Dr. Rosen suggested that I might like to walk around the floor some which sometimes helps labor to progress. I was eager to get things going.
* At 3:35 pm I walked out of the maternity wing to find Bakri and Maddux. I only took a couple of steps in the hall and my water broke. It wasn't like a big dramatic scene out of a movie. Just some uncontrollable leaking. :-) I am glad it broke at the hospital. It is probably one of the least embarrassing places to have that happen.
* Nurse Tricia was just finding me a new room. So, we met up with her in the hall and I immediately had to get back in bed. Unfortunately, they don't allow a patient to walk around once their water breaks, because there is risk for infection. So, I got settled in my new room and got mentally prepared for labor to intensify. And boy, did it! The water breaking really made the difference. Things were going to move very quickly after that.
My dear friend, Jamil loaned me her Wonder Woman power wristband. I put it on to remind me of my inner strength. And also, just to make me feel better. Whatever helps, right??
Jamil also gave me some visualization tips. The one that I liked the best and used throughout labor was imagining that I was riding a wave as each contraction came. Knowing that although the wave may be big, it is going to crest and eventually it will end. And I can ride it to the top and at the strongest point, it will go down. That really worked for me....most of the time.
Here I am "riding the wave." I am seriously picturing this and it really helped. Thanks, Jamil!
* So, after 1 hour at 4:30 pm; Dr. Rosen checked me to find my cervix was ~4cm dilated and 80% effaced
*At 5:00 pm the boys came in to visit with their new longhorn hats. My parents brought them gifts to pass the time and also give them something fun to do while I was in labor.
* At 5:15 pm my dad visited with me briefly. At this point I was really having hard, painful contractions.
* At 5:33 pm it had been 1 hour since I was last checked and labor was getting more intense. I was feeling like I needed something to take the edge off, but I didn't want an epidural. Dr. Rosen recommended Nubane, which would help me to relax in between contractions. Nurse Cynthia checked my cervix and I was now at 5 cm dilated and 80% effaced. I took the Nubane and it definitely helped me to relax and feel very sleepy in between contractions. It didn't ease the pain of labor, but just having those more relaxed moments of rest in between contractions, made a difference for me. My mother-in-law visited with me during this time. I remember wanting to answer questions and talk, but I just couldn't.
* At 6:07 Dr. Rosen popped in the room and said he would be back to check my cervix at 6:30. But, that didn't happen. Within a few contractions, I was no longer getting a break in between and I was literally moaning, trying to breathe through it, but having a really hard time, because they weren't letting go. Dr. Rosin came back in the room and said that I was ready. This was before checking me, but just because of the way I was acting.
* At 6:22 pm, my cervix was dilated to 8 cm. And I was miserable! :-) Within minutes I was completely dilated and ready to push and when I say ready to push I mean, there was nothing or no one that was going to stop me from pushing. It is an absolute crazy feeling. I think that we really caught the doctor and staff off guard. Things were just going so fast. I was calling for help, saying "help me, help me" because they were telling me to hold off on pushing because they were getting everything ready and I couldn't hold off from pushing. It is just impossible.
* So, at 6:34 Trinity Rebekah El-Hakam was born weighing 8 lbs. 10.2 oz.; 20 ¾” long
I am so happy that I was able to experience labor in this way. It was something that I'd never been able to do before and something that I really wanted to do. God gave me strength and thankfully my body and the baby cooperated and it worked out. My mom and Moustapha were there with me throughout labor and were so supportive. I know it's hard to know what to do when someone is going through labor. But, they were both so patient and kind to me. My mom was praying and Moustapha was the emotional support that I needed. Thank you, Momma. And thank you, Moustapha! You're a wonderful dad. We are so blessed to have our sweet baby girl.