In an attempt to answer many questions from our family and friends thousands of miles away, "Here's what happened..." (as Monk would say)
Monday, May 17, 2010--
I went to my doctor for a regular appointment. Since I was more pregnant than I had ever been before, I was a little concerned about some ways that my body felt. I didn't know what would be normal late pregnancy experiences and what would be the signs of "it's time to call the doctor". I was basically put on bed rest, which was pretty good timing as Thomas' schedule was clear, and we were expecting a friend (Vanessa aka Anna, as named by Isaiah) to visit at the end of the week--the kind of friend that is really my sister (she has red hair and everything, too, and likes freestyle wrestling, so we just decided we're sisters; perhaps that raises more questions, but those are for another time). I was given instructions to call the birthing hospital if I had any problems or thought I was going into labor.
So Vanessa arrived and we enjoyed a relaxing weekend, trying to belatedly celebrate her birthday with special treats.
Sunday evening, May 23, 2010--
Watching a movie with Thomas and Vanessa, I realized that I was having a strange tightening sensation in my stomach that would come and go. There wasn't any pain, though, so I thought about ignoring it, but it just kept happening. I mentioned it to Thomas, and he started timing them. Sure enough, every 8 1/2 minutes I'd have one for about 30-45 seconds. So after almost an hour of this going on while Thomas searched the internet for other symptoms of going into labor (which all applied to me, except water breaking), he called the hospital to ask what we should do. They said, "Come." So we came.
By 12:45 am or so, I was hooked up to a monitor to record the contractions and the baby's heartbeat. I can't tell you how relieved I felt that I was indeed having something real and not imagining these feelings in my stomach. They became more frequent, every 5 1/2 minutes or so, and lasted almost a minute. They also started to be uncomfortable. But, my cervix was still closed, so the doctor said that this wasn't the time for labor. He did admit me though, to give me medicine through a drip over night to stop the contractions. And indeed they stopped. I confess I felt a little disappointed that we had to stop what my body seemed to be doing naturally, but apparently my body wasn't really completely ready.
So we spent the night. Now, because I'm enjoying sharing all the details, but I don't want this to become a novel, I'm going to say "To be continued..."
If you have any specific questions, I know some friends love birth stories, feel free to leave them in the comments, and I'll either include answers in the next installment or email you personally. :)