Dottie was due on September 2nd, but had other plans and decided to come a bit early. My water broke on Wednesday, August 20th around 4:15pm, I was 38 weeks and 1 day. I had just finished working for the day and was getting ready to leave and pick up Ella from camp when it happened (thank goodness I had not left the house yet!) I called my doctor's office and she said to go right to the hospital. It was not nearly as dramatic as I'd imagine it would be when your water breaks, so I was thinking I may be mistaken and would be sent home from the hospital.
Funny enough, Steve had called twice during the day to check on me because he had a 'feeling.' Both times I said 'nope, nothing to report, all good.' This time when I called him, he knew it right when he answered the phone. He left his meeting to pick up Ella from camp, and I called my friend Carmen who was going to watch Ella overnight - her first ever non-family sleepover!
Luckily I already had our bags about 90% packed and had a list for the final things needed, so I finished packing us up, and by that time Steve and Ella got home. Ella was really excited for both the baby to be born and her first sleepover, but seemed a little nervous too. We had a few minutes to talk and then Carmen arrived with the girls to pick up Ella. Steve made arrangements for his friend to stay at our house to watch Cory, and then we were on our way.
We got to the hospital around 6:15pm and after the nurse confirmed that my water had definitely broken, I was admitted so we knew this was 'really it' and we weren't leaving without the baby.
My last pregnant picture
I was hoping to avoid pitocin and being induced, and so my doctor said that I could wait until midnight and see if I went into active labor on my own (I was already dilated to about 4 cm and having many contractions, but they were not at all organized or getting worse in intensity). This gave me more than 5 hours to try to go into labor - but even better, 5+ hours to finish up all the work I hadn't finished and wanted to push forward before I started my leave. I set up my computer and hot-spot and went to work - I easily got about 8 hours worth of work in that time and sent my last email at 11:55 pm. Although there were still a few loose ends, I was so happy to get all that done and felt good about where I left things since I had been planning on working at least another week or so before she was born.
Meanwhile, Ella was having a good time at Sophie's house, and I got to talk to her and say goodnight before she went to bed.
My pitocin started at midnight and it took about 2 hours for my contractions to become painful, by 4am I was just 5 cm dilated, definitely seemed to be going slow and I thought I was in for a lot more time. I finally got the epidural around 4:30 or 5am (the wait for it seemed to take forever, and just like with Ella, I ended up needing to get the shot twice because the first one didn't work correctly...that was incredibly frustrating.) The hours from 3am - 5am or so were the only parts of labor that were really bad, although it seemed like a lot longer than 2 hours at the time. Steve was great and so was the nurse I had, and Mom was at the airport so we were texting then, and Erin started texting as soon as she woke up as well, really early in the morning. So even though it was the wee hours of the morning, I had some great support and company during the worst of it :).
All of a sudden I was dilated to 9.5 cm and the nurse called my doctor to tell her I'd be ready to push pretty soon. My doctor arrived around 5:45 am. I was so glad she was able to deliver the baby - we had talked at my last appointment on Monday about the fact that she was going on vacation for the long weekend for Labor Day, and so if I had the baby then she wouldn't be able to deliver her and I'd have one of her associates who I'd never met before, which I was seriously wanting to avoid.
A few pushes later, and Dottie was born!
Our beautiful Dorothy Grace- born at 6:15 am on August 21st
She weighed 7 lbs 0 oz and was 19 inches long
Steve and I had her with us for the first hour in the delivery room. We held her, I tried to nurse her a little bit, and she cried and cried almost the whole time. I remember thinking very clearly in that first hour - whoo, this one is feisty and has quite a set of lungs!
They took her to the nursery for her bath and to go under the warmer to get her temperature up and stable, so we didn't have her for the next 3 hours. They took us to the post-partum room and we slept for a little bit. Mom arrived during this time and Steve went to pick up Ella from Sophie's house so she could meet the baby when we got her back at 10am.
I heard her coming down the hall - screaming again, and I recognized the cry ;), and was very happy to have her back!
About 10 minutes later, Steve arrived with Ella and she got to meet her baby sister for the first time.
Mom arrived just a few minutes after that. Ella wasn't quite ready to share but did let Grammy have a turn meeting her :)
With my girls!
Mom took Ella home and Steve and I had some bonding time with Dottie
Mom and Ella came back in the evening to spend some more time with us and brought Dottie her first new hat!
Exhausted but so happy to have our sweet baby :)