In the weeks leading up to Ocho’s birth, my hips had really been aching. I had a lot of trouble finding a comfortable position, sleeping, walking, siting – nothing was good. My bath tub was the closest I came. (I’m afraid of my water bills!)
So on Thursday night, I had a board meeting. It was an insanely long one – 4 and a half hours. I finally got up out of my chair and sat on the floor. Then I just kept wiggling around trying different positions. Plenty of people were afraid I’d have the baby right then, but I knew it wasn’t labor, just hip issues! During the meeting I sent my husband a text message asking him to set me up for a massage appointment on Friday. I needed a prenatal massage, even at 41+ weeks of gestation.
So on Friday I had a busy day – take the kids to school and get a massage. The therapist was new and newly pregnant. We had a very nice time chatting about pregnancy. Despite being over due, I was very calm and not anxious to rush the end of the pregnancy. I asked her not to hit any of the labor triggering points and she did not.
Afterwards I felt pretty good. I decided that I deserved a pedicure too. So I went to the nail salon and decided to be wild and signed up for a pedicure and manicure. As I sat there reading the newest science magazine I started to notice I was having some contractions. Since my last baby was born in about three hours, I was paying attention. I knew that my husband would be totally upset if he missed the birth.
First one contraction. 10 minutes later another… I was beginning to wonder. I left the salon and headed to pick up the older two kids. They wanted to get slushies and it was as good of an excuse as any for me to get my ice chips. While I was in the drive through I decided this was probably early labor, so I bought a whole bag of the ice. I also called my husband and talked to him. I said something like, “I’m not sure it’s early labor and I don’t need you to come home right now, but be ready to drop everything and come home…” He was excited! He also tortured his co-workers by saying loudly, “What? You’re having the baby RIGHT NOW???”
Once I got home, I came to my room and took a nice long bath. The contractions didn’t stop. I wondered if my body was waiting for all my kids to get home, because I’d been so worried about collecting them in case of a rapid labor. I started to calculate how long it would be before everyone got there. About an hour for the elementary kids and Kevin was off to get Ada after work, so another hour.
Hilary and Benjamin entertained the elementary school kids once they were home. I have no clue what they were doing. I was upstairs timing contractions and trying to relax. I wondered if labor would take off quickly once everyone was home. The contractions were about five minutes apart at this point.
At some point, Benjamin came in to tell me that their bathroom ceiling was leaking. Sure enough it was! While you may wonder what this has to do with a birth story, you might want to recall the visit from the air conditioner repair man as Ada was being born, or any one of the other home issues that crept up in various labors. It was good to have this out of the way so to speak. I put a bucket under the drip and went back to my room.
Kevin got home with Ada. He came upstairs and put on some nice music and rubbed my back. We just laid quietly on the bed. It was nice and relaxing. He took care of the kids in between contractions. I found my mind wandering to weird things and obsessing – over bread. We had none in the house! So I convinced Kevin to take me to the grocery, we could walk around, maybe help labor along and pick up some things.
So we went. I walked really quickly filling my cart with comfort items like Hawaiian Punch and pudding. I scared a couple of customers, but oh well, I was a woman on a mission. As Kevin and I left the grocery, the clouds and sun setting were absolutely gorgeous. I was just anxious to get back home.