I had been having inconsistent painful contractions for over a week prior to when I actually went into labor. I had been so frustrated because the contractions were painful and would regulate to 5 mins apart for hours. After a few hours they would die off. Since I was trying for a vbac it was important that I labor at home for a little while. On July 31st I had my regular 39 week appointment. Since my ob was out of town I saw the midwife. A few weeks prior I had scheduled a repeat csection for August 5th if I did not go into labor on my own before then. So at the appointment I asked the midwife to strip my membranes since I was starting to think I would never go into labor. She called it the rotorooter lol. It was a little painful but mostly just uncomfortable. At that point I was dilated to a 3 and maybe 50% effaced. She said everything was very soft and things looks promising. She then said go home and have sex so that sweep will work. At that point I was in so much pain and felt so huge that I couldn't imagine having sex. We did though. Somehow it worked. While we were Dtd I started to have uncomfortable contractions but figured it was more false labor. My husband left for work a little before 6pm. About 6:30pm I noticed the contractions were picking up so I text my husband just to stay by his phone. As the evening went on they kept picking up and about 10 I called L&D for advice. The nurse told me to drink water and lay down so I did. Omg when I laid down the contractions became horribly more painful. I'm not sure why but I couldn't handle it. I text my husband at 11pm that I was starting to get nervous so he came home about 11:30. I took a bath and tried to lay in the bed. Once again this made everything so much worse. Contractions were 5-6 mins apart and at 1am I felt I should at least get checked. The pain was 'ok'. It hurt but if I was standing I could get through. So my husband took our son to my brothers and then me to the hospital. I was having regular contractions and was 5cm. Still about 50% effaced. As soon as I said vbac the tone of the nurses voice changed. She went to talk to the doctor and came back saying he would like me to walk for an hour. So I did. The entire time everything was getting more intense. So she checked me again. I was still a 5 and maybe 70%. She said the doc wanted to give me a shot of stadol and for me to go home and come back when my contractions were 2 mins apart. I laughed. I couldn't believe I was being sent home. I thought for sure I would be getting the epidural soon but this doctor would not do it. The shot of pain meds was the worst decision I made. I felt drunk, tired and out of control. I couldn't handle the pain because I didn't feel in control of my body. My husband ran me a bath and sat with me In there rubbing my back trying to calm me down. I wasn't saying much but I think he could tell I was starting to panic that the on call doc didn't want to deal with a vbac. After the bath I tried to relax in our room. Contractions went from 5 mins apart to 2-3 mins. at times it seemed they were right on top of each other. I was crying saying I would end up having this baby at home. My husband demanded I get in the car but I didn't want to go back since I hadn't been gone long and they would think I was a big baby. It was about 4ish I believe? So we get to the hospital and sure enough contractions are super painful and 2-3 mins apart. I couldn't walk or sit really. I was constantly trying to get comfortable. The nurse checked me and I was still a 5 and 70%. She came back and said the doctor wanted to know if I wanted a csection. I burst into tears. I wanted the epidural. I felt like if I would have got the epidural I would be able to relax and things could maybe progress. I asked her if they could do this and maybe break my water she said he wouldn't do that but if I wanted I could wait for the next doctor to come in at 7am. At this point it was 6:30am. I almost said just do the csection but my husband reminded me how hard I had already worked and what's 30 more mins. This nurse was no help. Apparently 30 more mins was 15 more painful contractions. My mom was in the background saying that I was stressing my baby out with 12 hours of labor and I should just give up. Of course the crying kept going. I never thought I would cry during labor but I felt so defeated. So the shift change came and the best nurse ever walked in to talk to me. She reminded me how to breath Better with a soothing voice. She also went to get me a ball to lean on. She was amazing and by far so much more helpful than the original nurse. Before the new doctor even came to the hospital she heard of the situation and had me moved into a room. She came in soon after and introduced herself and told me she would do her best to help me out. My original ob was very vbac supportive but because she was on vacation this was happening. So the ob came in and broke my water about 7:30am. This made things more intense. I started to get a little vocal and found I needed to hold someone's hand. This is completely unlike me. I rarely ask for anything or need anything from anyone but this was different. About 9:20ish the guy for the epidural came in. I was checked. Still a 5 but now 100% effaced. I was so frustrated. After 15-16 hours of labor with no pain relief I got the epidural. It was heaven. Really. Once the epidural was done my contractions picked way up. I could feel the pressure but I also had the nurse telling me. After a few contractions the nurses started moving me around and alarms started to go off. My baby's heart rate was dropping with every contraction and hardly coming back up before the next one hit. The doctor rushed in and tried to talk to me calmly. I remember telling her "I don't want you to think I am a mom that wants a vbac at all cost and will fight you on this. If my baby is in trouble I am ready for a csection" with that they put a new medication in my epidural to numb me better and within 10-15 mins I was in the OR. I am a very petite person. Infact my doctor with my son talked me into my first csection because he felt I was too small to birth a 6lb10oz baby. When they pulled my daughter out the doctor was in complete shock that she was so big. It turns out she was 8lbs11oz and 21inches long. She came out with fluid in her lungs and in shock. They had to suction her several times to get her to cry. Then in recovery when I was trying to breastfeed she kept coughing out fluid on my chest. It was very overwhelming and obvious she was struggling. After some more suctioning they were able to get it all out and she could breastfeed. I was not upset that my vbac had failed. All I wanted was to try. I got 16 hours or so of trying and then my baby was in danger. To me there was no second thought when I saw the severe heart decels. I'm not sure how an almost 9lb baby fit in my body but she is beautiful.