Liam Jacob was born almost 2 weeks early, on 5/30/2011 at 8:17am. He is 5lb11oz, and 18 inches long, just a little peanut!
I was having contractions around 7pm Sunday night, but they weren't super close together (8-12 min), and weren't getting any closer together or stronger, so I thought they were just braxton hicks (but with some pain/discomfort, which I'd been having since Thursday...I could eat dinner, talk, walk through them). I went to bed around midnight that night, not thinking anything of it, because they had slowed to about every 12-20 minutes apart. The contractions woke me up again around one...braxton hicks had never woken me up before, so I started timing again. They were still only about 8-20 min apart, and really inconsistent.
At around 2am, they started coming on fast, about 4-5 min which is the point that I realized I was in labor, and by 3:30am, they were close enough and strong enough, that I went to the hospital. On the way, in the car, they were 2-3 min apart and really painful.
By the time I got there and they hooked me up to monitors and finally checked me, it was around 4:30 and I was already 6cm. I was having horrible back labor by that point, with contractions every 2 minutes. It all happened so fast...if I had known I was in labor earlier in the night, I would have gone in sooner so I could get the drugs before contractions became that strong and close together. I actually got to 8cm before they gave me the epidural around 6am...almost didn't get it since I was so close, but SO glad I did b/c they had to do some really painful repairs to me after he was born (I hate to think what would have happened if he had been a larger baby).
I was at 10cm by 7:30am and started pushing. I pushed for about 45 minutes. I was surprised at how much I could still feel, even with the epidural..not pain, but enough that I was able to catch on to pushing after just a few tries. And yes, I did poop on the table...several times...what people say is true. You really don't care in the moment. The nurse and my DH both didn't tell me, but I was curious and asked.
The recovery has been really tough. I had only a tiny tear in the perenium, and some grazes, but a pretty bad "sulcus" tear, meaning inside the vaginal wall. Mine is up near the urethra. It is still hurting pretty bad. I wasn't able to pee b/c the swelling was so bad....they put a catheter in b/c my bladder was so full, it was causing me to bleed more (displacing my uterus, so it wasn't clamping itself properly). The catheter took 5 different nurses before one could get it in, b/c the swelling was so bad. Cath came out on day 2, and I still couldn't go, so they recathed me. Again, it took 2 nurses and 4 tries to get it in b/c of the swelling. The pain was worse than labor. Finally, on day 3, cath came out again, I peed (painfully) and got to go home (can't leave til you pee).
I couldn't believe how fast everything happened. I'm not sure how long I'd consider my labor to be. I guess 12 hours from when I started timing, but it was only 6 hours from the point that I realized I was truely in labor, and 4 hours from when we arrived at the hospital. I expected such a long, drawn out process being a first time Mom...DH and I had packed all kinds of entertainment for the hospital and didn't touch any of it.
I'm in tons of pain still, but am so in love with my little guy! He's small, but super healthy, calm and content.