Well, my DS#1 was 6 days early and labor started at 4am with water breaking resulting in a 4.5 hour labor total. I did not have an pain interventions that time, so I wasn't expecting any this time either. So, I read a lot... I highly recommend Ida May's Guide to Childbirth.
This pg had been completely different from the beginning and so was the whole experience of childbirth. I was over 40 weeks and getting real frustrated. I was getting convinced that he just wasn't going to arrive. I had been having a few evenings of 2 hours of "contractions" but they stopped both times. I awoke Saturday June 13th with some pains, but wasn't sure what they were. I also awoke to the sound of my 4 year old coughing with croup! He has asthma, so everything gets complicated with him. So, I put that on the front burner and got a message to the on call doctor who told us to get to the office to be seen at 8am. (I told her I was likely in labor, but needed to know what was up with DS#1 before laboring) And I woke up all the grandparents letting them know that we most likely would need help sometime today with DS#1.
After getting DS#1 seen by the pedi, we headed home so I could time my contractions since they were getting more and more uncomfortable. My MIL came over and my DH went to get the medicine for DS#1. By the time he came back, I suggested a short walk in the neighborhood to make sure these were real contractions....and they intensified during the walk.
So, we headed to the hospital at about 10am and arrived by 10:30am. The docs were surprised we were coming that soon, but after reminding them of my fast first delivery, they agreed. I was checked in triage and measured 2-3 cm and 80% effaced...in active labor, so they kept me. I asked to walk to which they agreed. I walked for an hour at a time and then got in bed to be monitored for 15 minutes...we did this 2-3 times. After 3 hours of walking, they checked and I hadn't progressed at all. Then I was given the option of breaking my water. My mom, DH and nurse all discussed the option of walking more and letting it break on its own versus doc breaking it. And after knowing that on my own it could be hours and even a day or so, and with how quickly I went last time once my water was broken and knowing it would likely be shorter than that.....I was amenable. I knew that it meant that the contractions would be tougher, but felt up to the challenge. And I knew that sending me home to walk, there was a chance we wouldn't make it back to the hospital.
I was trying to smile which did help with the pains. I had my DH's ipod on with Enya to calm me. I repeated to my son that we wanted to meet him. I told him that we were ready for him to come out. And I repeated to myself that I could do this! Everyone was fantastic keeping the lights off and not disturbing me in my laboring unless I asked for something. They broke my water at 3:34pm and when they checked me 50 mins later, I was already 8cm.I saw the doc getting ready at that point. After them trying to position me to push from my back, I suggested a move onto all 4's, which is what I had done last time and after 5 minutes of pushing, at 4:57pm he was born. It was only 1 hour and 23 mins after my water was broken. And I had no tears at all and was feeling great right afterwards which amazed many nurses.
It was an empowering experience! They let me hold him naked immediately on my chest and it was incredible...especially to witness the first time he opened his eyes!
Now, I'm just trying to take it easy and not overdo it because I feel really good.