As baby number seven’s due date fast approaches, I figured I ought to do a Birth Story Week of all six births so far.
I know I’m driving some of you crazy with my quick and easy births. This one was still quick but at least it was extra interesting . . .
Need to catch up? Here’s birth story #1 and birth story #2.
For baby number three, we had moved from Northern California to the South Side of Chicago. I had therefore had to leave my beloved general practice doctor who had delivered my first two. Well, delivered my first one and was almost there for my second! He was really calm and easy going about everything, which was a huge blessing for me and really colored the way I viewed pregnancy and childbirth in a lasting and positive way.
In a new city, I had to find a new doctor, and try as I might, I couldn’t find a general practice doctor who also delivered babies. So, I had my first OB. It was a totally different experience. He always seemed really worried about everything. He wanted lots of tests and exams that I hadn’t done with my previous two pregnancies. If he made a recommendation, I didn’t necessarily feel I could trust him and I always wanted to get another opinion. It was a much more stressful experience, because I really never felt that we were on the same page on things.
More backstory . . . it was Chicago and we were living a couple of blocks away from my in-laws. My mother-in-law is an excellent cook, which is perhaps why I gained half-again as much weight as I had in my previous two pregnancies. And, ugh, felt huge. Also, it was late November. And cold.
My due date with baby number three was November 28th. I had had each of my first two on their due dates. So, I woke up that morning, ate breakfast, did the dishes, and sat down on the couch to start having contractions. But they didn’t come. All day. They didn’t come the next day either.
Finally on the third day after my due date, my OB’s office called wondering why they hadn’t seen me that week. I hadn’t made an appointment, because I always had my babies on their due dates.
So, on the afternoon of the December 1st, I went in to the office. The doctor was really pushing for me to go in to the hospital but I had managed two babies without any interventions, and was really hesitant to start down that path that all the natural childbirth books tell you will surely end up with an unnecessary c-section. Step one is always going to the hospital too early (dum dum DUM!).
I went home to think about it. We lived across two sets of railroad tracks from the hospital, which in Chicago could mean a delay of ten, twenty, even forty minutes if you get stopped by trains at each track going each direction. Unlikely, but possible. Then, it started snowing. So we decided to go in.
We didn’t get stopped by any trains and arrived at the hospital about 8pm.
It was a very different experience than my first two arrivals at the hospital. I wasn’t going to have a baby at any moment like with my first two, so it was certainly a less intense experience getting checked in.
For the first time, they had time to hook me up to the machine that goes “bing.”
Me: I’d like to be unhooked and walk around.
Nurse: Oh, we don’t usually do that.
Nurse: I’d have to call and get permission from your doctor.
Nurse: I’ll have to see what we can do.
Me: (unhooking self and getting up) Great, let me know what you find out.