Here's the looooong and the short of it. Feel free to skip details and go directly to the pictures if you prefer.
It all started on a Thursday morning, five days past our due date. At a routine NST (non-stress test) contractions were registering six and a half minutes apart, each lasting four to five minutes long. This was a big increase since an earlier NST Monday. We knew I was already between 3 and 4 cms dilated so we figured delivery could be in 24 hours or less -- good news for a lady in her 10th Month of pregnancy! Alas, contractions continued and increased throughout the day. When Jared returned from work we walked, washed the car, cleaned up the house, packed the hospital bags and prepared for possibly a middle of the night run to the hospital. But, as with all things pregnancy little is predictable and at 4am Friday morning the contractions completely went away and I slept soundly.
Waking up Friday morning I felt fantastic...which was frustrating. Maggie wasn't moving much and neither was my uterus it appeared. We called the doctor to inform him of the situation and went in to get checked. Friday morning we were 3 1/2 cm dilated but another NST revealed Maggie and I were both in great health and contractions were few and far in between. Luckily the beautiful weather couldn't allow us to dwell much. We went for Pancakes (world's best at First Watch) and to walk the KC Zoo (leaves much to be desired). Sporadic contractions happened throughout the day, and were usually more intense, but much to our dismay no real pattern developed. Though Dr. Matile said we were "favorable" to deliver very soon, I fully expected we'd be waiting until our inducement appointment scheduled for Monday morning.
Saturday morning I felt completely sore. I figured after nearly a week of contracting my muscles were officially worn out. I ignored what I thought might be contractions, or could just be some serious muscle spasms, and enjoyed the weather by taking a nap in the backyard and visiting a friend's house. By the time Jared had started making dinner that evening I couldn't ignore the pain any longer and we started trying to time what might be some serious contractions. Because the pain was more continuous rather than come and go's, highs and low, timing was a bit tricky. After a few more symptoms which made me wonder if I was leaking water we decided to call the doctor...not our doctor because he was off this weekend. We spoke to his partner, Dr. Moore (side note: our only real wish for our delivery was that Dr. Matile would deliver). She advised we just go by the hospital to get checked and make sure everything was on the up and up.
THE LABOR AND DELIVERY (this is the short part)
6:30pm we visited Labor and Delivery for another NST and to get a quick check to make sure my water hadn't broke. A couple hours and a couple test later we found out I was having 1 minute contractions, every couple minutes, was nearly 4cm dilated, and while my water hadn't broke it was leaking from somewhere. We were being admitted.
In another few hours they'd broken my water, given me an epidural, and immediately dilated to 10cms. The doctor gave me an option to push if I wanted or I could rest for an hour and let Maggie descend on her own. Wanting to rest, I took the waiting option. Another hour the doctor returned and asked if i wanted to push. Sure, why not. We pushed through 3 contractions and Magdalene Elizabeth Flinn was delivered within minutes at 12:26am on Sunday morning. No pain, no injuries...no cone head! It was a miraculous experience. Jared and I were so amazed by how quickly and wonderfully it all went. Were we seriously just making dinner 6 hours ago in our kitchen?
I left out the one hour that wasn't so wonderful...the one hour when they broke my water and the contractions went from a pain level of 5 to 500 and never took a break. I did remember not to yell at my husband, but I do believe a few screaming curse words directed at no one particular came out. God bless the person who invented the epidural! God bless women who do this without one.
That's our story. 41 weeks of pregnancy, a few days of laboring on our own, a few hours laboring in the hospital and the result...pure bliss!
Magdalene "Maggie" Elizabeth Flinn
named for our maternal great grandmothers
Born Sunday, August 23, 2009 at 12:26am
8lbs 4 oz - 19 inches
How I Handled Contractions
How Jared Handled Contractions
Our Awesome Nurse -- She is an Angel
Immediately After Being Born
The Flinn Village Officially Extended
Maggie Getting Her First Check-Up
She Entered the World Bright Eyed and Curious
We Prayed for Healthy and Strong. God Delivered.
Daddy's Little Girl
Maggie's First Nap
Grammy Arrived Just In Time
Mommy's "Push Present" from Daddy
(Maggie Gets This When She Gets Older)
One Day Old
How We Told the Neighbors
(Jared's Second Surprise for Me)