Lydia Afton Jackson was born at 7:53am on Friday morning. She weighed 8lbs and 3oz and was 21 1/4 inches long. My parents got into town on Monday night, making the 13 hour drive in one day. It was great to have a few days together at home before having a baby since the last time I saw them was at Christmas in Utah and I was so sick I just lived in the bathroom and didn’t spend much time with them.
On Wednesday I had my membranes stripped and could tell all day Thursday that labor was coming. I was feeling a bit frustrated that I wasn’t obviously making progress and on Wednesday night after the kids were in bed Andrew and I played Quirkle to distract me. When my parents got back from their walk my mom joined in and played until about 9:30 pm.
By this point I started to notice contractions and I wanted to get some sleep before they became stronger. I slept off and on until 2am. I woke up really hungry and figured it would be a good time to grab a snack before going to the hospital. My dad happened to wake up as I was heading downstairs and joined me there. While I ate and breathed through contractions he tried to find the 2 inch cockroach that we spotted on our kitchen counter and quickly ran away.
I was starting to get annoyed by everything and just wanted to be in a dark, quiet space so I woke up Andrew figuring labor was in full force. We made it to the hospital in record time (roads are deserted at 3am) and with only 4 contractions.
When we got there I was dilated to 5 and absolutely in labor. At first I wasn’t going to get an epidural but then complete exhaustion hit as well as uncontrollable shaking. I realized that I would love to be able to rest before and after she’s born and the epidural helps, as well as to slow down how quickly she would be born so I hopefully wouldn’t tear. It took about an hour and a half before I got the epidural in place but I was handling labor well the entire time and didn’t feel like there needed to be a huge rush.
I got a covid test once they transferred me from triage. The young guy came in and said, “Don’t grab my hands.” I think I gave him a death stare because Andrew just looked at me and said, “I’ll hold your hands.” I asked the guy what he did to win the lottery to do covid tests on laboring women: “I want to be in pediatrics”.
I was at a 7 or 8 once the epidural had taken effect. We rested for a little bit – neither Andrew or I had any sense of time. I eventually took my mask off which was a relief, but Andrew had to keep his on. Then around 7:35 I felt like pushing. My water hadn’t broken yet but once it did she came pretty quick. Her head came partly out but then she got stuck. It took quite a bit of tugging/pulling/pushing to get her out and there were a few tense moments. Turns out her hand was up by her face and made it so she didn’t quite fit. I’m super grateful I had the epidural because it made the moment not a big deal.
When she was evaulated they said that she had been in there longer than she needed to be because the vernix was gone. It was a validating comment because she had been measuring a 1.5 weeks ahead the entire pregnancy and I was surprised she made it to her due date.
We just spent over 24 hours in the hospital. Andrew was able to get us food to eat since the hospital delivered small portions of southern cooking for every meal (fried and buttered, lots of grits). Lydia figured out eating and pooping immediately. We didn’t get much sleep there and I was thrilled to go home early Saturday afternoon.