February 2008 was a leap year.
I was expecting my first baby and decidedly unsure of when he would be born. Throughout my pregnancy my OB had given me three different due dates ranging from 2/22-3/8. Right smack in the middle was the leap day. Everyone had an opinion on whether this would make a good birthday or not. I really didn't care one way or the other. I wasn't too uncomfortable and was happy for him to stay in there as long as he wanted. I was in the middle of my last semester at SDSU and the longer he stayed in, the more work I could complete before I had to juggle a newborn and coursework.
On February 27th I had a full day of classes. I started at school in the morning with two classes pretty much back to back and then I had a long break until my last evening class of the day. There was no point in leaving campus because parking was tricky, so I usually hung around the entire day. It was a long day, but not incredibly difficult as my coursework was light. My last class of the day ended at around 8:30 and I was so excited to be heading home.
On the way home I noticed a few cramps, but nothing major. Once I arrived home I relaxed on my bed chatting with Mark about our days and I continued to notice this random cramping. It wasn't painful, but it was noticeable. I thought it was odd, so we started to time it. Pretty soon we realized that they were starting every three minutes and lasted for about 45 minutes until there was one 5 minutes gap. Our directions from the doctor were to wait until I was having contractions every 3 minutes apart for an entire hour, so after the 5 minute gap we started the clock again and waited another hour before we decided that it might be time to go have a baby.
I was in zero pain, but the contractions were regular so we decided to go get checked. We both fully expected to be turned away, but were following doctors' orders. When we arrived at the Mary Birch Hospital I was measuring at 4cm dilation, and the nurses said they could for sure see my contractions on their monitors and that I was in full labor. We were shocked! We settled into our labor and delivery room and waited for something to happen. I never had any inclination to get up or move anything. We just waited. And waited.
About four hours later our nurse checked my dilation. I was still at 4 cm, so they decided to give me pitocin to amp up my contractions and move labor along. But first they asked if I would like an epidural. I was still in very little discomfort so I declined. Almost immediately after they started the pitocin in my iv the contractions kicked up. I quickly asked for the epidural and I was informed that the anesthesiologist was busy with another patient and wouldn't be available for another 45 minutes. During this time as I waited for pain medication my water broke, and the contractions continued to progress in intensity and frequency.
I am pretty positive that it didn't take 45 minutes for the doctor to arrive to administer the epidural. As quickly as the pain had set in it was relieved when the epidural was administered. I was quickly comfortable and painless again. Minutes later the nurses asked to check my dilation and I was shocked and upset to hear that I was fully dilated. I knew that it was not good to have an epidural so close to delivery. Despite the shock, I was still excited to meet my baby! I was coached by the nurses when to push. Every time I had a strong contraction (which I could no longer feel) I would be instructed to push and every time baby's heart rate would drop. So we would stop pushing for several minutes and wait for it to recover before pushing again.
By this time it was after 4:30am and my sweet husband had been awake for 24 hours. He had spent the entire day before working hard in the heat and he was exhausted. So during the breaks, he would sit down and was starting to fall asleep. I often tease him about the fact that he was sleeping during his son's birth! I'm not sure how long we went on like this, but a little after 5:00 the nurses called in a doctor to check out the situation. She was concerned about the drop in his heart rate every time I pushed and really wanted him to out. So she decided that it was in my best interest to use a vacuum extractor to deliver him. I still couldn't feel anything, so she tugged and pulled, and cut until he was finally free from my womb!
At 5:35am on February 28th, 2008 Jedidiah was born and immediately loved by so many. He weighted in at 5lbs 13oz and 19.5 inches long. He was tiny and perfect.
Now he's 10. How is it possible that I have been a parent for 10 entire years?
He is giant, handsome, and an amazing big brother. He was our tester baby, and I think we passed the parenting pretest, because he is a pretty cool kid to hang out with. Time has gone so fast, it's hard to believe that he is more than half way to adulthood! They say that the "days are long, but the years are short" and it is SO true! A few weeks ago my boys played at the beach while I was waiting for a client and I captured these photos of Jed at the Scripps Pier. I love that they are so true to his personality! He is spunky, fun, and all boy!
Happy birthday Jedidiah! Thank you for being the boy who stole my heart and made me a mama! I am so proud of the young man you are growing into right before my eyes.
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