(This was taken on our practice run to the hospital on Sunday. Monday morning at 1AM the contractions were too strong to get a picture.)
When we arrived at the hospital we had to enter through the ER since it was 1AM. As soon as Joel wheeled me in the door they knew what we were there for and called up to labor and delivery while Joel filled out a very short form. Then we waited for a man to wheel us to the other side of the hospital (literally the opposite side of the hospital). When he saw me he said "We're in for a long walk". My thoughts were then you better get started.
The wheel chair made a horrible noise going down the hall, and they thought about changing it out. I didn't care what noise it was making I just wanted to get upstairs. We were in room 309 and I remember they were about to pass it and I was like that's it! The poor guy said "Sure enough I am glad you saw it". How is it that I am the one having contractions yet I find the room and the two guys don't.
My nurse was nurse Penny. She immediately started the assessment to see where I was. So at about 2 AM I was dilated to just over 4 cm. She looked at me and said this is definitely it. Joel was glad to hear that labor wasn't going to stop again, but I already knew that this was it.
She asked me if I wanted my epidural and I said yes. I was a little surprised that I was already far enough along to get one. The problem was that I took my medicine! Boy was I regretting that decision! You see I have a blood clotting disorder and have to give myself an injection twice a day. I skipped my morning dosage because I thought I was in labor, but since the contractions had stopped I went ahead and took my evening dose.
In order for me to have an epidural the medication needed to be out of my system for 12 hours! I took the shot around 7:30PM and at this point it was about 2:30AM. So about 7 hours had passed. The nurse was so sweet and said I put a rush on getting your blood work. We will check your levels and see if enough of it is out of your system. So they came and took my blood about 10 minutes later. Then it was time to just wait and endure the contractions until we heard if it was safe or not.
About this time my mom and sisters arrived. I have never in my whole life been told to breathe so many times!
The blood results came back around 3AM and I could get the epidural!!! I was at a higher risk for complications, but I could get it.
Lisa was my hero! (My anesthesiologist!) It took a few minutes for it to kick in and it was so hard to stay still when they were putting it in, but I got it just in time. Seriously, at the point I got it my contractions were about a minute apart and lasting a 1.5-2 minutes.
After the epidural was in full effect they did another check and I was at 5.5 cm. Joel was able to leave the room and get some food and caffeine while my mom and sisters waited with me. When my sisters came back in the room after the epidural they said I was a totally different person. And I was, I felt like a human again. About this time, my in laws came in and said hello and let us know they were there and ready.
The nurse told me to get some sleep and she would check me before the shift change. She excepted that the epidural would slow down my labor so to not be surprised if I was only at a 6 or 7 in an hour or two.
Every one left the room and Joel and I tried to get some sleep. While sleeping, my blood pressure kept dropping and an alarm kept going off. When I say dropping it was at 73/40 at one point. The nurse came in and ask me how I was feeling. I told her I was completely fine. (When I got to the hospital it was at 120/80, which is normal for some people and really high for me. After my epidural it dropped to 96/56, I told the anesthesiologist that was normal for me. I don't think she believed me). Anyway, they determined that since Landry was fine and I felt fine they would just leave it.