Will I Stay or Will I Go? Dilation and Hospital Admissions

Today we have a beautiful birth story from the incredibly stylish and graceful Kristin Johnson of the Strollers and Stilettos blog. Strollers and Stilettos is chock full of fashion tips, motherhood gems, and life inspiration. When she was in labor with her second son, Teddy, Kristin arrived at the hospital at 2.5cm dilated. Would she have to spend another hour in the car going back home and then back to the hospital again? Or would her dilation change? Read on to witness this heart-warming birth story.

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By Kristin Johnston of Strollers and Stilettos

Thursday, January 4, my husband Cody "had a feeling" and decided to work from home - it was a good thing he did because I began having contractions on and off that morning. After lunch, they became much more consistent and by 7, we knew we would be going to the hospital soon! We left our son with a beloved neighbor and left for the hospital around 7:30. Contractions in the car are no fun!

I had been 2cm and 50% effaced at my appointment the previous Wednesday, so imagine my surprise when the nurse, sweet nurse Q, checked me and I was only 2.5cm dilated! "And it looks like your contractions are slowing down too..." she said.

Imagine my surprise when I was only 2.5cm dilated!

So the plan was for me to walk for 40 minutes, get checked again, and then walk for another 40 if necessary. If nothing was happening after that, then I would be sent home. Thinking of riding in the car for 30 minutes to go back home and then another 30 minutes to get back to the hospital was daunting.

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I prayed that the walking would help and got to work - and it worked! After nearly completing my fourth lap around the maternity wing, I was in so much pain, I could barely stand upright, and I had gotten very dizzy and faint. Suddenly, I was surrounded by nurses holding me up, helping me with smelling salts, asking me if I know my name! They swooped in with every precaution and I am so grateful for that! Even though it turned out to be just some exhaustion, it was a little scary feeling like that knowing you are about to go through labor! Nurse Q checked me again and I had progressed to 5cm! We were quickly admitted and told that the anesthesiologist was ready to get me my epidural.

I prayed that the walking would help, and it worked!... I had progressed to 5cm!

With my first child, I wanted to go as natural as possible. I wanted no drugs and no epidural. Fast forward to 24 hours in labor and I was hit with the most horrific contraction and pain I had ever felt in my body. Knowing that something like that was on its way, I knew that I wanted the epidural right away this time. Props to all you mommies out there who can do it without the help, but for those of us who need the extra comfort - don't discredit your hard work! Its not called "labor" for nothing! 

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The epidural went in great thanks to the wonderful Doctor B and I was pain free for the rest of the labor and delivery. They broke my water around midnight or 1am, and then the waiting game started.

Around 4am, Nurse Q came in to check me and said it was time! I woke up Cody and asked him if he was ready to have a baby! Nurse Q wanted to see if my body and I remembered how to push correctly and had me try a "practice" push with the next contraction. "Oh wow - yep you remember, I can see the top of his head!" The doctor and another nurse was called in and 4 pushes and 15 minutes later my sweet Teddy was in my arms!

We were so so happy...

We were so so happy to have him here safely! He arrived weighing 7lbs 6.5oz and measured 20 and 5/8". Daddy quickly bonded with Teddy, cuddling skin-to-skin, and it was so sweet to see two of the most important people in the world to me just snuggling each other.

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