All my labors have started with my water breaking first and then rather short and quick labors. This was a new for me. I was lying in bed resting when I knew my contractions were starting. They felt different from the Braxton Hicks I had been having for the past month. I just rested and waited for the next one to come. They were not painful just knew it was it. I finally got out of bed to go rest in the tub to see if I could relax or if they would stop. I got in the tub and well could not relax in fact I started to panic when each contraction started. I did not want to go through what I did with Smiley. I did not want to ride to the hospital during transition. I got out, dressed, woke up HooDoo, threw my bag down the stairs, and went to wake up Daniel who was napping. I told him I was in labor, I was starting to panic and did not want to repeat our last time, I did not want to feel anything, let's just get to the hospital please! So he got up dressed and called his Mom. My Mom was on the way to our house with the other kids. I paced around the living room floor singing to myself "he's able he's able I know he's able, I know my Lord is able to carry me through." We were ready and out the door when I heard voices. I thought "Wow, sarah is fast" but then realized it was my Mom and the kids. I told her to get the kids back in the car because we were going to the hospital. This was 5 close to 6pm. She asked "what about the cake?" and I said "bring it with us, we'll have birthday cake for the baby!" [She and the kids made a surprise birthday cake for me.] So we drove to the hospital and I have to admit I enjoyed the ride. No pain, just relaxing. We got to the hospital and up to the 4th floor. Mom and Sarah met us there as well. They had me to in the exam room to make sure I was in labor. I was 5cm -2 station and contractions were irregular but coming so they admitted me. Room 410!! Yeah!!! smiles from me and Sarah because HooDoo and Eliana were born in that room. 414 is the hard labor rooms of Peacock and Smiley! I got settled in the room and the nurse is starting to explain their way of doing birth. I tell her that I don't need an IV or full time monitoring that my doctor has okayed hep lock and intermittent monitoring. She tells me it is hospital policy and that I have to. I tell her if there is a problem they can call my doctor but I refuse it. I will walk and remain free of straps. Sarah mentioned my birth plan and had a copy to give her [great thinking Sarah and THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!!] She then went with our plan and was so nice. In fact she did not even come every hour. Pretty much when I was ready or asked to be checked. She was really great. So at 6pm I was 5cm and then at the next check I was 6cm and -1 station. Contractions were the same. Not regular but sometimes 3 on top of each other or one long contracion. None really painful just achy. The kids were all in the room and very excited. Peacock through the whole night kept asking "when is the baby going to be born?" or "this is taking longer than Smiley." Smiley was my longest of 8 hour labor. He remembers sitting in the waiting room [with Smiley I got to the hospital at 10cm dilated and was not born for another 5 hours!] My Mom and Mom would take the kids for walks and Sarah kept me company. Dad and Daniel sat in the waiting room which is where Daniel likes best! My next check I was 7cm and -2 station. I decided then to get in the tub. It was relaxing but did not help contractions become stronger or more regular. I mainly swayed back and forth or walked. That seemed to keep the contractions coming. They never hurt or had to relax and breath through. As slow and regular as they were I continued to dilate and drop. Up until 3am I was 9cm dilated and 0 station. I could not believe I could be this far along and still no pain, no breathing through contractions, I was walking the halls with HooDoo, and felt guilty for not being in pain! I started to actually want to be in pain... crazy huh? I thought about breaking the my water. Pros and cons for it? Reason to break my water? Sarah and I talked about it and pretty much decided that as slow as it is labor is progressing, no reason to rush, and just let it happen. The kids were asleep in the room except for hooDoo. He stayed by my side the whole time. He would help the nurse strap the monitors on me when needed. He would rub my legs or belly just a wonderful support. He wants to deliver babies when he grows up! Daniel came in at 4am and slept on the couch with Rachel and Joshua. My next exam showed me as the same. I know everyone was tired and it was getting long but they were able to rest some. I thank everyone for their patience... I felt guilty at times for keeping them there so late and everyone so tired. But Sarah kept assuring me that they wanted to stay and it was fine. HooDoo finally fell asleep on the bed at 7am. My doctor came on call the next morning and came to our room about 8am. He asked what I wanted to do since by now the contractions had really came to a stop and still same 9cm 0 station. I told him I will break the water and see how that goes. I thought that once my water broke that contractions would start right away and HARD! Broke water at 8:20am They did not. Nothing happened. I sat in the bed shaking. Sarah said "Letisha, do not fear what is not there." I thought you are right! This is crazy. I decided to get up and go sit on the toilet. I would rather the gush went into the toilet than in the bed or on the floor. I did not want to stay in bed anyway... I have to remain up and moving through labor. I went into the bathroom and swayed back and forth and did a few squats. The gush came but still not hard breath through contractions. Finally they came. I had maybe 3 hee hooo breath through contractions and then oh I felt pressure and the baby was coming. Sarah asked me a question through the hee hoo contractions which I was not sure if I answered her. She said I did not and decided to give me a few more minutes. Then Leigh called and she heard me moaning a HERE COMES THE BABY SOMEONE GET IN HERE! So she hung up the phone came in and saw the baby starting to crown. With my moaning they got the kids out of the room and Sarah grabbed Little Mama for her to see the birth of her new sibling. Sarah said she was giggling with joy kinda at my moaning funny sounds. She was not afraid at all. Sarah washed her hands in case she was needed, told Mom to get the nurse/doctor and Mom went down to the nurses station. Later Sarah told me that the nurse said she had just told the doctor when he asked that I was fine and nothing was happening. They did not expect me to have the baby that fast after contractions really did seriously start. By the time the nurse came in the bathroom I was standing over the toilet with the head out. She kept telling me to walk forward to which I said I was not moving. The nurse had never experienced a birth like this so I gave her a wonderful experience. My doctor came right in, did not say a word and caught the baby and handed the baby to me right away. I sat on the toilet and held our baby. I then looked to see that we had a girl! It was Angel Baby! I sat on the toilet and just kissed hugged our Angel Baby. The nurse told me "your baby is not breathing we need to get her to the oxygen." I said "she's fine. See she is breathing just not screaming!" She kept telling me she's not pinking up. I was getting really frustrated with her and being pushy. She was fine and no problem. The nurse admitted later that she was fine and the lights in the bathroom made her think differently. HooDoo was too tired to cut the cord and he really wanted to. But anyway, we cut the cord and I thought it seemed short because I could not pull the baby up my to chest. We then made it to the bed and cuddled from there. Still amazed that God gave us a little girl on Christmas Eve afte a long but painless labor. The boys made it in and each kissed their new sister. Little Mama's account of the birth "it was purple and it came out!"
So it is really possible to have a 16 hour labor and no pain. I mean even the pain at the end when I was moaning/pushing the baby out was not painful. I am just in awe over the easy labor. I told my Mom that I think someone was praying me a natural epidural because I did not feel any pain at all. I really needed this because I feared I had fallen off the natural birth bandwagon! I thank everyone for their prayers and keeping the kids occupied during labor. Thanks Kim for keeping everyone informed. I thank God for our "gracious gift."