It has taken me almost 2 months to realize I hadn't posted Jack's birth story yet. I'm posting this for those of you who are interested and haven't heard the whole story.
By August 16th, I hadn't had ANY contractions in almost 2 weeks and seemed stuck at 1cm. I was hardly effaced at all. I was concerned about going full or post term, since the weather had been so ridiculously hot here. I was considering having the midwife schedule a c-section on my EDD just in case Jack wasn't here, so I wouldn't have to worry about getting my tubes tied later. Then late that Tuesday night, I had 2 hours of off and on "cervical pokes". And when I say pokes, I mean like someone with crazy long finger nails poking you. At my midwife appointment the next morning, they were running a little behind because another mother-to-be ran late to her appointment. The midwife checked me, and I had progressed to 2cm and had a bulging sac. I didn't know what the bulging sac meant, but I was under the impression it was very favorable. The midwife said she doubted if I would last the weekend, and vigorously shook her head when I asked about driving out to Eastland to pick up Skyla. She also suggested that I do lots of walking.
I went home and sent a text message to my friend Nicole C. asking if she wanted to go walk a local mall with me and then let the kids play in an indoor play area. Her youngest had just gone down for a nap, and they had plans for the afternoon, so we made plans to walk the next morning. The girls and I went and walked the mall for about an hour and a half, then they played for about 30 minutes before we went home. I had a couple of contractions while walking, but nothing worth timing or paying any real attention to. I didn't sleep very well that night. Probably had something to do with the fact that I got up to go to the bathroom 3 times and then I am one of those people who takes FOREVER to fall back asleep.
I woke up having had no contractions, and took the girls to pick up Nicole and her boys to walk the mall. We walked around for about 45 minutes and then let the kids play about 45 minutes. Mike got ready for work as usual, and by the time he left for work, I had only had a handful of contractions. I started having contractions about 10 minutes apart lasting 15-20 seconds around 3pm. The girls and I ran an errand to Wal-Mart to get some comfort food, bread and butter pickles, sliced pineapple, and some frozen fruit treats. My mom called to see how I was doing around 4:30 or so, and when I told her about the contractions she started calling people and getting worried that I would give birth with the girls in the van on the way somewhere. I talked with Pastor Tim, my dad, and Mike very soon after, all because my mom had made her phone calls. She was on the ball, whereas I probably would have waited at least another hour to call anyone. I also called the birthing center to give the midwife on duty a heads up that I was having time able contractions so no one would be shocked if I needed to come in later that night. My dad highly suggested going to his house, so that way the girls would have someone to watch them if I need to go to the birthing center.
This whole time, I had been finishing packing the birth center bags with the "necessities" that were still daily usage items like the camera. The girls and I went to my dad's to have a way to keep them busy while I labored. I called the midwife back to let them know that I was at my dad's and gave them his number. My dad also came home to help my oldest brother watch the girls. I talked with the midwife again, since the contractions had not picked up. She suggested going on a 30 minute power walk and then taking a warm bath to see if that had any affect on them. I don't know how far I walked in the 100+ degree heat, but I know it was farther than my dad was comfortable with. Almost as soon as I started walking, the contractions picked up and came every 1-4 minutes and lasted 15-30 seconds. They didn't subside after the warm bath either. We periodically talked with my mom and Mike, and I told him to stay and work. We would call him when I was about ready to head to the birthing center. I continued some online research I was working on until I couldn't really concentrate anymore.
I called my midwife back about 9:40pm and let her know the contraction stats(3-5 minutes and lasting 45 seconds) and that I was having problems concentrating. She asked if I wanted to come in and I said please. I guess she understood that time was getting close so she said she would meet us there in 15 minutes. Mike was still at work, but I told him to wait until his relief got there to come to the center. I also sent a text to Jamie G., who is training to become a midwife, that we were going to the birthing center if she was able to come. My dad drove me to the birthing center cracking jokes and talking about various things to help keep my mind off the contractions.
We got there at 10:02pm, and the midwife told me to go to the bathroom and then lay on the bed for a cervical check. I had progressed to almost 7cm and had an even bulgier sac. She had just finished the cervical check, when my water broke and ALL OVER that side of the bed. We are talking one serious gush! With the next contraction, I suddenly felt the urge to push and told her so. She asked if I wanted to try to wait to push until Mike got there, and I said it wasn't up to me! My dad then called Mike and told him to skip stopping by the apartment for a change of clothes. This was all going so fast, that it was only the midwife, my dad, and I there. Mike and the birthing assistant still weren't there yet. Jack was born in 5 or 6 good pushes. No tears this time, and it seemed like a lot easier birth this time around. That probably has something to do with the fact that Jack was 2lbs 6oz smaller than Genevieve!
Jackson Shay was born at 10:16pm on August 18th weighing 8lbs 2oz and 20in long. Mike was still not there, so my dad got to cut the cord. Mike got there around 10:20pm. He was in awe of how quickly it all went, and is very much in love with his son.
Jamie G. got lost in Dallas, and somehow managed to drive all the way up to Anna (50 miles or so north of where we were), but she was still able to make it to spend sometime with us before going home. It was nice to spent some time with her, because we hadn't seen her in more than a year and she and I are of kindred spirits.
There was some concern for Jackson, because I had only had water in the last 2 hours before his birth, and his sugar was a little low so he was a little jittery. After nursing several times, he was doing lots better. He is a great nurser and has been going through at times what seems like a crazy long growth spurt. His 1rst PKU came back with some abnormalities, but they were all straightened out by the time he was 2 weeks old.
I didn't have the water birth I wanted, because by the time the tub would have been filled up, Jack would still have been here already. I don't mind though. The midwife had to laugh some afterwards, because she wasn't sure if I was really in labor when I called the last time because of how calm I sounded. I guess having my kids as close together as I did helped keep me calm.
I enjoyed using a midwife instead of an OB this time around, and wouldn't have changed much. I probably would have had Mike leave work a little early and probably would have gone to the birth center a little earlier.