Everybody told me I would know it the moment I am in labor. Sounds pretty believable, right? Wrong!
So, this baby-to-be-born was due on the 17th of October 2010. Although my pregnancy was mostly hassle-free and I was fairly active most days, I began to get antsy towards the end of September. My parents were here to help out with the delivery and taking care of the newborn, JG had a new job to start soon and more importantly, we could not buy any of the baby stuff before the baby was born because we didn’t want to jinx anything.
Due date came and due date went with nothing happening. I had an appointment with my OB/GYN on the 18th. She examined me and said she would wait a week and then induce although she strongly suspected I would go into labor earlier. The exam left me completely exhausted and all I did the rest of that day was sleep. The next day, we got a slow start. JG was waiting to start his new job and so was at home with me. We ate a lazy breakfast, watched some TV and around 6 in the evening went out for a walk. I started feeling a few cramps sometime during the walk, but I thought they were from the previous day’s exam at the OB’s office. We went over to my brother’s for dinner and throughout I had a nagging pain in my lower back and stomach. We got home after dinner, ate ice cream, watched a movie and yet the pain did not go away. That is when we decided to call the advice nurse to make sure there was nothing to worry about.
After listening to everything I had to say, the nurse concluded I was in Labor, setting off my panic button. I kept calling the nurse every hour or so giving her an update of my situation. Finally around 4am, the nurse said I sounded a lot like I was ready for delivery and asked us to come in anytime. We immediately called my mom and asked her to join us to the hospital. By the time she got to our place, I took a shower, ate breakfast and got ready to get to the hospital, it was 6am, a good twelve hours since I have started labor.
We get into the car and just before strapping my seat belt, I call the hospital to make sure they know we are on our way. Apparently shifts changed at 6am and I spoke to a new nurse who told me very matter -of -fact-ly that there were no labor rooms available and that I would have to go to a different hospital. To a hospital that we have never seen before, don’t know where to park and what to expect. One of the most important piece of advice given by every pregnancy book or website was to be prepared for any change in plan. Well, we were left with no choice but to program directions to the new hospital in the GPS and start driving. We got to the hospital a little before 7am.
Once they checked me in, they began the routine tests and found that the baby was slowing down a bit. They decided to strap an oxygen mask on my face and poke an IV on my arm to help the baby out. I agreed reluctantly. Once things were stabilized, they shifted me to the active labor room from the examination room.
Around 10am, they asked if I wanted an epidural. I gladly accepted one to relieve the pain and get some much needed shut eye. I got an epidural inserted around 11am and they let me rest before it was time to push. In about 10 minutes there was a rush of doctors and nurses in to the room responding to alarm set off by the baby’s heart rate monitor. Apparently her heart rate was dropping. They tried injecting some fluid to simulate amniotic fluid and ease the baby. They monitored for a while, but it did not work. So they decided to stop labor temporarily and wait for the baby to change position.
We waited an hour and a half but the baby was in no mood to move. They asked if I wanted to be re-induced and give natural birth another shot. Mom and JG agreed that it was the best thing to do, given the circumstances. So they induced me around 1.15-1.20 to set off second round of contractions.
Again in 15 minutes, there was a big group of doctors and nurses in the room because the baby’s heart rate dropped to dangerous levels. This time, there was no asking, no deliberation, nothing. They yelled among themselves that they had 30 seconds to stop the contractions and everybody poked an injection on to the part of my body they could lay their hands on, while I was being rushed to the OT for a C-Section. The JG now recalls that the scene looked straight out of a movie with PR systems announcing an emergency in so-and-so room and asking everyone to prepare for a C-Section in the OR.
My mom and JG were left behind in the room not knowing what was going to happen next. I concentrated on JG’s eyes while I was being wheeled out of the room, because for some reason, it felt like it was the last time I would see him. It was in fact the last time I saw him as just my husband.
Once my contractions were stopped, they prepped me for C-Section and asked JG to suit up to come in and watch. After 10 minutes, they announced that they were beginning the procedure. JG and I held hands in anticipation of the big moment when we heard and shriek followed by a loud cry.
With that loud cry on October 20th 2010 at 1.46pm, weighing 6lb 7oz and measuring 47.6cm, little Sahiti entered this world and changed life as we knew it, forever!