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2010-11-05  (41 weeks)
Welcome Audrey Grace!
We've made it to the hospital and back!  My post in the early hours of the first turned out to be right on target.  So here's Audrey's birthday story:

I rolled over in bed around 3:30 am and thought I'd pulled a muscle.  Another contraction followed about 5 minutes later, so I knew for sure to pay attention.  They were much stronger than the braxton hicks I'd been having.  Right away I needed to go to the bathroom and my body was in evacuation mode.  With the contractions and the small amount of "bloody show", I woke up Alex to alert him that I was pretty sure I was in labor and I'd be out in the living room.  I didn't want to alarm Laurel, who was asleep in our bed with us.  I spent the next hour pacing and stopping now and then at the sofa to breathe through a contraction.  I called over to Leora around 4:30 just to let her know what was going on.  She was just as surprised to hear from me and I was to be calling!  I told her no rush that I would deal with it for a little while and call her when I was starting to feel like I needed support.  I called Megan and Mom around 5 am and Leora again shortly after.  I was having much stronger contractions and they were coming faster and even stringing together.  When Leora arrived, she had me sit on a pillow and lean over the ottoman so that the pressure would stay off of my back.  I waited until about 6 am and then decided I'd had enough.  The contractions were so strong and so close together, I thought it was time to get to the hospital.  Contractions continued on the drive and we checked into valet at about 6:30.  Alex wheeled me in a wheelchair up to the labor and delivery floor and they took me straight into a room.  I had an IV put in immediately and I think the nurse was immediately alerted to the fact that my contractions were strong and close together.  She wanted to know why I'd waited so long!  When I think of my labor with Laurel, I'm pretty sure I only stayed home for 2 hours and with Audrey, just 2.5 hours.  So really not that much difference in home laboring time.  The nurse gave me a quick physical exam and right away alerted another nurse to call the doctor.  I asked her how far along I was and she said I was 9.5 cm and would be delivering naturally!  I had asked for an epidural right when I got in and apparently it was too late!  I know women do it naturally all the time, but I was convince I was not meant to be one of those women.  I couldn't do it with Laurel and I couldn't imagine now pushing a baby out naturally.  I was definitely upset, I didn't think I could do it.  The doctor rushed over as fast as she could and before I knew it, they wanted me to push with the next contraction.  I didn't look at the clock but I can't have pushed for more than 10 minutes.  One long push had the baby's head in view.  The next push ended up being a long one and though I tried to back off and rest on it, everyone urged me on and in that one long push the baby was out!  She was born at 7:01 am.  The nice thing about not having an epidural is that I could feel everything - for better or worse.  So yes, it was excruciating.  But I could also feel her coming out and could actually figure out how to push.  I was so numb with Laurel, that's probably why it took an hour.  I had torn a little along the scar area from where I tore with Laurel and was stitched up a little bit.  Otherwise, everything went smoothly and quickly! 
The hospital made some minor changes.  Everything was done in-room now.  The baby is washed, measured, weighed, etc. all in the room.  Audrey weighed in at 8 lbs even and was 21.5" long.  Since everything went so well, I was moved on to the postpartum rooms within just a couple of hours.  All in all, the hospital stay was very smooth.  I enjoy laying around and being fed:).  The nurses and doctors all told me I could leave after the first day but I stayed! 
We're home now and pushing on as a family of 4.  And this ends my maternity blog for Audrey!  Visit for a continuation from now on:).
2010-11-01  (41 weeks)
Well we made it all the way to 41 weeks!  We had a check up on Friday, at 40 and 5 days and not much was happening.  The amniotic fluid again was nice and full, baby checked out fine on the fetal monitor.  The doctor did a physical exam and said I was about 1.5 cm.  So with everything looking fine and not like the baby was in any rush, we scheduled an induction.  The date we picked - November 1st.  We were to go in at 8 am and I would have to start meds to force labor.  I was really anxious about that prospect, fearing the worst for back labor and nausea.  But things may be changing!  I woke up a little over a half hour ago with very strong contractions.  After a trip to the bathroom, I have a very week "blood show".  So we may be starting this on our own!  Just as I never would have picked November for her entrance, I had given up on going into labor on my own.  So at this point, I'm just keeping an eye on things.  The contractions aren't coming very fast yet and although they're strong, they're not unbearable.  So we'll see what happens from here!  I'm sitting in the living room while Alex stays in bed with Laurel. 

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