About a week and a half before my due date, I started to have gnarly contractions throughout the night. For three nights they became consistent at about 10 minutes apart and I prayed that these nights wouldn't continue for another week and a half! During these three nights before Bobby came, Derek and I went through the same routine: both showered and out on clothes we wouldn't mind rushing to the hospital in. Bag by the door. I was even crazy enough to do my makeup at night so I didn't look like a zombie during labor. (What was I thinking?! Ha!) By the night that we actually went into the hospital, of course we became more lax about our routine and were slightly less prepared...of course.
Shoot ahead to the morning of January 26th. I had personally prayed for this day to be his birthday for silly reasons. Our wedding anniversary is January 6, dating anniversary January 16...it just made sense! For days I had walked countless laps around malls (one of the laps, Derek surprised bought me the most beautiful necklace with January's birthstone to give to me the day that Bobby was born. I love him for being so confident that January would be the month!) and parks, ate eggplant parmesan as much as possible, and prayed prayed prayed. Throughout the night of the 25th I had such intense contractions that I vowed to go to labor and delivery in the morning just to make sure Robert was okay. 7 am, the contractions for 4 minutes apart anyway so we calmly headed down to St. joseph hospital. Apparently I was too calm to be admitted. They checked Robert and his heartbeat was nice and strong, my pain was only a "3-4" so I was sent on my miserable waddling way with my consistent contractions told to come back when they were "more intense." Thanks for the specifics. The rest if the day was spent doing more of the usual things to help labor along. Funny story, the day before I had an extreme urge to clean all the floors. I mean, down on hands and knees with magic erasers scrubbing. Reading up on signs of imminent labor apparently that's a thing. Cracks me up.
January 26th, we go to bed early expecting another restless night and wondering hoe bad the pain had to get before I could go back. 9 pm in bed and the Lord answers my question: water breaks! Skipping some of the gross and embarrassing moments that followed, we were in the car and I remember Derek asking how fast I wanted him to go. Not sure what I said but he thinks it was like something out of the movies where the woman's voice goes two octaves lower and says "JUST DRIVE". That sounds like me. Getting into the hospital through the emergency room was a hoot. Valet guys racing to the car with a wheelchair, speeding me past all of the poor souls with sliced fingers and other emergencies gawking at me (I must have looked pretty crazed).
Once up to labor and delivery, I dont remember too much about the admission process. I know that it did not go as calmly as it did that morning. I guess that was the pain intensity they were waiting to see. Good to know for next time. Once my water broke, pain was at an 8-9. I don't think the nurse believed this when she was tracking my first contractions, but later she understood why. I was told that Contractions would not be that bad because there would be a definite start,rise, and fall. I call bologne. At least for mine. One right after the next with a breath in between, the nurse tried to convince me to labor on the balance ball, and I am not ashamed to admit I said "how about we do drugs now instead" Good thing too, if we had done it her way, it would have been too late for an epidural.
Took what seemed like an eternity to get bloodwork and IV done to get the epidural and once it was in, it
Nurse comes back in an hour, I have gone from being dilated 1 1/2 to 9 (oh, that's why the contractions were so intense!) and she told me she would go call and wake up Dr. Fiorentino and come back so I could start pushing. Here, I thought that all of our family members could get some sleep and come in the morning...nope. Derek started making calls so everyone could get down to the hospital.
The next hour of pushing was BY FAR my favorite part of labor. The pain was not bad thanks to Mr. Anathesiologist and I knew I would finally get to hold my baby boy soon. Derek again was my perfect coach and I focused on him and his instructions to push through contractions. I could see him getting really excited and I knew that he was seeing our son for the first time. I think if it were up to him I would have never stopped pushing so that he could get to him faster! On the last push, our awesome doc pulls Derek next to him and tells him that he will be delivering his son (whoops, that is why the nurse told Derek to glove up- he didn't). As Robert came out Derek and the dr. saw the umbilical cord looped twice around Robert's neck. This was my BIGGEST fear. Knowing that, they both used their calmest voices saying "we're just going to take this...and do this...there all done". And out at 3:44 am was our 7 lb 12 oz 20 inch long boy! Derek will never admit this but if you are reading this someday Bobby, your father cried when he first held you/caught you. We both did. It was the most incredible experience that can't be explained in words, only felt. The nurse immediately put you on my chest, skin to skin where we stayed for an hour. Hate to break it to ya kiddo, first thing you did besides cry: you pooped on me. But you also stopped crying the minute they put you on me and that instantaneous bond is something I will never forget.
We didn't sleep for the next night and day because we were too busy watching you sleep.
We love you Robert James.
I'll love you forever. I'll like you for always. As long as I'm living, my baby you'll be.