When I had my first child, I planned on getting an epidural but the baby came so quick that there was no time. At 4 am, my husband left for work and I got up and cleaned the kitchen and bathroom and then decided to hop in the shower. Right when I stepped into the shower my water broke. At first I thought I had just pee’d my pants (a common activity in late pregnancy) but the liquid was clear and it was only a few days from my daughter’s due date so I knew it was time.
I was surprisingly calm considering it was my first child. I had no idea what to expect or the amount of pain I might feel. I called my husband and he was more panicked than I was. He immediately raced home but unfortunately he had already traveled about 2 hours away from our home so I knew it would be a while before he got back. Still, I did not panic.
I called my mom and sister in case my husband didn’t make it back in time. My mom and sister were excited and kept rushing me over the phone to get to the hospital but I had read so many stories about women getting to the hospital and having to lay there for hours. I preferred to stay at home for as long as possible.
Instead, I hopped back in the shower and washed, fixed my hair, made myself a small meal and drank a Gatorade. My husband finally arrived home and told me he had gotten a speeding ticket which normally would have made me angry but I understood he was excited to be a new dad as I was excited to be a new mother.
We met my sister, my mother and my grandmother at the hospital. My grandmother had had four children but my daughter’s birth would be the first she had ever witnessed or been awake for. She had her babies during the days of “twilight sleep” where drugging all women was the normal protocol. So it was truly exciting for her to be there.
I arrived at the hospital around 7 am. I felt some pain but not much until about 9:30am and my daughter came out at 10:18am. I guess you could say I got lucky as I wasn’t in painful labor for very long. I had walked 3 miles every day up until my daughter arrived so I feel like that had something to do with it.
To be honest, I can’t remember the pain all that well. I do remember the episiotomy which made my sister’s eyes roll into the back of her head. She was holding my leg and looked like she was going to collapse. The look on her face scared me more than anything. She regained her stance quickly and was able to witness the birth of my child.
In the midst of all of the chaos, people I didn’t know kept wandering into my room by accident which was slightly annoying. I wish there had been some sort of lock on the door or someone monitoring visitors better because a whole bunch of strangers got a peak at me crowning.
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