It was a Thursday and my last day at work before my leave. I planned to work from home the following week and try to relax before my scheduled induction the following Sat. My mom was flying in that week as well to be there for the birth and help me afterword. So, as I sat to make my “padsicles” which I was told were a must for after giving birth I was surprised to feel like I was having a contraction. I wasn’t even really due for another 12 days. They thought the baby was measuring small though and didn’t want me going over 40 weeks which was the reason for the induction. I brushed it off and thought it was a Braxton-Hicks being that this was the first time I felt this way. When I woke up the next day I still didn’t feel well and felt like I was having “contractions”. I had a scheduled Dr’s appt. that day and told them what had been happening. They hooked me up to the monitors and said that I was not in labor. I headed home to FaceTime my Mom and tell her I wasn’t feeling well only to find out that my Dad was in the hospital for a hip replacement and they didn’t want to worry me. I also had painters at my house, was working, and my cousin needed an emergency tooth procedure and had dropped her two boys off with me. So, I just got through the day and thought it would pass. By that night I couldn’t sleep and woke my husband up to tell him that whatever was happening was happening every minute and I couldn’t take it anymore. We called the Dr. and she said I was probably fine but to go to the hospital to get checked out. Sure enough I was having contractions! I was only one cm dilated though so she said I could stay and see what happened or go home. I didn’t know when to come back though as my contractions were now every few minutes apart. She told me that when I no longer seemed myself and able to function/talk between contractions that I should come back. It was now about 8AM and I called my Mom to tell her. She was on the way to the hospital but turned around to go straight to the airport and said “Don’t have that baby until I get there!” FYI I now live in Colorado and she lives in NJ. The nurse then told me to keep hydrated and rest and offered me a sleeping pill. I would have to take it at the hospital though and I had too much to do I didn’t have time to sleep! So, we left the hospital and headed to Target of course! I needed some nursing tops and other odds and ends. I then wandered down the lamp isle because even while in labor Target had sucked me into buying things I didn’t need. As my husband followed me around he put his foot down after several contractions and said “we need to go home and rest this is ridiculous you can’t have this baby in Target!” We headed home and I took a little nap. The contractions had eased up a bit at this point so I cleaned the house, packed my bag, took a walk to the mailbox to send a few things. I don’t remember much after that until it was dark and the contractions were much worse again. My husband went to sleep and I paced around the living room drinking coconut water and eating animal crackers. At 10:30pm my Mom had finally arrived and couldn’t believe I hadn’t gone to the hospital, apparently I looked like I was in rough shape. I could still talk between contractions and wanted to stay home as long as possible. For the next few hours I took a shower, got ready, and a little after midnight woke my husband up and told him I wasn’t myself anymore and he needed to call the hospital. We got in the car and drove down the road where I proceeded to try and tell him I saw a bunch of deer in the road but I couldn’t get the words out and being that he was so nervous he must not have seen them until right before hitting about 6 deer. He slammed on the breaks! My handful of animal crackers flew everywhere which I was not pleased about. When I got to the hospital they got me to the room and told me I was 8 cm dilated and why didn’t I come sooner. I told them I was still able to function between contractions. The nurse told me she was going to tell the other nurse I obviously had a higher pain tolerance than she probably thought I did and it wouldn’t be long now. However, what they didn’t tell me was that because I had tested positive for that group strep B which I’m still not sure what it was. They wouldn’t break my water to help me along until they had given me two rounds of antibiotics through the IV. I still wish my husband would have told me that so I could have threatened people into breaking my water and making it go faster but after seeing the device they use to do that I’m happy they didn’t. Them trying to get the IV into my vein and then giving me the antibiotics was the worse part of the whole night. They couldn’t find a vein and then every time I moved it caught on something and hurt like hell. Unfortunately, my labor really slowed at this point although the contractions continued to come very minute. I had wanted to give birth naturally without medication and had told me husband that unless I threatened his life not to let me get anything. Hours later I was so tired from not being able to sleep that I told him I couldn’t do it anymore and needed something. He told me no and I apparently said ok. My cousin told me I asked a few more times but they just kept telling me no because I was so close it wouldn’t be much longer, I don’t remember this, I just remember someone doing imitations of my funny Uncle, weird spa music playing, people trying to prop me up on different birthing balls, being freezing, someone putting different oils under my nose to help me, and hoping I would pass out so I didn’t have to do it it anymore. It was around Halloween so I had brought candy for the staff and remember being very concerned that everyone got their candy. As if they weren’t going to help me get this baby out unless I had given them a treat! I had read something that said to think of each contraction as a wave that you’re diving under so that was what I thought of each time. I kept having to pee and the nurse kept asking me if it was just pee which I thought was so strange at the time and even though I couldn’t say anything I kept thinking yeah lady stop asking me if I just have to pee what do you care! I soon realized that having to push feels like to are going to poop and she didn’t want me having my baby in the toilet. As I came out of the bathroom my water broke and I knew she was coming! I then said my water broke to which everyone replied “yeah we see that”. Then the nurse kept telling me not to push until the Dr arrived. She had obviously never given birth because I was not the one controlling what was happening at this point! Another thing I read was to take your mind off of pushing, stick out your index finger and pretend your are blowing out a candle. As I was hunched over the bed I stuck out my finger and started blowing. Everyone had clearly thought I lost it and it didn’t work. Now 8 hours after I had arrived the sun was up and I was ready to push. You know what they shouldn’t do, wait to teach you how to push when your starting to push. I just closed my eyes and screamed as loud as I could. That didn’t work so she explained it again and I got the hang of it. I was extremely lucky that I only pushed for maybe 15 minutes because that part really sucks! After over 48 hours at 7:07AM Sunday morning my baby girl arrived. The Dr. had to tell me to open my eyes to look at her and say Happy Birthday! I was so traumatized I didn’t even realize it was over. At this point I just kept saying “I did it!” I must have said it a million times because I couldn’t believe it was over. Then she told me to get ready to deliver the placenta. I was pissed, I didn’t want to, I had already given birth to a baby today! I asked her if it was going to hurt and she responded “not more than the baby you just had”. We had a rough few days after that when Lilah thankfully narrowly avoided having to go to the NICU and dealing with other post birth drama. My now 2 year old little girl is my best friend and the greatest gift. As I now prepare to give birth again to a baby boy next month, writing this is giving me PTSD. I hope to have another all natural birth because for me personally it was an amazing experience but I am much more nervous this time…I know too much! I’m so glad everything happened the way it did though and I know so much more about my body and how to read the signs it’s giving me. Trust yourself and your body, it was made to do this!