- My water broke around 4:45pm outside of Giant while I was waiting for Dre to pull the car up. It had been a week since I'd had any sort of consistent contractions when my water broke--and I still didn't have any for five hours.
- While waiting on contractions we went to Home Depot for our Christmas tree. We did laps there with my sister until the store was closing hoping for contractions but nothing. We came home and Dre and the Christmas Angel (Caleb) put lights on the tree.
- 540 lights and an hour and a half later I was definitely in labor and having contractions hard enough to need Dre's help tracking them and applying counter pressure to my hips.
- We left for the hospital a little before 1:45am. I was admitted and checked in at only 3 centimeters--which definitely disappointed me since I was 1 cm at my last appointment. The contractions had been so close together and so consistent for almost 3 hours that I was sure I'd have made more progress than that by the time we got to the hospital. The midwife went to go lay down and Dre and Jan tried to encourage me that I hadn't come to the hospital for nothing and that no matter what there was going to be a baby soon.
- Time is pretty much a blur from then on. I labored and Dre applied counter pressure to my hips. Jan encouraged me, encouraged Dre, got ice for me and coffee for Dre, and kept our families wonderfully updated. I really can't imagine at all going through all of that without both of them being there to support and help me. It proved more comforting than I could have anticipated to have my two best friends by my side.
- Just before 3am things the midwife checked my progress and I was 7 centimeters. Whew! Progress. The news was encouraging because the contractions hadn't felt significantly more intense than the ones at home (though they were painful) but they were exhausting and I was about ready to be done. The news was also rather intimidating because hearing I was at 7 cm and feeling my body changing a bit meant I was nearing the all consuming "transition" stage and I wasn't sure I could bear more. But there wasn't much of an option. ;-) Thanks to water therapy (ie. "the tub"), Dre almost breaking his back trying to apply counter pressure to both my hips for every contraction, Jan encouraging us and helping communicate with the nurses and midwife where we were at and keeping Dre awake and encouraged, time continued to march on. Eventually Jan and Dre were pretty sure I was getting to the other side of transition and I was starting to tell them I thought I wanted to push (or had to--I don't think I really 'wanted' to at all).
- At about 7:30am the midwife checked me one last time, I was at 10 centimeters and ready to push. I then decided I couldn't push and pretty much wanted to no longer be conscious anymore. I was exhausted. I was afraid of contractions because I couldn't relax and couldn't function anymore with their intensity. The only option really was to push and so I did. Five pushes later I heard my dear husband crying (I knew he'd cry ;-)) and little Behr was here.
Having hip labor was nothing that I had expected. From the first contraction to the last one it increasingly felt like my body was going to split apart from the pain or my hips were going to pop out. Somehow I had no idea that hip labor existed. It really threw me to have nothing I had anticipated being comfortable or pain relieving to do much. The only thing that "helped" was Dre applying counter pressure. Behr is worth every moment of pain during labor and every bit of discomfort during pregnancy but whew! The memorable quotes for Kristen and my mom after delivery was me telling them that Behr was going to be an only child. Still not totally convinced our family will have more children but we'll see. ;-)Kristen made this video for me (?) of the night Behr was born; I've been rather "unemotional" since Behr was born--go figure--but this gets me pretty close to tears every time. I am so grateful to have her as a part of our "family" and home and her help with Behr to give my arms a break when he's fussy or help share the Behr snuggles. I can't wait to tell him someday how she waited all night for him to be born in the waiting room with Caylub passed out cold on Jan's pillow (another story). My mom used to tell me who was in the waiting room waiting for me and those are relationships that are still meaningful to my family and I love that and pray ours with K.Snyd is the same.
I still am at a loss for words for how to describe how much having a baby and watching my husband with that baby has made me fall in love with him more and more. I have never been as cared for and helped as much as I have by Dre in the last almost twelve months. While he (as predicted) sleeps through Behr's wakings in the night if I need him he's quick to get up and help me with whatever Behr or I need. I love that Behr responds to his snores and his voice more than almost any other sound around. I love how little Behr looks like in his dada's arms and can't wait to watch their relationship grow. -- Dre was amazing while I was in labor. If for no other reason taking birthing classes was well worth it for how it prepared him to anticipate and understand what was happening and how to help or just wait on things. He was patient, attentive, and "present" the entire time. He made the perfect "coach." :-) He was up all night with me and yet helped with the baby and never complained of his less than comfortable sleeping arrangement while we were a the hospital.
And so, in a somewhat abbreviated form, that is how we became a family of three on December 6th. Our lives were changed forever with little Behr's arrival. Maybe someday he'll have a sibling. We'll see. ;-)