1am: I had wanted to try to stay home until near daybreak, if possible. While the contractions aren’t much closer together, they are stronger. The TENS unit is back in operation and now I’m beginning to feel the end of its relief. It has helped for several hours now, so I can’t complain. I’m sure the effects will last long enough to get to the hospital. If only Mom and Dad were here by now. We’re waiting for them. I pass the time by finishing the wrapping of the gifts from the baby to Jacob and vise versa. We’ve thrown four bags of “stuff” together. I feel silly preparing, like this were a vacation, but I want Jacob to stay with us as long as we’re there. If this turns into a cesarean for any reason that could be three nights. So, we’re prepared.
1:15am: Mom and Dad arrive safely! I feel much better now. Poor Dad, knowing that I didn’t want an audience, is sitting in the car at the top of the driveway. He had no idea that I was ready to go or I’m sure he’d have come in. He’s decided to accompany us all to the hospital, but assures me that he’ll wait downstairs out of the maternity ward and out of earshot. We carry a sleeping Jacob through the cold night to the car waiting at the top of the hill. He wakes long enough to realize that his Grammy and Pa are here and that we’re on our way to meet our baby.
2am: We arrive. Dad leaves us at the door only to be shown upstairs by hospital personnel a few minutes later (but he waits in the waiting room at the other end of the maternity ward). Mom, Jacob, Rob and I head up to meet the midwife. I am now to the point of not being able to move at all when a contraction hits, so I must have stopped a dozen times in the short walk. The delivery suite is in full swing. Five rooms and four are full. One mother just gave birth and another is pushing. I enter and take the last open room and another mom-to-be is coming in just as I settle in. They’ve summoned the doctor on call as well as the midwife. I’m sure hoping that Rachel is available to assist us. I check in at just 4cm and a bit more effaced. Only four? My water hasn’t broken. Rachel suggests that she break it and that I’ll go “quickly” once the head is resting directly on my cervix. What is “quickly” anyway? Five minutes? Five hours? If someone could answer that I’d probably have consented. Since I wanted Jacob to be there as long as possible, and I knew I needed to remain comfortable if that were to happen, I decided I would have an epidural. Not yet though. First I rested a bit still using the TENS unit.