At 1:18am I woke up with a dull pain low in my belly. I grabbed my phone from the nightstand and typed "1:18" into my notepad. Then 1:25, 1:32, 1:39, 1:50, 1:53, 1:58, 2:02, 2:07, 2:10, 2:12, 2:14, 2:16. Each one was more painful but I was determined to labor at home for as long as possible despite my husband's repeated attempts to get me to go to the hospital. I took a shower, blow dried my hair, and got dressed. All the while stopping every few minutes with the most crippling pain I'd ever felt. Then around 3:15am Nathan all but demanded that we head to the maternity ward. By the time we arrived just before 4am the contractions were so intense that I held on to his waist and screamed into his belly through each one. He ran in to find the nearest available wheel chair and we burst through the doors like a scene out of a movie. They put me straight into a gown and when the nurse checked me I almost couldn't believe my ears when she said I was seven centimeters, was experiencing what they call "transition"(in short, the most intense part of labor), and the baby would be here soon, very soon.
That's when I realized, was it too late for an epidural? I asked the nurse and she said yes, that I would never be able to sit still long enough. Oh no, I thought to myself, I'm about to experience natural childbirth! I was terrified. I looked at the nurse and as calmly as possible I swore to her that I wouldn't move a muscle, just please, PLEASE get me an epidural. They wheeled me in to the delivery room and within minutes the Anesthesiologist arrived and despite having two horrific contraction during the process, I managed to stay still. The pain began to subside and the nurses said we should try and get some rest and left the room, but ten minutes later they were back. The monitors showed that my contractions were on top of each other so they checked me one last time and sure enough, it was go time. The doctor rushed in, introduced herself and told me to get ready for a quick delivery. I pushed three times and just like that, at 5:42am, less than two hours after arriving at the hospital, Jonah James was born. We were in complete shock. I was in labor for 23 hours with Charlie, how could we have gone from start to finish in just four and a half hours? I can't count the number of times we looked at each other that morning in total disbelief. We were now the parents of TWO.
Jonah is just over five months old now. A bit colicky the first three months but now he's all smiles. A not so great sleeper but being a second time mom, I know it won't last forever (although, sometimes at 3am, I start to think it might). It's overwhelming but full of moments where I'm overcome with gratitude and love. I can hardly remember life before Jonah. Now it's JUST THE FOUR OF US.
Jonah, 1 week.
Jonah, 4 months.