Well, 24 hours from now I will be arriving at the Birthing Center, getting ready for who knows what. I'm not gonna lie--I'm extremely nervous, just for the fact that I have NO idea what to expect. It could all go a million different ways. What I want to have happen (besides automatically going into labor all on my own right when I arrive...) is I get right in, they start me, and right away my body knows what to do and I have a somewhat quick labor and smooth delivery--without an epidural.
BUT this is life. And if we all know one lesson of life it's that life almost never turns out the way you want. Even though my OB told me the schedule that day is pretty free and clear, I could go in and find that they are too full to induce me and they might send me home (my OB gave me a lot of different scenarios, just so that I'm seeing it realistically and can be prepared for anything). Or I could go in for my scheduled induction at nine a.m. and end up waiting around until four in the afternoon before they even have a place for me. Or they could start me and my body might not respond to the pitocin and I might be sitting there hooked up to it for twenty-four hours before anything happens. And if that's the case (and I don't have the baby until Friday), that just means one more night in the hospital and one more night that someone has to watch our kids.
And then there's the other million things that can go not as expected--the things that can happen whether you're induced or go into labor naturally. OR, OR, OR....
But I think out of all of it, the thing I'm dreading the most is the epidural. After talking to so many people who have shared their stories with me of when they were induced, it just seems like it might be somewhat unavoidable. Like I've said before, I don't think an epidural is evil or bad or anything like that, and I have an open enough mind to accept the fact that I just might need one--and that's okay.
But when I compare my two previous labor experiences--one with it and one without it--it's just not even a competition. Hands down, my experience without it was SO much better, and I would love to have that repeated. With the epidural it lengthened my labor, I had horrible side effects afterward (an allergic reaction of sorts), I felt out of control not being able to feel anything down there, Dave had to hold my legs because they were like Jell-o...etc. There were just so many reasons that make me, personally, shy away from it.
When I did it naturally, everything went quickly and effectively. I loved that I felt in control of my body and could actually feel what was happening, thus allowing me to work WITH my body to deliver the baby. I loved that I felt normal right after the baby was born. I loved that I could get up and pee on my own right afterward, and even walk to my own recovery room. I loved that Josh was alert and breastfed right away (which, I know, might not have to do with it, but still...). And, honestly, I simply loved the euphoria of doing it without medication. The high it provided and the accomplishment I felt was worth it all, and provided something better than pain relief for me.
So do I pray and hope that I can do it that way again? DEFINITELY. And I will still do all I can to try it. But I also know that being induced is completely different than going into labor naturally. When it happens naturally, your body gradually works its way up to the intense, painful contractions (not to mention you can be at home, comfortable, when this is happening). But when you're induced, it starts right of the bat with the intense and painful ones (and from what I hear, seem to be even worse the normal). Plus, it might still take your body a while to actually be far enough along to do anything about it (the doc told me sometimes even twenty-four hours). Which means I could be sitting there, having those horrid, intense, painful contractions for hours on end. AND have to be sitting in a hospital bed, hooked up, while I'm waiting. No walking around, etc.
So I will do my best, but I will also be open to the fact that I just might not be able to handle it without some medication. I just pray for the best, in every aspect. And mostly, more than anything, I just pray that Luke is healthy. I know everything will be fine at the end, no matter the road we had to take to get there, but I'd be lying if I said thinking about the road didn't scare me or stress me out.
I also have to mention how grateful I am to the wonderful people in Bagdad for all their support. We have had so many people in our ward who have offered their help, and that couldn't mean more to us. Not having family here to help this time has been a big stress factor on us (and makes us a little sad), but with all the help from the ward family, that stress has lessened a great deal. I really don't know what we would do without you guys. Tara, for taking our kids the first day and night. Paul and Beth for taking them the second day and night (and offering to watch them even longer if needs be). And Lydia for being the original one to watch them and now has to deal with her own sick family! For all the other offers to watch kids and all the offers for meals and cleaning our house! You guys are all truly angels in our lives and we thank you from the bottom of our hearts!
As an extra emotional, hormonal mom, who has never left her kids with anyone other than family overnight, leaving them with other people has been weighing on my mind a LOT. Worrying about them being happy and okay, worrying about them (mostly Josh) feeling out of their comfort zone because they aren't waking up at their own house, and then being miserable, worrying about this and that... But I trust you all and I know my kids will be fine! You guys have made my worrying and stress MUCH less! So thanks again!
Okay, I'm done with my rant. *Deep breath*
Wish us luck!