My due date was Wednesday, May 24. Early on, we told Emsy that she needed to wait until May 23rd so she’d be a Gemini like Daddy. The minute I was far enough along to safely deliver at the birth center, I decided a Taurus baby would be just peachy, so she could just hurry her little butt out of there. I decided sex would be a good idea again after having no desire throughout the pregnancy, so we heaved the giant belly into the air and made acrobatic love. At 38 weeks or so I started dilating, and could feel it in my cervix very localized, so I wasn’t surprised when the midwife that week told me I was a fingertip dilated and 50% effaced. I kept cramping through the next week and at that next visit… still a fingertip. I had started getting calls asking when the baby was coming, and was really annoyed by them, because I was miserably heavy and achy and desperate to go into labor.
At my 40 week visit on Friday, still a fingertip, and Laurie suggested I get some Evening Primrose Oil and Raspberry Leaf Tea. We went immediately to the Health Food store and I took the maximum dose I could of the oil, and chugged the tea by the gallon. I was so bored and cranky it was terrible, and I was bloated like crazy, and my back was on strike.
Sunday night we go to Bu’s Mom & Dad’s for dinner, and they’d made a huge Appalachian comfort food meal. Bu tries to get me to eat some Turkey, since I’d given into poultry cravings a couple of times in my first trimester, but we were over that. I have gravy though. There’s batter bread and sweet potato casserole, and I can’t stop eating. I eat until I should be sick. Then I have another piece of bread. I amazed there is suddenly room in my belly for food. We hang out a little while in the kitchen discussing my stubborn cervix, how adorable the cradle is all empty and waiting, breastfeeding stories, etc. We finally go home and just hang around the house.
We are both up a little later than usual, and I go up to our bedroom to watch Buffy DVD’s. Bu goes downstairs to the office to mess around on the computer.I pop in the DVD (Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season 6, but I don’t remember which episode) at 5 til midnight, lie down on the bed and get extremely comfortable and relaxed, then feel the weirdest tiny little pop. Immediately my brain races: That was my water. Ohmygoddess that was my water. Go to the toilet. It is going to gush everywhere in just a second. My water broke, I’m going to be in labor. Contractions any second. Mom’s labor started with her water breaking, I knew mine would break early too. I make it to the toilet, and the whoosh comes. I feel very giddy, and yell down at Bu, “Come here! My water just broke!” He asks was I serious, well yes, and we talk about what to pack up (I’d packed the bare necessities but we had no DVD’s, music, snacks for the birth center) and when to call the midwife and his parents and my aunt.
Right after this I notice that there is a green tinge to the waters, and slightly powdery looking stuff in the toilet. I know right away that I’m not going to the birth center and will have to deliver at the hospital. My high doesn’t quite crash, but I’m in a sort of suspended, distant emotional state at that point. We call and have Laurie paged, and she calls right back from the hospital. I tell her about the meconium, and she tries to ascertain the color and thickness from my description- the color of green tea but thicker but not soup thick. Inexplicably, I lie about the powdery dark stuff, thinking I am not sure if it was just a dirty toilet- I know it isn’t but I’m hanging onto a thread of hope I can still go to the birth center. We can’t agree whether it was too thick, and if I should be admitted to the hospital. She says to wait one hour, sit on white pads or towels, and report back on the color. I call Debi, our doula, to tell her what was going on. She seems confused by Laurie’s advice, or just sleepy, but we tell her we’ll call when things got further along.
I sit on a couple of towels, totally grossed out by the squishy gushes that keep coming, and we call everyone to tell them what was up. We say we’ll prepare for the birth center or the hospital, and keep everyone posted. After one hour, we call Laurie back. I report pretty much the same as before. She suggests we meet at the birth center and she’ll check it, and if it was thick meconium we’d go to back to the hospital. The hospital is only 10 minutes from our house, and the birth center is 30. So I tell her we can come to the hospital, if it was easier for her. Bu shakes his head “no” as I am on the phone, not knowing I am talking to her about just meeting to check on things. Seeing his concern about not going to the birth center is great, and makes me feel so secure and glad I have him as a partner in this. The midwife says they’d want to admit me if they knew I was in labor, so to just go to triage and tell them she is going to check to see if my amniotic fluid is leaking.