I decided to finish my sandwich before we left for the hospital because all the books say to eat before you leave because you won't get to eat once you get to the hospital! (In this case, bad idea...) We then found the girl who prayed over us on our way out and thanked her again and told her how much it meant to us.
On the way to the car in the parking lot I kept having contractions and had to stop and bend over for each one. It was an odd feeling because I was very aware of all the people around us and trying to appear normal but I was feeling anything but! Sheesh...a people-pleaser even in labor!!
When we got to the car I had another contraction and squatted down between our car and the one next to us. So painful! When I got up, I noticed I felt wet and was concerned there was more bleeding. But as we drove to the hospital fifteen minutes away, I checked and realized my water had broken!! Everything was happening fast and we were both feeling the craziness of it all. I was a week early yet things were moving right along! I don't remember a lot of the drive but I do remember calling my sister to let her know and for some reassurance during contractions since she'd been through this three times! I think I even started crying when I told her how much it hurt.
We got to the hospital and P. was very smooth and calm as he found the correct parking garage (it's a huge hospital and there are five!). We hadn't done a hospital tour so we weren't even quite sure where to go. I had another painful contraction and this one had me bending over in the corridor where I started crying from the pain. P. tells me this was the moment when he started to worry and get scared from seeing me in so much pain. But God continued to provide for us as a hospital staff member saw us and got a wheelchair and took us where we needed to go. She was a friendly African-American woman and said how that morning she had asked Jesus for "good things to happen" and this was going to be one of them (me having the baby!). So sweet. Another staff member saw my husband carrying his Bible (the one thing he grabbed in the car...love that man) and she said something about how we would be fine because God was with us.
We finally got to the unit but they were very busy and I was put in triage. Several nurses and a nurse practitioner came in for an assessment but were all very casual about things. I was at a 1 or 2 when they checked me so I'd imagine they thought I was a first time delivery and it would be a long time (an average first-time labor is around 12 hours). When I went to the bathroom to give them a sample, I noticed something terrifying to me. My water wasn't clear. I knew something was wrong.
When the nurse was in, I told her my fear-- I think there's meconium in my water.
She shrugged a bit and said she didn't think so but they'd run a test. I was frustrated and showed her my pad.
"Oh my," she said. "Yep. That's meconium."
There were three things I feared most for my delivery-- that the baby's heart would drop with contractions, that the cord would be around her neck, and that there would be meconium in the water.
All three things happened.
To be continued...