I had had 4 random days (within 2 weeks) of contractions after I started losing my plug (starting Wednesday June 6th.) I didnt lose my plug with Atlas until the morning of the day I went into labor (and lost it all at once) and since Atlas' birth was so fast I immediately went on high alert with Aria and summoned my first time mom instincts that I had skipped the first time around.... EACH time I started having contractions.
*Contractions - Saturday June 9th what might have been 37 weeks and 3/4 days [Atlas' bake timer], but according to US it was still 36 weeks
*Contractions - Sunday June 10th
Then (June 14th) Bob went out of town to buy a house in PA and Mom came into town and watched Atlas for me so I could go out for my birthday (June 15th) (OOT). After I dropped Bob off at the airport, I headed to Kelli's and she checked me. I was 2 cm and 40% effaced. That made me a little nervous to be closer, but I knew I would NOT give birth without Bob by my side. I didnt make this kid alone, I wasnt laboring and birthing without hi!
*Contractions - Sunday June 17th, Bob was back in town that morning
*Contractions - Thursday June 21st, this was the longest at 7 hours. I went to see Kelli Friday morning June 22nd to get her to check me...I was finally 4 cm and almost effaced, but she laughed at my eagerness.
Each of these times I had alerted my closest 51 friends, no really, we are a super duper tight mommy-clique and they were all promising to be AT my house if I went into labor and Bob was not there... and I know for a fact that 90% of them would have been. Heck, they would have shown up if given permission even if he were there. We are kinda birth freaks in that kind of way.
So on Friday, June 22nd I wasnt too concerned that this was finally for real. However we had dinner and I had trouble sitting... which was what happened when I was in labor with Atlas and didnt know it. After dinner we went for a long walk... walked twice around the subdivision, stopping to throw my head under the handle bar every 2 minutes and 30 seconds for a total of 35 seconds. While they were consistent, they were not the 5-1-1 you read about.
I alerted my midwife, Kelli Johnson, before we went walking that I was having contractions yet again. She said to shower and see what happened... but we went for a walk instead, I could shower later. I recall LOVING the heated spray on my lower back during labor with Atlas. I told Kelli the walk had regulated them.
I talked a few times to my girls on facebook about when they actually called their midwife to head over... some waited until the got in their birth tubs, others much earlier, I have fast labors and my midwife had her granddaughter at the bounce houses at Monkey Joe's... so if this was another false alert I was just a royally bad person.
I took a shower, shaved my legs, washed my hair, put on mascara (something I had vowed to do before Atlas' birth too, but alas missed) and got out of the shower to my birth team walking through the door and suddenly crumbling over to the floor again for a contraction.
Kelli checked me again, threw her head down and laughed. I got so frustrated - "WHAT?! Did I really not progress at all?!!?" "Oh no, you are at 8cm! You are just in too good of mood, no one is this happy at 8 cm :)"
10pm - Immediately Bob was calling mom - GET HERE NOW.
Chylain and Sharon were filling up the birthing tub, Kelli was doing whatever it was she does between knitting a baby hat and birthing a kid and Bob was getting Atlas to watch Cars.
11pm - I had Bob turn on Indigo Girls, he apparently also turned on the webcam to video. I later found out he had cameras set up around the room for quick access.
I OOOOpened and Kelli said, "Head is out." I felt and then did not stop pushing. It didn't even hurt after that point, it was pressure. She slid out. I flipped over. They say it was so fast that this next pic is from a cell phone and that they actually missed the "coming out party"but she was on my chest a split second later. I kinda wish I had let her swim around for a few seconds.
Bob - "Pick her up! Get her"
She was out.
It was 11:24pm.
Full Circle and Amanda Johnson.
I dont remember when we announced her name, but Aria was handed to Bob and I was helped to the shower. That hot water felt so good cleaning my body. I got out and Kelli checked me and needed to give me 2 little stitches. While lying in full glory my mom (ARRIVES) knocks and goes to open the door. I tell her I will be out in a moment. I was so happy Mom had made it, sad it was a little late, but she was here! Once I was cleaned up I went and cuddled with my family and fed Aria.
I took a few pictures with my birth team when they were done cleaning up and a few with my mom.
Atlas woke up at 6:30am and I brought him back to our bed to see his baby sister. Mom spent the first part of the day with us and then went home. ... and the babymoon began.
Oh, and unlike Atlas' birth... I was out jogging Friday morning :) I never stopped.
.. and then the Oxycitocin wore off, we moved 1000 miles away to Pittsburgh (from Orlando), and I struggled through a short bought of PPD. But around 8 weeks I recognized signs and am still able to fight it off.
Today we are golden. I truly feel like I have *survived*.