For those of you who like to know the birth story ...
By Halloween night, I had been experiencing early labor sporadically for twelve days, even though my "official" due date wasn't until November 5th. I was tired of the anticipation and the Braxton-Hicks. That evening, we went to a fantastic first birthday party for our friends' daughter. Leila must have eaten too much candy, because on the way home she threw up, and continued to throw up randomly for the next 3 - 4 hours. Thankfully, she fell asleep around midnight and didn't wake up again.
As Tony and I were heading to bed, I mentioned that my groin and lower abdomen muscles had been really hurting throughout the day, and wondered out loud how long I'd have to put up with it. Just another early labor symptom on top of all the other symptoms I already had, I figured.
At 5:30 am, I woke up to use the bathroom. On the way back to bed, I had an extremely strong contraction, but chalked it up to early labor and laid back down. I continued to have contractions until Tony woke up for work at 6:30 am. I mentioned the contractions but said that he could go ahead and get ready for work. By the time he was out of the shower, I asked him to stay home for a couple of hours so that I could decide whether this was true labor. By 7:00 am, I was calling my sister to ask her to come stay with the twins while we went to the hospital.
We got to the hospital at about 8:00 am. My contractions were three minutes apart and I was dilated to 6 centimeters, so at 8:50 am I was officially admitted. We were taken to our labor and delivery room, where I almost immediately received an epidural. (I considered doing natural labor since everything was moving so quickly, but Tony and I decided together that an epidural was the best decision for us, and in hindsight, I still think it was the best decision.) As soon as the epidural had been administered, the doctor came in, checked me, and announced that I had reached 10 centimeters -- it was time to start pushing! So, about four hours after the first contraction, and an hour after being admitted to the hospital, with my parents and another sister in the waiting room, we were having our baby.
I want to pause here and mention how different a single, vaginal birth is from a multiple birth that starts with a vaginal delivery and ends with a c-section. I mean, obviously, that sentence speaks for itself, but I was truly shocked when there was only one nurse in the room with Tony and I for 99% of the birth. She was fantastic, but I kept looking around, thinking, aren't there supposed to be more people here? It was actually quite peaceful.
Now, five days later, I feel so blessed to have had a healthy, full-term pregnancy with an uncomplicated delivery. And even more blessed when I look at my three beautiful daughters and the man that I'm raising a family with. Now, if only I was getting a little more sleep ... :)