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Ann-Jennifer and Zoe
Vaginal delivery, epidural, induced delivery via cervix softener

It was four days before Zoe's due date when I went in for my weekly doctor's check-up. As my doctor examined me to check my dilation, she informed me I was still only 1 cm. This frustrated me as I was 2 cm. a month before my due date with my first daughter. At my previous appointment, my doctor discussed scheduling an induction three days before my actual due date. So when she told me the news of my still being only 1 cm. at this visit, I thought for sure, she'd change her mind about going through with the induction. But she had a different plan in mind. She wanted me to check into the hospital that evening at 6:30 to go in and have my cervix softened. So I rushed home in a frenzy. I found my husband, 2 1/2 year-old-daughter, Juliet, and my mother-in-law anxiously awaiting the news of my current status. They were rather shocked when I told them we were going in that night.

My husband, Adam, and I arrived at the hospital as scheduled. We got settled into our room by 7 pm and by 7:30 pm my nurse, Brandi, had implanted this softener. The downside to the whole situation was that I had to lay on my side for two hours for it to take effect. While I was watching every minute pass, my husband went down to the local video rental store to rent some movies for what we thought would be a quite and uneventful night. Our nurse returned at about 10 pm and removed the softener. We began watching one of the movies, and it was about 12:30 am when I began feeling more uncomfortable. By 1:30 am, I had reached for Adam's hand and was beginning to have to breathe through what was rapidly becoming regular contractions. At the point where I began squeezing his hand harder and harder, he would ask in a carefree tone if I was alright. The contractions began to get so uncomfortable I told him to call for our nurse. She arrived and checked my dilation. She also hooked me back up to the fetal monitor. Sure enough I was in labor! I was so excited. I was 3 centimeters dilated too.

Since I had read how quickly labor moves with subsequent deliveries, I decided to have an epidural at this time. I was getting very uncomfortable and have a low threshold for pain. Within 5 minutes after the epidural was placed, I was joking with Adam and looking forward to finally meeting our little girl. By 2:55 am I was 7 centimeters, 90% effaced. We couldn't believe how fast it was actually moving. And five minutes later, I was complete and ready to push. Only there was only one problem--my doctor wasn't there yet! At 2:50 am, my doctor was 20 minutes away. So I had to blow through all my contractions for 45 minutes! My doctor no more then slipped into a gown and threw on some gloves and our baby girl was out in three pushes! I didn't need an episiotomy and didn't even have any tearing.

Zoe Elexis was born at 3:45 am, July 21, 1999. She weighed 7 pounds even and was 19 inches long. It was so wonderful to add another beautiful little girl to our family.


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