They were due May 7th, but Heidi’s water broke one week early. Heidi called Jeff at work to let him know that it was time. At first, he wasn’t sure it could be really time to go. But they went in. Heidi was only dilated to 1 cm and leaking water. She went through 22 hours of labor that started at 4 in the afternoon.
Jeff clarified that a few weeks earlier, they had experienced a few “false alarms”, so when they talked with the doctor, they checked to make sure that this was the real thing. The doctor assured them it was time, but not an emergency. So Jeff told people at work, and went home to finish up final touches on packing and then go to the hospital.
Heidi continues that the baby had descended before the water broke. She also couldn’t have medications like an epidural because they didn’t want to suppress her labor. She was still at 1 cm, and stayed there for 10 hours. They tried some different medications and she finally moved to 4 cm. She couldn’t have an epidural until she was dilated more than 6 cm. When they finally got there, she got the epidural, and Jeff actually fainted at that time.
Heidi eventually got to 10 cm. A couple of procedures she wanted to avoid were having an episiotomy or a c-section. In her discussions prior, she had made an agreement on that. But knowing that the doctor might go ahead with those procedures, she was glad the interpreter knew her preferences. During actual labor, she was so affected by the medications she wasn’t able to express herself clearly, but the interpreter played the role of advocate in reminding the doctor about those prior agreements.
When it was the time of the actual birth, she was struggling because her pelvis was too small. She went through a 2 hour struggle, and the doctor finally decided they needed to go with a c-section. But before that, they tried an episiotomy and were able to deliver. In hindsight, Heidi wondered about having gone with the episiotomy earlier, but was glad that she tried without giving up right away. (Even if she failed to prevent that procedure.) She was glad that the episiotomy worked and she was able to avoid the c-section. In addition, she was thrilled to have a son with red hair. The 22 hours was worth it for a beautiful son…to which Jeff concurs.