“Ricky, this is it.”
When I think about a woman going into labor, I immediately think of the I Love Lucy episode when Ricky, Fred, and Ethel carefully rehearse what they would do when Lucy goes into labor. When Lucy announces that labor has started, hilarious pandemonium ensues! At one point, Lucy even gets left behind in the apartment when they all run out the door in a frantic rush to get to the hospital.
Unfortunately, even with the same careful planning, I won’t have the I Love Lucy experience. Baby is now 6 days late and there are no signs of her wanting to enter the world on her own. Because of this, and the extra amniotic fluid (a condition known as polyhydramnios), baby is getting evicted from the womb by means of induction.
I have a feeling it’s going to be a long day. Hopefully, I’ll be a father by day’s end. But at this point, I’m a believer that anything is possible and I’m ready to hang out for the long run.
We started our day at 3:30 am, getting our last-minute things packed and loaded up into the car. My wife ate half of a Vietnamese Banh Mi sandwich for breakfast and then we got on our way.
We arrived at the emergency room of the hospital around 5:00 am. An employee wheeled her up to the labor and delivery floor, where we checked in. Being an employee of the hospital herself, my wife will get a private recovery room for free, which is a really nice perk.
At 6:00 am, she was put into a room and placed on an IV. At 6:30 am the nurse placed a dose of Cytotec into her cervix. Cytotec is a drug used to ripen the cervix to help with effacement to prepare for delivery.
I tried to take a short nap on the convertible couch/bed in the room, but kept getting woken by various people checking in. The OB came by to see how things were going, a team at the children’s hospital came by to get consent signatures for the donation of cord blood, and the nurse was in and out to check on the status of mom and baby.
The Cytotec seemed to kick-start labor. My wife started to have some very light regular contractions. Around 10:30 am, while writing this post, the nurse checked to see if the cervix was starting to efface and inadvertently broke the bag of water. All of the extra amniotic fluid my wife was carrying around came gushing out! I think I’m really glad it happened in a controlled environment. I don’t think the plastic I put under the bed sheets would have been able to contain the water if it happened at home.