2 minute read

Holding newborn Zoe in the hospital

Life moves so much faster with two kids so I wanted to document Zoe’s birth story before the memory gets too hazy.

On Saturday October 28, 9 days before my due date, I woke up with slight cramping in my stomach. I would have ignored it except that 3 days earlier my doctor said she would be surprised if I was still pregnant in a week (4cm dilated and 70% effaced). With that in mind, I took a quick shower then called my doctor, who said to wait until the contraction pains “took my breath away” before coming in. I hung up and told Aaron it was time to go. I wasn’t going to miss my epidural window. We’ve all heard stories of how quickly labor  can progress with your second pregnancy. Most recently, my friend Jessica was in labor for 2 hours before her second little one was born. With her words resonating in my head, Aaron and I went into “labor mode”. We got to the hospital around 9:15.

The toughest part was figuring out what to do with Max. To makes this worse, he was in a particularly bad mood so getting him into the car was no easy task. Aaron and I had discussed several scenarios - if I went into labor at night, our neighbor Brian would come over and stay with Max (at the time, they had a 3.5 month old at home, so we really appreciated their offer to help!), if labor started at work, my co-worker Michelle would drive me to the hospital, but somehow we didn’t consider what would happen if I went into labor on the weekend. My sister (who lives in Northern VA) and mom (who lives in Chapel Hill, NC) immediately started driving up, but in the meantime we brought Max with us to the hospital. After I was checked in, Aaron dropped him off at his friend Carly’s house to play. Being able to do that was a huge help and we really appreciated it! My sister would pick him up later.

By the time Aaron got back to the hospital, I had gotten my epidural (~10:30) and was feeling much more relaxed. I warned him not to come back without food and he didn’t disappoint. We were the only ones in the labor and delivery ward so everything felt especially very calm. We spent most of the day debating names and relaxing. Once it was time, I pushed for 45 minutes. Zoe was born at 4:32 pm. The craziest part was the doctor who delivered Max at VCU was the on-call doctor at St. Francis. She wasn’t my primary OB for either pregnancy but somehow managed to be on call both times. Thanks Dr. Hempel!

The biggest difference was Aaron didn’t stay overnight at the hospital with me. He felt really bad about it, but there was a lot going on and we wanted to minimize the amount of change for Max. The next day Aaron, my mom and Max came to see Zoe. Max was pretty excited, especially since his new sister got him a pretty awesome buzz light year toy.

Max’s birth story is here.