The night before I went into labor, my husband and I were busy prepping for our neighborhood rummage sale. We participated the year before and made quite a bit of money, so we knew the effort would be worth it, not to mention a cleaner house, clutter gone, and money in our pockets for the new baby! We stayed up late pricing items and I had no idea how much the next morning would change our lives forever.
I went to bed with a rather sore throat and even dreamt about my throat in pain. I was up every half hour trying to find a way to soothe my throat. At 4:30am, I conceded defeat and texted my boss that I wasn’t coming in but would be there the following day. I had two weeks before the baby was due and they really needed me there to continue prepping for my maternity leave.
I got up to go to the bathroom and when I was returning to bed, I felt a little trickle “down there.” It was so odd but thought maybe I didn’t fully empty my bladder. I told my husband about it, and we still decided he should go to work because it was probably nothing.
Throughout the morning, the trickle kept happening at really odd times. I would be resting on the couch or sitting at the table and all of a sudden, a trickle. By noon, I started to think that maybe it was something, but movies always showed your water breaking as a pretty obvious thing. I called my doctor at Moreland-OBGYN and they suggested I come in right away to see if it did indeed break.
They confirmed almost instantly that I was leaking amniotic fluid, aka my water broke “a little bit.” It was time to head to the hospital and have my baby!!! I was in shock and had tears of both excitement and nervousness. This was not how I imagined it happening. Was I ready? I had only packed my hospital bag that morning just in case this was something. The car seats weren’t installed yet. Is it ok my baby is early? Who would watch our dog? Many more odd questions raced into my head, but he was coming regardless how ready we were.
I called my husband and told him it was time and he zoomed out of work to meet me at the hospital. I was admitted and got myself set up in my suite at Waukesha Memorial Hospital. I also called my parents as the plan was for them to be there with me—mom even in the room for the delivery. They stopped by the house and let out our pup on the way (one of my worries out of the way).
At this point I wasn’t feeling any contractions yet, but that would change very quickly. They started me on Pitocin because once your water breaks, the chance of infection for the baby increases due to the sack being open. The nurses and staff came and checked on me every few hours to see how I was progressing, and it was a slow go. I started to feel more contractions, but I still wasn’t dilating.
I’ll give you the brief run down of the next seven hours
- Contractions got very strong—think of a menstrual cramp on mega-steroids
- I must be ready to push – I was very wrong
- Contractions were stronger and I asked for my epidural, because you can at any point
- Epidurals are amazing—I felt amazing for the next few hours
- My cervix wasn’t dilating and the nurses were confused. The on-call OB, Dr. Trester saved the day and realized I had scar tissue preventing my cervix from dilating. One quick snip and bam, four centimeters.
- Started to feel some contractions and thought these must be strong ones before the baby comes. WRONG only seven centimeters and the epidural was wearing off.
- Redoing the epidural was going to slow the process down, so I trudged forward feeling every contraction
- Having a solid support team is critical. I needed them to take my mind off the pain, feed me ice chips and tell me I was doing a good job.
I remember the moment when the on-call doctor told me I could start pushing, and again, I was thinking the baby would be here soon. I pushed on every contraction, for an hour and a half! My mom was there to count me through the contractions, and Jake was by my side holding my hand and comforting me. The nurses were having a hard time monitoring my contractions with their gadgets, but I assured them that I would be able to tell them every single time and I wouldn’t be missing any of them because that was my opportunity to push. It HURT! I couldn’t feel myself pushing as that area was all numb, so I just hoped I was doing it right and Cameron was progressing. The nurses were telling me I was doing a great job. But it definitely wasn’t one of those two pushes and out pops the baby.
Cameron’s levels began to decrease a bit with every push, so I was put on oxygen. Also, my blood pressure was still really high and I was put on something for that too. There were some tense moments of monitoring me, and being in labor with an oxygen mask was horrible. Breathing through this contraption on your face, while in pain, and all hyped up, does not make for a pleasant version of myself. But I was going to do whatever it takes to have my baby safely.
My husband was an amazing supporter for me and put on Pandora/Bon Jovi radio to help me find something to focus on. The nurses loved the station we chose, and we were having a little party between contractions (Side note: when not contracting, it is so weird that you feel completely normal–no pain at all. Your body gets a moment to recover and prep for the next contraction.) The nurses said they would make sure the baby wasn’t born during a commercial break or a bad song.
The doctors came and checked on me and told me I was doing well but wasn’t there just yet. They left but with the next contraction they were called back in because Cameron was finally ready to be born. I remember hearing Girls, Girls, Girls by Montly Crue, and the nurse told Jake to change the music quickly. I don’t remember hearing what song came on, but I do remember doing the final push and then my son was set on my chest. He was born to Rocket by Def Leppard, one of my husband’s favorite bands.
I did it! He was here. I felt like the entire room got silent and it was just my husband, my baby, and me – but in reality – there was a handful of nurses, doctors, and my mom. He was perfect in every way and I can’t explain how much love flooded through me to him in that moment. I was instantly in love and he was my everything.
Waukesha Memorial believes in the first hour of the baby’s life being skin-to-skin with the mom. No weighing, no measurements—just time on my chest and attempting breastfeeding. And sure enough, Cameron wriggled himself down and latched on to me to nurse.
Cameron (CJ) and I were both monitored after his birth—me for blood pressure to make sure it was back under control, and CJ for infection because of the sack rupture. Hourly temperature checks for him and every 20 minutes my blood pressure cuff would check me. Adrenaline and joy kept Jake and I awake for a total of 39 hours straight. And CJ wanted to eat a lot, so getting rest in those first days after a baby is impossible, but I would do anything for that little guy.
I entered the hospital around 2 pm on Monday, June 10 and had Cameron James Appleton at 3:39 am on Tuesday, June 11, weighing 7lbs, 4 oz. and was 21” long. I’m glad he didn’t wait until his due date, 15 days later, or he would have been a rather big baby. He came out absolutely perfect and loved by so many.
As for the rummage sale items, my parents packed everything away in our basement and we will have a massive rummage this year. We are so blessed to have CJ in our lives. Stay tuned for more adventures while we figure out our new normal and grow with CJ.
Hi! I’m Sarah, 38, and have lived in Waukesha for over 10 years. My husband has two tweenage daughters, Violet and Samantha, and they live with us half the time. This past June I gave birth to my baby boy, Cameron, who is my whole world. We have a rescue pup, Letty, who is an Alabama Designer dog–an Australian Sheperd/Catahoula/who-knows-what-else mix. She keeps us on our toes, wanting food and attention all the time. Being a new mom to Cameron and an insta-mom to the girls brings joys and challenges, but I am soaking in every minute because kids are only kids for so long. I love Waukesha and have my own blog about my experiences in the area. When I’m not out and about in the city, I’m enjoying time with my friends grilling out, drinking wine, and playing games—Uno is one of our faves. Or I’m in my kitchen trying new recipes or recreating ones I have had at local restaurants. // FoodFunWaukesha Facebook// Instagram // Blog