FYI: Posted a bunch more pics - just click here to view!
I'm sure many of you are wondering how it all went down last night after my last post around 7p...
An hour after Stacey had been dilated about 8cm (6:30p), I left Sue in the room with Stacey (about 7:30p) and went downstairs for some air and to use the restroom. Upon arriving back in to our room, the curtain was drawn, the doctor was in and prepping to start active labor. I could not believe it! The doctor was great and really wanted to see us have a natural birth and not have to go to have a C-section (Stace was dreading that - and I think with our normal doctor, he would have opted for the C without a doubt - that's how much of a fine line we were walking on). So, we had to move quickly as there was still some complications with heart rate a bit high, Stace having the fever, and the possibility of infection.
Active labor started around 7:54pm. They turned off the epidural once labor started and the contraction measuring device was not working at all for some reason, so we had to go by feel for each one. Stacey was a champ, and really pushed awesome and strong for being so tired. I took position on her left side, holding her head forward and left leg up during contractions, as well as rotating counting to 10 three times for each one with the nurse (who was on her right side). Sue was helping me at the head of the bed with ice water washcloth duty and Patty was also on leg support. The doctor had told us this stage usually takes around 2:30 hrs so we were ready for the long haul. I hadn't had a chance to eat any dinner besides a pear and a couple chips so at this point I was just hoping not to pass out as I had a pretty bad headache as well.
After about maybe 30 minutes of pushing, Grace had really started to get close to emerging, very much to our surprise! The doctor started prepping for delivery at this point, readying the table, and getting all of her instruments together. This was such good news as it was pretty much confirmed we would not have to go for the C-section, however the doctor said she would like to use a small amount of suction to get her out as soon as she could and because of Stacey's smaller pelvis. Patty had moved to the other side of the table holding Stacey's right leg, and after a bit Sue moved down to help with her left leg as the table was gone now so Stacey didnt have anywhere to set her legs down.
Around 8:37p Grace was on the verge! Stace was pushing strong like a champ and really impressed everybody in the room - the doctor, nurses, and of course, myself. The doctor used a slight bit of suction and after really only after about 5 minutes of pushing, at 8:45pm our little Grace was born! I recall the first thing I said to Stacey as soon as she came out was, "it's a girl!!!" (definitely exciting because we had been kind-of dreading it would be a boy at this point after we had gone all-girl on everything, clothes, decor, and of course, the mural!) I was able to cut the cord, which was pretty cool and something I hadn't been expecting to do, and then they turned the baby over to the other nurses / doctors in the room for the initial cleaning and tests.
I then left the bedside and went to take pictures on the other side of the room where they were dealing with Grace (the birthing suite was quite large - there was probably 15 people or more in the room at points). It was such an awesome experience and a great blessing that the delivery moved along so well once we were in active labor, as she came much faster than anyone had expected which also we hope helped vastly improve her chances of not getting any infection. I guess after I left the bed they removed the placenta and discovered Stace had 2nd degree natural tearing and they had to stitch her up which took a bit.
I was over at the warming table snapping pics and watching as they tested Grace. She did not cry much at all and was so attentive - eyes wide open the whole time looking around and barely fussy. Everyone could not believe how awake she was as she couldn't stop taking in her new world and staring at yours truly. They did her weight, her footprints, and attempted to get her dimensions. After that I was able to hold her for the first time - I dont think she took her eyes off me the whole time. However at this point I wasn't feeling so hot, just light-headed from not eating, a bit exhausted, and sweating some from the heat in the room, so I had to go get some fresh air. I did not think I would expend that much energy but I really should have eaten more - oh well, now I know for next time!
When I came back up, Grace was on her way over to the Special Care Unit and everybody (New Grandparents Patty, My Dad & Sue - Carrie, Stacey's Aunt Karen, and Kasey) was leaving for the night. Headed back to the room to see Stace - there was still quite a bit of blood on the floor - but she was doing very well and eating a sub! After that Staceys Dad and Pam, who had drove up from Virginia during the day and arrived in time for the delivery, took off and we were finally alone together... just missing our baby down in the SCU.
I went down to check on Grace about 15 min later, it was maybe 10:30 at this point. The doctor said she was doing great and everything was looking to check out, they just wouldn't know about any infection for 48 hours. I was able to spend some time with Grace before heading back to the room. Stinks she could not be with us in our room but as long as she is healthy, that is all that matters - and we do have the rest of her life to spend with her! I think that's where I left off last night... I'm sure I have forgot some things and it all seems like a bit of a blur at this point, but that should be the jist of it! We are now proud parents of an adorable baby girl and could not be happier!