Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Pushing The Wagon

Well, all the funny stories and expectations of what we hoped labor would be fell away Monday night. Now at noon on Tuesday, Savannah is closing in on 30 hours of labor, with no sleep.

Following what seemed like strong and well-paced contractions and a soak in the home tub (photo), we drove to OHSU Tuesday morning about 1:30 a.m. thinking we would be bouncing baby Liam on our knees by morning.

Not even close.

We got checked in to the hospital room and they hooked Savannah up to some electronic monitors, and everything seemed copasetic. Angela, Savannah's great friend, joined us despite the late hour.

Then, Savannah’s favorite midwife, Penny, who was there at the time, helped check her out and we got some not-so-great news: no dilation. That means the door for Mr. Liam to enter the world (at least the 'regular' door) was still closed. Disappointed, we packed up and returned home about 4:30 a.m. Angela went home as well.

Once at home, Savannah was wracked by contractions every 3 to 6 minutes and has been ever since. No chance for any sleep, and she feels she must stand most all the time, as lying in bed is too painful. She has refused any pain medication. She feels it is important to experience this uniquely female journey in all its glory - and pain. If things go awry, we will of course administer proper medical intervention. But so far, it is all going well, albeit slowly.

Our doula (a professional delivery helper), Taunia, arrived about 8:30 a.m. Tuesday and is definitely helping Savannah in myriad ways. The contractions are less painful with her guidance. She knows many more relaxing positions as well. But the contractions keep coming, and with no sleep in over a day, Savannah is very tired and her little body is fatigued. But she soldiers on like a trooper. By the way, Savannah is also a doula. But even doulas need help.

We have a saying in our home: "pushing the wagon." Whenever Savannah or myself feel tired or don't want to do something that needs to be done, we remind ourselves of the pioneers who settled this area, often traveling in covered wagons, and what they had to go through to just make it here. Very often, on some of the seemingly impossibly steep passes through the Cascade mountains (no Highway 26 back then), the pioneers families would have to get out and push the wagon to make it over the top of the pass, no matter how crappy the weather, how sick (or pregnant) they were or how dangerous it was. Some didn't make it. You have to push the wagon very hard.

Right now, Savannah is pushing the wagon very, very hard despite no sleep and great discomfort.

We want to thank everyone who has been calling and texting. Your support is very important to us. As things change, I will try to keep the blog updated. Thanks for your prayers and support.

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