Bryan had Friday off, so we got to have a long weekend together. It was really nice to have him around more! Samuel got to spend lots of time listening to him tell stories and read books. He loves his daddy's voice! On Friday afternoon and Saturday, Bryan and I did some gardening and work outside on the lawn and in the garage. I may have done a bit too much because (TMI alert) later in the day on Saturday, I lost my plug. (I'll assume you all know what that means). To be honest, it freaked me out a bit because I'm only 34 weeks and that seemed to be too early. But I did my best to keep calm and to remember that God is in control. Later in the evening, I started having some very uncomfortable cramps. They were not happening in connection with any other labor-related symptoms, so I tried to just relax. When I woke up Sunday at 3am with quite intense pains, I started to become concerned. The pain was similar to a menstrual cramp, but was a bit more intense and at times I had to close my eyes and concentrate on breathing just to make it through. I was also experiencing (TMI alert) more plug-like discharge at the same time. I began to get a bit anxious. "This can't be labor, can it?!?" Since Bryan was still sleeping, I decided to clean the house (just in case). So I went from top to bottom and cleaned, stopping now and then to hold on to something and breathe during a cramp. *Me to God: "he is too little! Don't let him come early!" God to me: "duh"! :) But then, once again, I remembered that He is in control and there is nothing I can do about any of this. So I relaxed again.
After a few hours, and now with a sparkling clean house - including a load of freshly washed bathroom rugs (something every new baby demands) - I woke Bryan up to see what he thought we should do. Since I still wasn't having any contractions, I didn't really think I was in labor, but I just didn't know what to do. We decided it would be better to go in and be checked out then to just wonder, so we got in the car and headed to the hospital. (Happy Easter to us!) We checked in and they hooked me up to a fetal monitor. This whole time Samuel had been moving regularly so I wasn't concerned about him being ok. I knew he was! His heart rate was perfect and he showed no signs of stress. I was not having any contractions (per the machine) and after being checked, I was not dilated at all. There were signs of effacement. While we were sitting in the room, I began to realize that it wouldn't be long until I would be doing this for real. Yikes! That's a bit scary...but I can do it. Bryan was SO wonderful! He is going to be a great labor coach. He rubbed my feet and back during cramps, he spoke lovingly and kept me calm. He even joked that if I wanted a tour of the Mankato birthing center, we probably could have just scheduled one. :) He helped me feel safe and not to worry. He is a wonderful husband and I love him dearly!
After a LONG time of sitting around, the nurse came back in and said we could go home. There were no signs of pre-term labor and they weren't sure what was causing the cramping. I was told to just take it easy. The bummer was that it was now late morning and we weren't going to make it to church. We had been looking forward to a great Easter Sunday service (and I didn't to get to wear my pretty Easter dress - boo!) But things don't always go as planned... so we just headed home to rest. I was still having cramps, but since they weren't worried, I wasn't going to worry. The nurse told me to lay down and drink lots of water. So that's what I did. We had planned to go to Bryan's parent's house for the afternoon, but we decided it wouldn't be the best to drive an hour away so we had to cancel. They obviously were very understanding.
After a nice long nap, we were talking about things and I realized something: it never even crossed my mind that Samuel wouldn't be ok. Not because I don't care, but because I am completely confident that God is in control of his life. How awesome to not have that added stress of worrying if he will be ok! Thank you, Jesus! I also realized a few other things. 1. Despite purposely not having a hospital bag packed (because I don't want to plan for an early labor as we pray specifically that he will be born in his due time), I did have a moment of anxiety when I went to the hospital with no bag packed. So it might not hurt to do that in the next few days... 2. After getting in to a gown at the hospital, I had a shocking realization that my legs were not shaved. It was not my finest moment. So, note to self: be sure to shave legs before going to hospital in the future. 3. Although we have most everything Samuel needs at first, none of it was washed! He didn't have an outfit ready! (*Not to worry! I made sure to wash every single item he owns at my earliest convenience after the nap). Now, he has clean outfits in his bag, ready to go (in 4-6 weeks, we pray). 4. Compared to the Rochester hospital, the Mankato birthing rooms are dumpy (no big surprise there, I guess). We really do want the luxury suite atmosphere of the Mayo Clinic hospital!
Now, it's Monday, I am still having some cramping but it's lightened and Samuel is still just kicking away as per usual. We had a regular doctor's appointment this morning and he told me to just rest. So that's what I'm doing. I made myself a nice little spot with the remotes, my DS, my phone, the laptop, lotion and anything else I might need.
This weekend was just another reminder that God is so faithful! Although there were moments of uncertainty, He never once left us. I never once worried about Samuel's health. We have so much to be thankful for! It wasn't our expected Easter, but that's just the way it goes.
I'm super excited for this weekend, my best friends Jaimi and Traci are throwing me a shower! It will be so much fun and I can't wait to see lots of friends from the cities.I'm so thankful for good friends :)
For now, if you need me, you'll find me on the couch (or, let's be honest, in the bathroom every 15 minutes or so...)
*Only 1 more month to go! (Mommy can't wait to snuggle you, Samuel!)