The Birth Story: Extended Prelude

Cristina, Rich and Carrie at Liberty State Park yesterday

Cristina, Rich and Carrie at Liberty State Park yesterday

My wife Carrie Lincourt and I are due to have a baby on July 25th 2013!

That’s yesterday.

Apparently first time moms do tend to run about a week late. We thought that we might be the exception, but it’s Friday, a day “late” and there’s no baby here yet. I thought I would write down some of the story of the last couple days… and how we thought maybe we’d deliver right on our due date.

On Wednesday night, July 24th, Carrie’s dad and stepmom arrived in town. We went out to dinner at Rustique, and during the meal, Carrie started having contractions. We knew it was early and this early labor could last days… could come and go… but I, at least, got excited that things were moving and the baby would arrive any minute… or at least in a day or two.

We took a long walk out to the Jersey City waterfront, marveled at the views of the Manhattan skyline. We also marveled that the weather had mercifully taken a turn for the cooler. We got home, texted our midwife and doula… timed a contraction – 7 minutes apart! (Early contractions are 10-20 minutes apart, late ones under 5 minutes.) We slept. The contractions were around in the morning… somewhat intermittent, not especially painful. Carrie described them as a sort of semi-continuous dull menstrual cramping. We ate a big breakfast, hydrated and went for a really long walk to and through Liberty State Park.

We got home. Hung out a bit with Carrie’s mom who had arrived. Took a nap. Dined. Went to see a movie.

Contractions continued, but were intermittent. Sometimes 8-10 minutes apart when we timed them… sometimes more than 20 minutes. They were kind of coming and going. Carrie’s uterus wall – her belly – would get really rigid. Our doula and midwife suggested that we go about our normal lives, enjoy the time, drink, eat and sleep.

This morning, Friday July 26th, we met with our midwife, at our regularly scheduled appointment. She had some good news: the baby is lower, in the perfect position, all ready for a the big first birthday… but… it’s looking like that might not happen for a few days or a week… or who knows. The baby’s heart beat is strong. All signs indicated that we’ve got a healthy happy good-sized kid on the way… but we’re not in labor just yet.

Our midwife said that this is pretty common. Before the big birth labor, sometimes there’s a smaller labor. Occasionally, expectant parents will go to the hospital then, and enter a cycle of in-my-opinion premature interventions… but we’re just waiting. We’re doing a home birth here in Jersey City. We’ve got great professionals assisting, and lots of accoutrements – including a 6-foot diameter birthing tub.

Thanks to all the friends asking on about how things are going. They’re going fine, progressing sweetly… but the baby probably missed that memo about the July 25th due date. She (or he) will be coming out when she’s ready. Soon. I will get the word out pretty soon after the precious new one arrives. I promise!

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