At each ultrasound the doctor would measure the baby and make comments about how big he was measuring and that he figured he was going to come early - so even though my original due date was May 14th, it was then moved up a few times…all that to say, by late April, I was antsy to have this baby and ‘feeling’ like I was late, even though maybe I wasn’t.
Saturday, May 12th I woke up grumpy and uncomfortable but life had to go on - so I got the girls ready for ballet and we headed into ballet with our friends Jess and Brittany with the plan to go to the pool after ballet and meet the Dad’s there as they had gone golfing (we were all trying to distract ourselves from the lack of baby in our arms). I started timing contractions in the car at 9:30am and by 10am decided they were consistently 8-10 min apart, however they weren’t intense at all. We walked around center square, got popsicles for the kids and waited for Ali to finish dance. At 10:40 I called Tristan and told him that it probably was the real thing and we should go to the hospital. (Hospital bag had been in the car for 2 weeks)
Tristan showed up at 11:05, they offloaded all the pool toys in the middle of center park with a row of cars honking behind and I
jumped crawled in
the front seat (I should have chosen the back). Tristan asked me how fast he
had to drive and I told him I thought we’d be good (from the edge of town our DR is 35 min away in the next town over and we were in the middle of traffic in central ). My contractions immediately picked up to over 1 min contractions with
less than a min break in between - Tristan was driving literally as fast as the
car could go through the curvy mountain roads. The tollbooth was backed up so
he drove over the cones and through the motorcycle lane while he’s calling the
hospital to warn them that they’d better be ready. My water broke at the
tollbooth (3 miles from the hospital).
The main boulevard into the town was super full and backed up - Tristan had the flashers on, honking the horn, and waving out of the window for cars to move (which didn’t help much because it’s Honduras and drivers don’t care much about aggressive driving). Two blocks before the hospital we were stuck not moving behind a string of cars and I felt the baby was crowning and felt his head! ((At this point Tristan was telling me “no, no, no -the baby wants to meet the doctor!")… I pulled down my shorts and caught his head - Tristan made a third lane and squeezed through and parked at the hospital, came around and delivered Gabriel’s body and handed him to me. Gabe gave one cry and then didn’t seem to be breathing (scariest minute ever holding your not breathing baby). Tristan ran inside reception shouting for help and then drove the car around to the emergency entrance. The OBGYN came out and gave mouth to mouth and cleaned out his nose and then he started breathing! The Pediatrician came out, they cut the cord and baby was taken in to get some oxygen. Tristan then helped me out of the car and onto a gurney.
Gabriel was with the pediatrician for a long 2 hours until I got to hold him again. Tristan watched at the nursery as Gabriel was given oxygen and they tested his glucose (which was low). Maddy and Ali came to meet him around 4pm which was a very sweet moment. Gabe’s sugar levels were low and he was lethargic (I don't blame him after that trauma)…so by the middle of the night when he started crying & finally nursed, we were happy to hear the cry and see him perking up.
We came home the next day (Sunday) and since have been recuperating and enjoying getting to know our sweet son.
Are you wondering about the car? - yes it was a disaster. After 2 days at a carwash and a complete gutting of all the carpets, the car is clean and even smells clean J.
Moral of the story: don’t wait too long to call your husband because having a baby in the front seat of a car isn’t that great (although getting to catch your own baby and hold him first was pretty incredible).
We are so thankful to God that Gabriel is healthy and that there were no serious complications - I’m so thankful we were close to the hospital when he came out instead of a mile farther away. I’m thankful for our great doctors who both were at the clinic and ready for us (even on a Saturday morning). God has been so gracious to us and we are so grateful for our healthy son!
Gabriel means: “God is my strength”