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Josiah, born on 11/17/2004 (I was due 12/1, so he was born at exactly 38 weeks) at 11:03 pm.

My oh my! What an experience this was for me! It was very rushed and traumatic for me. Where do I begin…on 11/17/04, when I was exactly 38 weeks pregnant is when it all started. I was sitting at the computer desk, holding Nesyah (my-baby-who-is-not-so-much-a-baby-anymore) in my lap. She made me laugh, and just then I felt a gush! My water had never before broken on its own. This is my 5th baby I was carrying and with all my prior pregnancies, the doctor always had to break the water for me. Anyway, I run to the bathroom and of course it was definitely my water. It is 5:40 pm. I call my husband at work and tell him to come home right away. I did not fully pack my hospital bag (bad Patrice!) or pack my children's bag so that they can stay at their grandparents' house. I did, however, have a list! So, I am running all around the house throwing in all the things on the list, telling my son Jalen (he is 9 years old) what to add to the children's bag, calling my mother, my mother-in-law and the doctor, all the while praying that I don't start to get contractions.

My husband made it home just as I finished packing up everything, and helped get my bags and me into the van. Yahnell and Yana (my other children) were already at my mother-in-laws house, so we dropped off Nesyah and all their clothes, etc. there, and took Jalen with us to the hospital. I walk into Labor and Delivery while my husband and Jalen park the van. I told them that my water had broken and the doctor said to come in. They had me wait in the waiting room as they prepare a room…that was a big shock to me. I thought they would rush me in a room and have things set up already. I guess they were really busy that night…the waiting room for Labor and Delivery was quite full. Anyway, my husband and son make it up to the waiting room. I am called in. Was told that Jalen could not come in because children are just not allowed in that section of the hospital.

I am taken to a room, and my husband rushed to take Jalen to my mother-in-laws house. I put on the gown, get in the bed, get hooked up to the monitors, and the nurse checked me and confirmed that my water had broken, and told me that I was 3-4 cm dilated already! I had no idea, LOL. I hardly had any contractions! Anyway, she also told me some disturbing news. She said that the baby had passed his stool already, so I may need to have a C-section! With all my other children, I had given birth to them vaginally, and to be told that I may need a C-section was totally shocking to me. I called my dad (he is an OB/GYN) and told him of the situation. He said that as long as the baby's heart rate is okay (he gave me the technical terms, but it is now 12 days later and I can't remember them, lol) then I should be able to progress without a C-section. Well, the doctor came in and said that things were going okay. My husband came back from dropping off Jalen.

A little while later the doctor comes back in and checks the monitor. He looks at the monitor…and looks…and looks. Then he said that I was having a contraction (news to me…I could hardly feel a thing) and the baby's heart rate took too long to come back up. Within 10 minutes I was in the operating room. I was shivering because I was so nervous. The operating room was sooo cold and sterile and bright and totally uninviting and scary! I have been to nursing school, so I know a thing or two about operating rooms, but it is totally different being on the table as opposed to being a student! I met the neonatologist that will exam my baby once he is born. I was told to sit up on the bed to receive the spinal. I was totally expecting to get the series of shots that I had usually received with an epidural. But, it was just one injection that I received. I was so glad about that! By the time that he took the needle out and I was told to lay back down, my legs were already getting very numb…that was pretty quick. Anyway, they lay my arms out and put up that blue 'paper' so that I will not be able to see the operation.

At this point, my husband is allowed in. He was a 'sight-for-sore-eyes!!! I cannot begin to tell you how comforting it was for me to have him there. They start the operation. There was so much tugging and pulling and moving and pressure. I was holding onto my husbands' fingers. Mentally, I knew I was holding them pretty tight, but when I thought about how tight I was holding them and that I should not hold them so tight, I could not stop holding onto them! Poor man…I know I probably was squeezing the life out of them, but I just could not let go…I love him so much! Soon, I hear the suction going and then I hear my baby crying! I nearly started crying! It was the most beautiful sound I have ever heard. They take him to the baby warmer and continue the suction and do the usual examination. His Apgar was 9 and 9! Perfect little guy. I finally release the grip on my husbands' fingers. They bring the baby over to me and he is beautiful and perfect and beautiful and perfect and beautiful and perfect…you get the idea, lol.

They gave me a sedative…I don't know why, but I guess that is the normal procedure.
I get to the recovery room and am sleeping off and on. After a while, the nurse told me to draw my knees up and then grab onto the bed rails to lift my bottom off the bed. Well, that was one of the worst pain that I had ever experienced. I gave birth to Jalen without any pain meds so I know what pain feels like and that pain was way up there as well! I could not do it. I had to do it in order to be transferred to my room so I can see the baby! I tried and tried and could not do it. It felt like my belly was coming apart and I told the nurse and she just coldly said that she promises me that that is not going to happen and that I should continue to try. I can guarantee you that that nurse had never had a C-section before! She is not on my list of 'good' people; did not like her one bit. I still could not do it. The pain was just too intense. My husband comes in, and I start to cry. I wanted so much to see the baby and that nurse was keeping me from it! Anyway, I guess she finally saw that I was doing what I could do (or maybe her shift was ending and the only way for her to leave was for all her patients to be transferred to their rooms!!) and I was sent to my room. I FINALLY get to hold my baby! Oh, the love, lol! That is my little champion.

I thought about all the things that could have gone wrong. If my water had not broken, I would have not been in the hospital and therefore would not have known that he passed his stool and that his heart rate was declining! God is so good! There is no way there would have been such a victorious outcome if it were not for God intervening! All my praise goes to God.

Our baby's name is Josiah, which means God heals! There is no better name for him! He weighed in at 6 lbs and 8 ounces, and 19 inches, my biggest baby.

Thanks for reading if you made it this far
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