First Time Labor

William Yawning

First Time Labor 

Labor is like nothing I have ever experienced.  It is by far the hardest thing I have ever done in my life. Physically I am in great shape and it is a good thing because my labor lasted just over 45 hours.  If I were to count the first signs of my labor starting it would be 62 hours.  However, I am not counting those hours because my contractions were not constant, nor were they painful during those first 17 hours.

First Signs Of Labor

My first signs of labor started Sunday night/early morning June 1st.  I woke up around 2am to a small gush of fluid and my underwear were wet, but not soaked.  It did not feel like I wet my pants, it felt different.  I then began to wonder if my water had broke.  I started googling it in the middle of the night and I was so excited, hoping this was it.  I then began having pink/bloody mucus (sorry TMI)  along with Braxton Hicks that felt like cramping (but nothing horrible).  All night I thought for sure I was in labor. The next morning I texted my mom and doula to let them know I might be starting early labor.

Did My Water Break

As I went about my day I began to doubt I was in early labor because I was not feeling any pain or continuous contractions.  I decided to call my doctor and ask about the wet underwear. They said to come in just in case my water had broke.

Doctor Check Up

During my check up my Doctor did a few different tests and all of them came back negative for my water breaking.  My dilation had moved from a 1.5 to a 2.5 so there was progress, but I probably wasn't really in labor yet.

Early Labor Begins

Then that evening, around 7 pm Monday, I began to have regular contractions with cramping.  The cramping wasn't awful at first, but as the night went on they became more painful.  Being that I have never been in labor before, I was thinking I would be having William the next morning or afternoon of June 2nd (Tuesday).  I was so excited!  I called my mom and doula to let them know this time it had to be labor.  I explained the contractions and my doula and mom assured me this was early labor for sure.

Doula Arrives 

My doula (Christina) came over in the morning and we went for a mile walk.  We then came back to the house and relaxed.  Having a doula allowed my labor to feel less stressful and easier then it would have been on my own.  She helped me with breathing techniques, timing my contractions and massaging my hands and feet.

Supportive Husband

Justin was also very helpful and supportive.  I am so thankful for such a wonderful husband.  We were both thankful to have my doula there because she made everything less stressful.  Being in labor for the first time is scary because you don't really  know what you are in for.

Calling Holy Family Hospital

Around 4:30pm Monday I called Holy Family Hospital and was hoping to be able to go in.   My contractions were 4-5 minutes apart lasting about 50 seconds each.  They were painful, but I was able to breathe through them.  When I called I was expecting them to tell me to go ahead and head in.  However, the nurse told me to stay home until the contractions were 2-3 minutes apart lasting for 1 minute each.

Having To Wait

This was not what I wanted to hear because at this point my contractions were pretty painful and I was ready to go in and have William.  After all I had been in labor for 21.5 hours already.  I was expecting to have already had him by this point in time.

Grandmas House

We then decided to drive over and visit my grandma because someone was coming to look at our house (on the market).  I had told our agent it could be shown earlier that day in the evening because I thought for sure we would already be at the hospital.

Walking & Puzzles

At my grandmas house we did a puzzle and went for another mile walk.  When we returned home my contractions got worse.  They felt almost unbearable and I didn't know how they could possibly get worse.  By 9:45pm I decided I needed to go to the hospital.  When we arrived at Holy Family it was about 10pm and we walked in and told the front desk I was in labor.

Arriving At The Hospital

A lady arrived with a wheel chair ready to bring my up to the maternity floor.  I was not expecting to be wheeled away in a wheel chair (but it did feel good to just sit).  When we arrived on the maternity floor I checked in at the front desk and then they wheeled me back to the rooms where they first check and evaluate you.  They had me pee in a cup and change into a gown.  The nurse then checked my cervix and I was dilated to a 4.  I remember thinking....only a 4, I thought I would be at least a 6 at this point.

Being Wheeled To My Room

I was taken to my room and the nurses asked me a long list of health questions.  They took my blood pressure and got my iv hooked up.  They then wanted to monitor me for a little while before I would be able to try out the big tub.  I originally was planning on using the tub right when I arrived. My mom arrived around 10:45 to help be part of my support team through labor.  I could not have done it without my husband, mom and doula.  After they monitored me for a little bit the contractions began to feel unbearable.  They were very painful and I didn't know how much longer I would be able to keep breathing through them.


I finally decided I would get an epidural after 30 hours of labor.  Once I decided I was getting one it felt like forever before the anesthesiologist came in.  When he came in around 1am he explained the process to me and had me sign a paper.  I then had to lean forward and sit completely still through my contraction and William kicking me in the ribs, while he placed the epidural into my spine.  Once he was didn't take long before I was feeling no pain.  It was amazing!  I was so thankful for my epidural.

I Can't Feel My Legs 

After the epidural the nurses had to continue changing me from one side to the other every hour. Having numb legs and toes is the weirdest feeling ever.  My doula massaged my feet all night long, which helped a ton.  It also helped my body to stop shivering (which is an uncontrollable side affect of the epidural).

Sitting Up Was A Bad Idea

In the middle of the night I decided to sit up and try and take off my sports bra ( I don't know why I left it on).  It had been making me feel itchy.  Sitting up was a bad idea because I instantly started to feel light headed.  The nurses then rushed in because William's heart rate started to drop when I felt this way.  They then put me back on my side and William started to do better.  I was only able to be on my sides for the rest of my labor because being on my back was not a good position for William.


I had a newer nurse who was checking my cervix and he had last told me I was a 7.5.  Then my doctor came in around 8am in the morning and checked my cervix.  He said I was a 5.5.  He asked who measured me last?  To hear 5.5 after thinking you are a 7.5 is the worst feeling ever.  I felt like I had so far to go.  I hadn't made much progress from when I arrived.

Breaking My Water

My doctor then broke my water around 8am Wednesday morning and a little while later put me on pitocin to help speed up the process.  I was dilated to a 9 by 12pm.  The doctor came in and checked me around 1:30 and had me practice pushing.  He said I was a 10 and ready to start pushing, but they would first need to turn off my epidural so it would wear off enough to feel myself push.

2 Hours 10 Minutes of Pushing

At 2:30 I started pushing and I pushed and pushed for what seemed like forever.  I was so worn out at this point.  The pushing was so hard.  Way harder than any workout I have ever done.  I finally long had I been pushing.  They said 1.5 hours.  No wonder it felt so exhausting....with every push I felt he should be coming out, but then he wasn't.  It was mentally very hard to keep pushing with all my might.  I was beginning to wonder if I was going to be able to push him out.  His little head kept showing when I would push, but it was like he was stuck.

Doctor Arriving To Deliver William

The doctor arrived, and after a while must have began to be concerned because he suggested I may want to consider the suction cup on William's head.  He said I would need to give hime 95% effort in order for it to work.  If I was too worn wouldn't work.  I thought about it and after a couple more tries decided I should go for it because I was beginning to get scared they were going to have to do a c-section to get him out.

Being Able To Watch My Son's Birth

They then positioned the mirror so I could see William when I was pushing.  This helped tremendously. I decided to wait on the suction cup and try again.  I pushed and his little head was half way out.  I then pushed again and his head came all the way out.  Next the doctor turned his little shoulders as his entire body came out.  It was the most amazing thing to see! He was born 6/3/15 at 4:42 pm, weighing 8 lbs 1 oz. and 21 inches long.  His name is William Montana Rundle.

Resuscitating William

I had wanted delayed cord clamping, but my doctor had to cut the cord immediately because William was not responding at all.  I had also wanted skin to skin right after, and they set him on my chest for about two seconds and then quickly rushed him over to be worked on by 2 nurses and then 3 nurses and then the anesthesiologist rushed in and began working on him.  He was not breathing and it was the most scary moment of my life!  I laid there across the room being stitched up as they were working hard to resuscitate my little baby boy.  I was so upset!

Hearing William Cry 

When I heard him cry it was the most wonderful sound in the world!  He was going to be okay.  Justin was able to bring him over to me and I held my baby boy for the next several hours.  We are so in love with our little boy.  Words can not describe what it feels like to hold your baby for the first time and look at him.  After 9 months of waiting to meet him, loving him before we ever met him, we felt so happy and blessed.

We were able to bring William home the next evening.  He was doing so awesome they did not require us to stay 48 hours. 

Post Pregnancy Nutrition, Workouts & Updates Coming

My next update will be on my first week of recovery and my first week as a mom.  I will also be doing a video on my goals for the next several months.  If you are trying to get back in shape and would like to follow along for motivation, please do.  I am planning on having a weekly update and workout video (as soon as I am feeling up to working out again).




About The Author

Jessica Rundle

My name is Jessica Rundle, and I'm a career trainer (cofounder of Workout Anywhere), wife, high school strength/track coach and new mom! It's my goal and passion to help others live a happier and healthier lifestyle! Learn more about the training movement my husband and I started at Workout Anywhere !

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