I will try to post a birth story in parts, so let's start with how we got things going.
Friday December 11, I was 41weeks, 5 days. Our midwife gave us a recipe for something called a natural induction cocktail earlier in the week, and we decided to give it a try on Friday. We were really hoping to avoid a medical induction using proglandin gel or pitocin, which would require hospital stay and most often leads to other interventions because of the close monitoring and potential stress to the baby. While there was no drop date for doing this if baby continued to respond well to testing, I was getting increasingly uncomfortable as each day passed.
We had a non-stress test that day which showed baby was still healthy and ticking away (they measure fetal heart rate and contractions and look for a good variety over an hour period). She responded to my braxton hicks contractions well, so they let me go home.
The cocktail consisted of a small amount of castor oil, an herbal oil called verbena oil (the secret ingredient) and then some apricot juice and peanut butter to make it like a smoothie. You down this twice about 5 hours apart.
I did this on Friday, taking the 2nd shot around 5pm. By 11pm I had some early contractions start. These progressed throughout the night, but never became consistent. We didn't get much sleep. Regan was a trooper, holding my hand and coaching my breathing through the harder ones, keeping time on his iphone - he found an excellent use for a lap time function Mac should consider promoting in their next campaign. By the morning, the contractions petered out again until they were only a few an hour. My mom came over, and we tried to get some sleep during the day. My pre-labour had officially begun.