Because I spent pretty much all of February having contractions, the doc sent me in for a non stress test on March 3 (which was my due date) to see how Shirley was tolerating them. And the answer was "badly," so she decided to "augment" my labor. (I had to suppress a cheer when she told me she was inducing me.)
I also have a morbid fear of needles. (Boy did I ever pick the wrong profession, eh?) So I figured an epidural would be the last choice for pain relief. But by the time I got to 5cm dilation, I was so hung over from the other drugs for pain (which made me care less about the pain, but didn't seem to reduce it much) that when the nurse explained that I could be conscious and alert and reasonably pain-free with an epidural, my irrational fear of needles aimed at my spinal column seemed a lot smaller in comparison.
Then Shirley's heart rate started doing bad things, and (although I was still hung over at this point) I knew we were headed for C-sectionville as soon as the nurses started putting me in weird positions to relieve the compression on her umbilical cord. It wasn't how I would have chosen to have her enter the world, but she obviously needed to come out!
In other news, my beloved employer and the California Nurses Association are at loggerheads once more. After negotiations stalled out yet again, the union held a vote a couple of weeks ago on whether or not to authorize the bargaining team to call another strike.
Which meant that as I was getting admitted for the induction, as soon as the nurse knew that I worked at the hospital, she said "We're having a strike vote in the Sierra Room--if you hurry you can still make it!"
Thank God maternity leave is an iron-clad excuse to avoid picketing!