Our fourth son Zero was born on Nov 14, 2012 at 00:00 — and some of you have wondered: “Wow! How did that happen? Did you time it that way?” So here’s a pictorial birth story of baby Zero and how he was born at 00:00.
Wendy went to Washington Hospital on the morning of Nov 13 for her NST — a procedure required because of the low “PAPP-A” level in her blood. During NST, our OB walked in and recommended Wendy to induce the labor and delivery today! Wendy was so caught off guard by this suggestion that her blood pressure meter suddenly shot up (as shown on the monitor)!
I drove to the hospital to consult with the OB about this. We had wanted to avoid labor induction, because our first 3 babies were born totally naturally, without any medicine. But unlike our past pregnancies, according to our OB, Wendy’s low PAPP-A this time means that the “natural” result for this pregnancy could be the baby’s death the longer we wait. She also said that she’ll use the gentler method of rupturing the membrane to induce birth, and Pitocin would only be used if that didn’t work. So Wendy and I took her suggestion to induce labor today, but we requested a couple of hours of time to go home and make preparations. They scheduled a 11am induction. I thought: that’s great, I’ve always preferred if the baby could be born in the morning or early afternoon (our other kids were born in the evening).
Anyway, we went home and started packing…
… but when we got back to the hospital at 11am, they told us that an unusually high number of pregnant women had unexpectedly shown up in the last two hours. And because of the shortage of nurses, they will need to send us home and wait at least a few more hours. So we left, and waited, and waited.
It was a long wait, but we finally got a call from them. We got back to the hospital around 4pm, ready for battle!
After rupturing the membrane, we waited some more, and even watched a TV episode from our iPad, but the cervix was still only at 3cm (i.e. no change from the morning).
So around 9:20pm, they decided to put Wendy on Pitocin, starting at 1 milliunit. This was when I first asked Wendy, “Do you think the baby will be born today or tomorrow?”
It was an interesting scene because Wendy was connected to all these tubes. There was a generic IV because of her gestational diabetes, some sugar water because of her low blood sugar, and then the Pitocin.
The Pitocin seemed to be taking effect. The contractions became very regular, and they got progressively more intense. I know that Wendy has a high tolerance of pain, so even though she’s been very calm throughout, I could tell Wendy was advancing in stages of labor (thanks to the Lamaze class!). We used the birthing ball to help ease the discomfort and let Wendy move around a bit more.
About every hour the nurse would come and ask how Wendy’s doing, and when Wendy seemed to give her a calm answer, the nurse quickly turned up the Pitocin and left. On the third time, we made sure the nurse stayed to hear what we had to say and to take a cervical measurement. It was around 11pm and the cervix now measured about 6cm. Wendy still looked calm, so the nurse turned up the Pitocin again (to 5 milliunits by now) and went outside.
Soon afterwards, Wendy started having super-intense contractions, and sweated profusely, and I could recognize that as signs of the “transition” phase of labor. We called the nurse back in and we all realized it’s time to get the OB to come. We like our OB and we want her to be here to deliver the baby. The OB was supposed to live about 8 minutes time or so.
As we were talking, suddenly Wendy wanted to push. I looked at the clock and it was about 11:45pm or so. The nurse said, “Wendy, lay on your side and don’t move.” It helped. Wendy was able to hold the urge to push for next couple of contractions much better while on her side. But it seemed like her contractions went on forever with almost no break in between. She grabbed hold of the nurse’s hands tightly, and we’re thankful that this nurse was good at coaching her. The nurse called the hospital OB to be there as a standby. But Wendy was getting more and more intense, to the point that she yelled, “I can’t hold it anymore! Get the hospital OB!” The hospital OB rushed here, but she stood by the door of the room, hoping to wait a little bit longer for our own OB to be here. After another long and intense contraction that Wendy was barely able to keep from pushing, Wendy said, “Is the hospital OB here? Get her in here! The baby is down there right now! I can feel his head!” So we lay Wendy flat on her back and there is was, baby Zero sticking his head out! And the hospital OB guided the baby to slide out.
Right at that time our own OB arrived and she quickly took over. She looked at the clock and said, “Let’s call it… zero zero… zero zero. Hmm… 00:00 I think it’s the first time I’ve delivered a baby at 00:00.” I was stunned. And then I realized that they use the 24-hour system (from 00:00 to 23:59). I quickly took a picture of the clock.
Then, like a few seconds later, as if on cue, the OB turned to me and asked me, “What is the baby’s name?” I said, “Zero.” She said, “What?” I said, “Yeah, the baby’s name is Zero.” She gave me a “Wow! No kidding!” look. The nurse chimed in and said, “Yeah actually earlier tonight they told me the baby is going to be named Zero. How interesting.”
So that’s the story of baby Zero’s birth at 00:00! And below are some more baby Zero pictures. Enjoy!
And here’s a commemorative birth certificate from the hospital to make this “official”: