It took me about a day to completely believe that I actually had the kind of birth I wanted. The fact that it happened in our home was the icing on the cake. Here is the story of my labour and birth of my daughter Emily.
It was 5 days before my due date and I woke up from my afternoon nap with some cramping. Didn’t think anything of it so I continued with my usual routine. It wasn’t until after supper I started thinking about how this might actually be labour. I decided I should get some things taken care of just in case. I had a full shower, and it felt great! So I cleaned up the bathroom while I was in there. (This should have been a good giveaway that this was really labour) Once I was done with that I felt the urge to get everything ready. So I cleaned up the whole upstairs, while Trev clean up toys in the family room. Once done we met on our main floor and got the living room and kitchen tidied up.
At this point I had still not timed my “cramps” at all, I didn’t want to get my hopes up if it was false labour. We decided to go to bed and if I couldn’t fall asleep we would start timing them.
After about an hour of being in bed I decided it was time to get the timer out. During my second timed contration I felt the gush! (10:30pm) At first I was in shock, my water had never broke unexpectedly before. Than I realized I hadn’t made the bed and needed towels now. Trev got me the towels, than a few blankets so I could move to the floor and stay laying down. We had to page our midwife right away as at our last appointment the baby’s head was still high and they wanted to know if my water broke.
After talking to the midwife for a bit on the phone, and feeling some baby movement I was ok to move about, so I made my way downstairs to where Trevor was setting up the tub. I put on my music and rested between contractions.
My midwife showed up and checked me around 11:30. I was 3-4cm. She moved the head a bit to let more water out and I am more like 5-6cm. Good sign my cirvex is like butter. I continue listening to my music, moving around as needed, spending time on the ball, sitting on the toilet, and leaning over people.
At some point the contrations change from I’m able to breathe through them into OMG back labour. I wanted in the pool and I wanted in now. Of course murphy’s law would kick in, while Trev was supporting me the tub was not watched. The water went cold and it was not at a temperature that would help me. From that point on in my labour there was only 3 things I wanted heat across my back, pressure near my tailbone, and talking so I could concentrate on something else. My midwife checked me (never told me where things were) and told me it was time to go for a walk. So to help things along, and try to get baby to turn and get off my back, I went for a walk, it hurt to walk but I knew it would help. I went up and down the stairs, walked around the main floor. Did as much as I could, when I was done my midwife sent me to bed :). How long Trevor and I spent in bed I do not know. It was actually very nice, quiet and dark. He laid behind me so when I had a contraction he could get the heat pack to my back and apply pressure. He ran out of things to talk about so he talked sports. I didn’t care I just listened to the sound of his voice to help me get through the back pain. After awhile I started giving small pushes at the end of the contractions as it helped with the pain. After some time, a trade of Trev and the moms, some position changes and more of my little pushes after back pain subsided I decided I was done in bed and wanted the tub.
For me and my back labour the tub did not provide enough relief. It was very nice between contractions but I missed the heat so much. I was feeling done. I wanted to give up, either baby was coming now or I needed pain meds. I was pushing with each contration once the back pain passed but felt like I was getting no where. If I wasn’t at ten and ready to have my baby soon I was giving up! It was at this time that my midwife was reading my thoughts (or it felt that way anyways)
Out of the tub I get onto a “made up” bed on the floor in front of the fireplace. My midwife checks me and I am ready! I was so happy to hear that.
With some help from her a bunch of very hard painful pushes I get my baby off my back. Now all my pain is in the front, I reach down as if touching the pain will make it stop and am shocked that what I touch is to top of my baby’s head. Keeping my hand around that head I feel the difference each push makes in bringing baby closer to me. It gives the the strength to keep going. I only let go because I can’t bend any further and the head is totally out. Than in an instant our perfect beautiful baby is placed on my chest.
The pure joy of that moment was amazing. Trevor and I were able to have that moment where it felt like it was just the three of us. It was everything I had hoped for and more. After what felt like a long time someone asked what “it” was. Neither one of us had bothered to look. We didn’t care. When the cord had stopped pulsing and it was time to cut it, Trevor checked the sex and discovered we had a GIRL. He than cut the cord and she was returned to my chest to enjoy her first meal. There are no words for the feelings that followed, the instant bond, the love we all shared, it was pure bliss.
We were very lucky to have such an amazing support team with us for this life changing moment. Both our mothers where there along with our midwife, second midwife and a student midwife. Halfway through we were joined by our two dogs who behaved extremely well and got to stay in the room. Close to the end our second midwife showed up and my pushing “noises” woke up our toddler, so he got to be there for his sisters birth!