First off, many of you know how challenging it was to conceive this baby. I am fortunate that although it seemed like it took forever and we had our share of trials, our first attempt at In Vitro Fertilization worked just fine. For many couples, that is not the case. I am thankful for all the support we have received and for a very special person who donated anonymously so we could pursue our dreams of having a family. You are forever in our prayers.
On February 20th at around 6:30 pm, I started getting some uterine surges that were radiating to my low back, they were slightly uncomfortable. They lingered all evening coming regularly but never got more intense. My midwife Bea told me to get some sleep and see what tomorrow brings. So, I slept well, waking only at some surges. At 3:00 am, I felt a large surge, when it subsided; I realized I was hungry so I got up to eat a bowl of cereal. After, I was done eating, I felt no more surges and so went back to bed.
At 12:30 pm on tuesday the 21st (my Estimated Due Date), I started getting contractions coupled with AF like low back pain. I sat on the yoga ball through them, swaying my hips in a circle but they didn’t seem too bad so I was able to continue eating my lunch. My husband had just brought me a tuna sub. I ended up eating 8 inches or so, I was hungry! Contractions were slowly getting more intense so I started timing them with a contraction timer app on my Droid phone. I was still feeling fine as surges weren’t too bad so I wasn’t really paying attention to how far apart they are. I decided I would take a warm bath after my husband went back to work. At this point the back pain got more intense through contractions so I decided to start listening to my HypnoBirthing Birth Affirmations while in the tub. I remembered to breathe the way I learned to in HypnoBirthing. This was the moment I started to believe that I may be in actual labor.
After about 10 minutes in the tub, I realized that my contractions were lasting 1 minutes and 30 seconds! I wouldn’t have realized that but I checked my phone app. I was trying my hardest to not pay attention to the timing and just focus on breathing. I was a little shocked as the breathing must have helped me through them, I did not realize they were so long. I also had been having surges that were 4 minutes apart for the last 35 minutes! I decided to get my husband back home since we are supposed to come to the birth center when surges are 4-1-1 (4 minutes apart, one minute long, for one hour). The drive to the birth center would take us 35 minutes. I called my midwife and told her to expect us. Dave got home around 1:45. He was calm and collected, thank goodness. He loaded up some food for laboring and to eat after the birth. We were out of the house in the next 20 minutes or so.
The drive to the Birth Center was pretty rough. I listened to my HypnoBirthing again and held conversation with my husband in between surges. We decided we would call the photographer (our friend) and Dave’s mom to let them know we were headed in but not to come yet. The bumps on the road made it hard for me to focus during surges so I was really irritated about that. I remember thinking that I just want to lay on my side but that was impossible in a seatbelt. Surges continued being consistent and were between 3-4 minutes. We arrived at the birth center around 2:40. I made sure I had just had a contraction in the parking lot before coming in as that meant I have 3-4 minutes to get comfortable in the birthing suite.
My midwife, Bea led us to one of the rooms and I ripped off my clothes to get checked, I was horribly uncomfortable in them anyway. All I had was my new nursing bra on. Bea did an internal and told us that I was at a 7-8 centimeters, extremely thin and that the baby’s head was only a fingertip in. I think she said I was at 1+ station. She said “you are having a baby soon, you should probably call whomever you want to be here”. Wow!! We were both shocked! Dave hadn’t even brought in our bags so he went out to the car to get them while I laid on my side in the bed. He called my doula, his mom and our photographer. I felt really great laying on my side at that point. I was trying hard to do what my body was telling me to and I think that helped a lot. Bea asked me if I wanted to go ahead and get the bath water running so I could get in. I told her not yet, I just wasn’t feeling the water at this time. Although, I was originally planning a waterbirth.
My husband set up my birthing playlist and my doula came sometime in the next 20 minutes or so. When my doula came she asked if I maybe wanted the birthing ball. I thought it sounded nice so she put it on the bed and laid over it with my baby blanket on top of it. I like the way the satin feels on my face, so I really enjoyed that position. I remember chit chatting in between contractions with everyone. We laughed and talked about all sorts of random things. At one point, a song came on that I knew my husband didn’t like so I told him to change it so he didn’t have to hear it. Then we all laughed about how concerned I was that my husband didn’t like that song. My doula rubbed my arms through surges and Dave was behind me rubbing my low back. It really helped me get through surges. I asked Bea to start the tub water to prepare for my waterbirth. She asked what kind of oil I wanted and I said Lavender. It wasn’t long before I could smell the lavender enter the birth suite.
I continued to labor on the bed while laid over the birthing ball. At 3:44, I felt the urge to rock back off the ball and onto my butt, I remember what I felt was extremely intense but I stayed there because I felt like it was progressing things, just then I felt a pop and my water broke. I said “Whoa, what was that?” and I looked down and told them that my water had broke and there was blood too. Bea told me that my surges might be more intense now….and they were! I pulled my body back on the ball and then decided I needed to vomit. Luckily, it was more like spit up and was all coconut water instead of my sandwich earlier. I also felt like I needed to go to the bathroom but knew this was all apart of transition and that I would be having the baby soon.
I moved off the ball and lay reclined on the bed with my legs bent at the knee. Bea told me that the tub was not full and asked if I was comfortable where I was. I felt that I was and wasn’t upset at all about the tub, I knew I could have the baby right where I was and that everything would be fine. I was feeling so confident. I felt the urge to bear down in the next contraction. It definitely felt different from what I thought it would feel like. I started to use my birth breathing to breathe the baby down. I could feel a lot of pressure but I was able to still breathe her down. I visualized the baby moving down to be birthed. I never felt “the ring of fire”, just a lot of pressure as she was coming down. Bea kept asking me to slow down, but I was just going with my body so I couldn’t. After 20 minutes of breathing the baby down, Bea had me turn to my side and Dave held up my leg for the next contraction. Just as the surge came I felt the warmth of my babys’ head and then almost instantly, her body as well. She came out in one big gush, the feeling was indescribable and she was so warm! She was immediately put on my belly. Her cord was so short that she wasn’t brought completely to my chest. Bea said later that she had me turn to the side because the baby’s hb was slightly lower than it had been and she felt it was time to progress things. It was a total relief to be done and to meet my daughter. She was born at 4:13 and the placenta came at 4:30 so a total of 4 hours for the labor. I can hardly believe it.
We spent the next 2 hours cuddling and bonding as a family, it was amazing. We cut the cord just shy of 10 minutes when it stopped pulsating, then I was able to hold my baby girl on my chest. The placenta came easily and effortlessly at 4:30. Around 6:30 she was adjusted by a Chiropractor and measured by Bea.
Everybody is healthy and happy. I had no tears so that’s good and we were home by 9 that night. Aspen was 6lbs 15oz and 20.5 inches, she’s beautiful.
Bea later told me that I made labor and birthing look effortless and she was impressed by my calmness. That was the best compliment! I think it was a huge help that Dave and I took the HypnoBirthing class, it definitely prepared me for the process but labor itself was unimaginable.
Leave your Testimonial
(Your email will not be published)