Incredible home/water birth!
Our baby boy, Johnny, was born on January 21 at 40w 6d. I had been having Braxton Hicks for weeks and was dilated 2cm at 38w 5d and 3cm at 39w 5d. My midwife did a membrane sweep at 39w 5d and I had lots of cramping and contractions for several hours afterwards, but they subsided before bed. I had spent the last 2 weeks walking on the treadmill, doing hundreds of squats, bouncing on the ball, stretching, yoga poses, drinking red raspberry leaf tea, sex, eating pineapple, you name it! I continued all of those during week 40 as well. This baby wasn’t coming until he was good and ready though! The day before he was born, my husband and I spent almost all day running errands and getting last minute things done. That night I bounced on the ball for over an hour and did lots of squats and ate a pineapple core. About midnight we were still wide awake, and I was curious to know how far dilated I was, sooo my husband checked me and I was about 4 1/2cm!! We went to bed shortly after and at 3:33am I woke up to a “real” contraction and immediately knew this was it, but didn’t want to really believe it. So I used the bathroom and got back in bed. Well, I battled sleep for the next hour because every 4-5 mins I was having a contraction. I finally got up at 4:30 to shower. After the shower, I started timing contractions and they were less than 4 mins apart and lasting just over a minute each. At 5, I used the bathroom and noticed my bloody show. I woke my husband up at 5:07 and told him I was in labor. I called my midwife at 5:48 (I should’ve called sooner but for some reason I was still in denial?!) and then called my mother in law at 5:50 to come help with the kids. By 6am, the contractions were 3 mins apart and lasting for a minute and a half. They hurt, but not to the point of wanting to die. By the time the midwife got there at 630, I was on the floor of my bathroom with my legs spread out in a squat position leaning over the ball and I was in pain. Midwife checked me and I was a 7. She and my husband were rushing around getting everything ready and when a contraction hit I had my husband behind me squeezing my hips together. LIFE SAVER. It was amazing how much it helped with the pain. But at this point, I was only getting about 20 second breaks between contractions and they were double peaking so each contraction was lasting well over 2 mins. The tub was filling up with water still so I was laboring on the floor in different positions. Side, all fours, over the ball, and squatting and leaning on sink. Hubby still squeezing hips during each contraction. About 7:05 the pain got very intense and the pressure was very strong. Midwife checked me and I was an 8. She suggested getting in the tub then and it took a couple contractions to get in and comfortable. Within 5 mins though, I was soooo hot and wanted to get out. The pain was becoming unbearable, but my husband was in the tub with me squeezing my hips and telling me I was doing great and helping me relax. The nurse had a cold cloth on my head and face and that made a huge difference as well! The nurse was also telling me to relax my shoulders, then my back, then my bottom, etc., all the way down. It helped so much to be told exactly what to do because I could visualize doing it and once I relaxed the contractions were still painful, but bearable. At 7:25 I stood up and couldn’t get back down. He was coming. I knew I needed to push - the pain was the strongest it had been yet. But I was standing! The midwife asked me to either squat down or sit down in the tub so baby wouldn’t fly out. 😂 After getting through the next contraction, I was still standing and felt the incredible urge to push and half yelled “I’m either about to poop or he’s coming out!” I bent down a little and pushed and yep, poop came out, but I didn’t care because I felt him come down and knew he was coming out soon! I turned and squatted down with hubby behind me pushing my hips and supporting me and let out a yell and kept saying “ring of fire! Ring of fire!” and I needed to push! It was so intense! This was about 7:33. I started pushing with the pain and they could see he was coming. At 7:35 after 2 pushes, his head came out and after a 30 second break, I pushed his shoulders and the rest of his body out! Oh the relief!!!! His cord was short so I couldn’t get him up to my chest so he laid on my tummy for about 20 mins until the cord stopped pulsing and my hubby was able to cut it. I got out of the tub at that point and sat on the edge to deliver the placenta. That came about 5 mins later and again, I felt more relief! After that I was able to get into my own bed and lay and nurse baby with hubby next to me while midwife checked for tearing (NONE!) and cleaned up with the nurse and her assistant. It took about 3 hours for them to complete paperwork, check baby, do footprints for birth certificate, and weigh and measure. My mother in law fed them all breakfast and hubby and I got alone time for about 30 mins before they came back upstairs to our room to check both baby and me once more before leaving. We were alone with baby and the rest of the kids by 11am just hanging out in bed. It was the most incredible birth experience I’ve had out of all of mine! All others were born in a hospital and this was our first home birth. Baby Johnny was 7lbs 13oz, 20 1/2” long. Total labor was 2 mins shy of 4 hours. Not gonna lie, when I hit 8cm, part of me didn’t think I was going to make it, but with all the positive support I had, I did it and it was such an empowering and raw experience, I will never forget it! Huge shoutout to my hubby who was in the tub with me, my poop 😳, and my blood, and who stayed with me every second. It made me fall in love with him all over again. Welcome to the world, Johnny! 😍