It’s the first time I’ve been back to my blog in a week or so and I was surprised to see that Sunday, the 18th of April was the busiest day on my blog EVER! Well, I was a little bit too busy that day to be posting! We welcomed the newest addition to our family at about 3:45pm that afternoon and well, I was too busy admiring him that evening to post anything else!
Here’s his story to add to Morgaine and Liam’s birth stories……ENJOY!
We arrived at Prince’s Inlet Retreat in Lunenburg, Nova Scotia nearing my 38th week of pregnancy. I’d had a feeling that perhaps things were going to happen a little bit of the earlier side of 40 weeks as opposed to later so we’d decided to head down to the cottage a few days earlier than planned in order to get some time to enjoy the area before the newest arrival. I was picturing walks along the water and just relaxing as a family of four. Unfortunately, within a couple days of arriving we each got hit with a flu bug one after the other. Liam, Mommy, Morgaine, then finally Mike. It was not a fun time for anyone dealing with fevers, chills, coughing, gagging, stuffy noses and all that jazz while I continued to have pre-labour symptoms. I felt like my body was ready but I just couldn’t let go because everyone else was so sick..
Finally, by Friday, the 16th of April, Mike was making some improvement and I started to get into somewhat of a regular contraction pattern later that evening after having a nice day out and about. By Saturday morning I had the feeling that this might actually progress into real labour eventually. I had a home visit with the midwife that morning and I asked her to give me a little check for curiosity sake (I’m interested and I wanted to see if we’d get the same measurements). At that point I was a good 2 cm and stretchy to 4cm and 50% effaced. The baby was very low and in a good position at that point. We talked a great deal about having the midwife present just to be there and for her to be VERY hands off. We’d let her do what she needed to do to allow us to birth at home being “high risk” but otherwise she was to do nothing at all unless we asked her. Being totally cool she was into that and encouraged us to do so.
After she left my contractions started coming every 15 minutes and I started loosing tons and tons of show. By Saturday evening they gotten to about every 8 minutes or so and had gotten somewhat stronger. Mike and I pulled out the hide a bed and watched After Armageddon (what a wonderfully enlightening show to watch in labour *lol*). I tried to get to sleep after that but laying down wasn’t working so well for me so I got into the tub where the contractions quickly started coming every 3-4 minutes but I was quite able to rest in between them. I tried to get out of the bath to sleep a little but once out I just couldn’t fall asleep so back into the tub I went (it must have been close to 3:30am at this point). This time while resting I felt the baby completely shift and go posterior. One of my worst fears and what I’d try to avoid the whole pregnancy. The contractions got intense and close together at that point but really not that effective at doing much. At 6am I woke Mike and we hung out in the bathroom for the most part with tea and Cheerios. I was handling things well but we decided to call the lady we had helping with the children and the midwife as well. The midwife had 4 births in the previous week and was to be all over doing post-partum visits so we’d be warned to call her early. She arrived at about 11:45am and we just hung out in the bedroom. Mike spent some time preparing lunch for the family and things were quite chill. The midwife was very discreet and let me do my thing observing from her little nest on the floor. We did end up placing a saline lock in case of hemorrhage but that was about it in terms of intervention. I did have her check me a little while after she arrived to confirm that the baby was indeed posterior (though there was no doubt in either of our minds). At that point, I was 4-5cm and completely effaced but the baby’s head was not effectively pushing against the cervix. Her feeling was once it did then things would fly. I was completely sick of short little intense contractions and discouraged but took some homeopathics to help turn the baby and hopped into the tub.
Mike and I continued to hang out in the bathroom but the contractions slowed down significantly in the water and at that point I was ready to tell everyone to just go home. In my head I was only contracting to get that baby to turn and once he did every thing would stop and we’d have a baby a couple weeks later. I pretty quickly got out of the water and the midwife left us together in the bedroom for a while. I hung out on the birthing ball while Mike looked at one of the board games we like to play and discussed some of the cards with me. Nothing much was happening so I was happy for the distraction. I had a couple longer contractions that found me hoping off the ball and sinking low to the ground and the midwife must have taken notice of the change in my voice because she quickly came into the room. I think that our help for the kids took notice too because she got the children dressed up and took them out for a walk.
As soon at the midwife walked into the room the contractions started coming one on top of each other. Again, not too terribly long but intense, and almost constant just because of how frequent they were. I was NOT a calm birther in the least and despite knowing that everything was normal and having a ton of doula tricks that I felt like I should totally be capable of using I just couldn’t relax into this birth at all. I was totally in my head the entire time and that was very obvious. We soon started pulling out the Rescue Remedy and other Bach remedies. I started to get somewhat pushy and it felt like I was sitting on baby head but I knew that it wasn’t time and was likely a result of the baby being back on. I mentioned this to the midwife and she said things would be much better once my waters had opened. At that point, I told her to just break them and she said she could. However, she didn’t get up to do it so after I has a couple calmer contractions I told her that I would just like to have the waters opened. She told me that the baby would just melt away the cervix when his head got applied to it but I was completely unaware that she really, really meant what she said.
I was still only about 5-6cm when she checked me and while using some gentle hand maneuvers as she was breaking my waters the baby turned into an anterior position and I went from 5cm to fully dilated under her fingers. I was completely freaked out. I wanted to get to the toilet for my customary first couple pushes but the midwife said there was no time and the best thing I could do was get on my left side and just let the baby come. I COMPLETELY clamped down at that time. There was NO WAY that the baby was going to come out of me while I was laying down. I NEED my two feet firmly on the ground to birth. Nope, no baby today….thank you very much. I had Mike in such a tight grip and the midwife telling me I was doing it all on my own (at that point, it felt to me, like SHE had accomplished the whole labour). FInally, some Rescue Remedy was shot under my tongue and didn’t that leg lift up and onto the midwife’s shoulder. I begged the midwife to just get the baby out and out he came. A massive, MASSIVE head and a little tight shoulder and I had the baby in my arms. 8 minutes to go from 5cm to baby in arms! I felt a tad shell-shocked but that completed passed almost immediately.
The kids came in right away to see the baby but at almost that moment the placenta separated and some bleeding started so fearing the worst I quickly shooed them from the room. I was given a second injection of pitocin but the bleeding was pretty controlled though the midwife did feel the need to help the placenta deliver just because she really wanted to allow me to stay home after this birth. She tried to get the IV flowing but it just wasn’t working for her and at that point she actually relaxed and said “you know, you are holding up your end of the bargain and aren’t going to bleed too much and your body is telling me so by not allowing me to start this IV. You are going to be just fine.” I did ooze a bit like in Morgaine’s birth but NO WHERE near the same extent and things were pretty chill. The kids came back in….Liam was quite smitten with the baby but Morgaine thought that the room smelled bad so she was a little less sure of things. We did the newborn exam with the whole family assisting and it was lovely to have everyone involved. The baby was a lovely chunky 8 pounds 7 ounces, and 21 inches long with a 37cm head (that’s the 90 percentile folks!!). The consensus was that the baby was probably about a week “early” despite my calculation that he was born on his due date. We all hung out for a while and by 3 and a half hours after the birth everything was looking perfect and the midwife was on her way home. I got up and looked at the photos we’d gotten (none of the birth this time) and posted a little welcome to the world message on Facebook and then snuggled up with the newest addition for a glorious long night’s rest.
I did not get birth photos this time around but these are just a few of the photos we took during his first couple hours of his birth.
First glimpse of my beautiful baby.
Seeing their brother immediately after birth.
Nursing within the first 30 minutes.
In Daddy’s arms.
Looking intently at the midwife looking at him.
The children helping with the newborn exam.
This story is in it’s beginning phase and may undergo some changes over time but I know that there were a few out there that were anxious to hear it so I felt it best to get it posted sooner rather than later.