I’ve attempted to write this story a few times and to be honest I’m not sure where to start. I feel like I should start from the beginning because it wasn’t just one day but it was such a journey.
I knew before I was pregnant that if I ever had to go through pregnancy, birth and labor again that it would be different. With my first child, I did what was expected and frankly I felt ripped off. I don’t blame anyone – but this time around would be different ….
There was no
OB appointments, ultrasounds, blood tests, scary threats of scheduled c-sections or pressures to induce.
The first time I saw my daughter she looked at me with her beautiful blue eyes, so wide open to the world – it was important to me to give her that gift. I didn’t want her drugged up and I wanted to be fully present when she made her arrival.
Here is my story of a natural, homebirth.
Monday Morning 9/5 Labor Day (4 days past my due (guess) date)
Ironic, but yes, I started my labor on Labor Day.
It was about and I started feeling a few contractions laying in bed. There were a few and they would come about 7 minutes apart but then would fade away throughout the day. I pretty much just hung around the house that day with my husband and my 2 yr old daughter, Elizabeth. We went for a few walks around the block. I was anticipating something happening but it never did that night…
Tuesday Morning 9/6 (5 days past due date)
I stayed home from work on Tuesday. I had woke up again at with the same contractions, 7 minutes apart. I still got up and got ready for work – I am a creature of habit.
My husband woke up around and I told him that I think we might have a baby today. He looked at me unconvinced considering I was a week past my due date and I had been saying that for about a month now. I was surprised when he said he would stay home from work as well. It made everything a lot more real.
We went for a walk that morning with my daughter and the contractions hung around. Still coming every 7 minutes. I didn’t have to stop walking through them but they were definitely there. I felt happy that I knew my body was doing the work for me and I didn’t have to mentally drudge through terrible pain or anything like that yet. (though I never had to)
I called my midwife to tell her what was going on and to tell her she might be needed later.
That afternoon strolled around and still, 7 minutes apart. I intentionally tried to stay upright as much as possible and when ever I got a contraction I would lean against a wall or table and swing my hips back and forth. It wasn’t because I was in pain, but it helped me focus on the feeling of the contractions. It sounds insane but I enjoyed the intensity I was feeling. I wasn’t focusing on what was going to come or how, when, why, where…I just experienced it. I was trying to practice for when they did become more intense.
I took a shower and a nap and it felt nice. The contractions were definitely more challenging when I was laying down though.
I went outside to spend time with my husband and daughter who were out back washing and waxing my car. The fresh air was nice. The contractions now were demanding more of my attention. I would lean over the car and wouldn’t talk to anyone, swaying back and forth just breathing slowly and deeply.
I can’t recall what I had eaten that day, but I’m sure a grazed all day like I normally do.
I had been experiencing contractions all day – 7 minutes apart. They had become more demanding but did not change from that 7 minute timing.
Once 5 o clock rolled around my husband asked if I wanted him to call his mom to pick up
. My midwife had mentioned that once Elizabeth was taken care of that things might go full swing. I told him to go ahead and call – I felt sad saying good-bye. Elizabeth
gone, I lit some candles in the kitchen and was walking around the island, drinking water. My husband was on the couch watching TV and talking to me. Every time I would get a contraction I would stop, lean over the isle, sway back and forth and breath deeply. Elizabeth
It was nice. It was just me and Kory. It was dark in the house except for the light of the TV, a few candles and a lamp. The contractions were now coming about 5 minutes apart and I would catch myself moaning through them. They weren’t terrible, just intense at times.
I called my midwife. My husband told me that I should call – but I didn’t believe anything was going to happen anytime soon….i must have been in denial.
I thought I would take a break from walking and standing. For my next contraction, I had gone over to the couch and leaned over, with my knees on the floor and my arms over the seat-I had two contractions this way and it was a lot more intense. After the second one, I had told my husband I wasn’t sure how I was going to do this. I couldn’t imagine it getting anymore intense then it already was.
I went back to my safe spot in the kitchen where I had spent lesser intense contractions hoping that it would go back to that. Waiting for my midwife to arrive, for a short while the contractions weren’t as intense as the two I had in the living room…but that changed.
My husband asked if he should call the midwife again to let her know that things were picking up quicker then expected. She was on her way and I could hear her talking over the phone. She was giving him instructions in case she didn’t make it.
I had another contraction and it was rough to hold it together. I was worried. “Could it get worse?!”
The oddest thing about contractions is that they can be intense and take your entire attention, but once they are over it’s like any other day. I was back to normal, talking and walking around.
Luckily it didn’t get worse – that was the last contraction I felt that intensity. Instead, now I found myself in another predicament. I could feel the head down there. It must have descended, but I could definitely feel something I hadn’t before.
I didn’t feel like pushing… until I got another contraction.
I think I had two or three pushing contractions before my midwife arrived. Well, I didn’t have to push. I had the choice of feeling that intense craziness of a contraction ..or I found out if I pushed through them I became a part of the intensity instead of just experiencing it. It was out of this world.
Finally the midwife peels into the driveway.
I was still in my safe spot in the kitchen by the island. My midwife asks me if I want to go upstairs like I had planned. I asked if I could just lean over the couch. I couldn’t imagine going all the way upstairs into unfamiliar territory.
She started throwing down those large flat pads to protect the carpet and I had went ahead and de-pants. I had a sports bra on, but that’s it.
Now, the once intense couch position that I had avoided was my friend. I leaned over the couch and just pushed with the contraction. It felt perfectly right. After each pushing contraction my body gave me a break and I looked over at my husband, he was throwing on a pot of boiling water. I had no idea why he was doing this but I recall it was to the request of my midwife. (I later found out it was to warm the conpresses she used to protect me from tearing)
My midwife had to run out to the car, I didn’t know what for and I didn’t give to much attention to it. I just remember my husband saying, “I thought that was an old wive’s tale.”
I remember responding, “No, it’s just a midwives tale.”
I was telling jokes whilst pushing a baby out. It was neat.
Once she ran back inside-it was time.
The contractions came and I pushed. After a few I became pretty exhausted from giving my all. My husband was there with a wet cloth on my neck and rubbing my back and it felt heavenly.
Very soon I felt like I had accomplished something, I could feel the head down there but every time it would go back to where it was before. I imagine that’s normal so it can stretch everything out accordingly but it was still frustrating.
I pushed again, and then again and I was amazed – how big could this head be?!
Finally the head came out and I felt like I could take a nap. I pushed again, thinking the rest would just slip out.. that wasn’t the case. I had a few more pushes and then finally, I was done!
I flipped around and pulled the baby close. It was all slippery and warm. I remember seeing those eyes...just looking all over, studying everything going on.
The first words I said, “That was a lot of work.” Very matter-of-factly.
My midwife checked if I needed any stitches, but I didn’t any. We sat there for awhile waiting for the cord to stop pulsating and I breastfed a little.
We still didn’t know if the baby was a boy or girl. I had asked my husband to look but he insisted I take the first peek. I looked and looked at him. I told him it was another girlie!
I was so happy – I had my natural birth, my husband, my home, and my second little girlie and we were all healthy.
I took a long warm bath following while she got weighed and checked. We called my husband’s mom to bring
back home. She was surprised how quick everything went. Elizabeth
I laid down in my bed with my little girls and my husband and there was nothing more needed.
"You gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience
in which you really stop and look fear in the face."