(This post was 5 months in the making!!)
Baby Will, due January 21st, surprised us 3 weeks early. On New Year’s Eve I was nesting like crazy. No party for us– I was full speed cleaning and freezer meal making. I must have known he was coming soon….
New Year’s day I had lunch with friends and spent some time with Kevin and Jackson. That night when we were laying down to go to bed, I sneezed and peed a little….typical. I got up to go to the bathroom and realized that I just wouldn’t stop peeing. I tapped Kevin on the arm (who is already asleep) and whisper, “I think my water broke but I’m not sure…” (During my last birth, my water didn’t break until I was pushing so I was unaware of what the feeling was supposed to be)
After an understandably long night tossing and turning, unable to get to sleep, we wake up early for my already scheduled midwife appointment. My friend Jenny watched Jack so Kevin and I could be prepared for whatever the doctor would tell us. Beth, one of my midwives, was skeptical at first, but after the exam said with 100% confidence, “Well, looks like we’re having a baby today!”
What?! I wasn’t even having contractions! I knew from my birth classes that your water could only be broken for 24 hours without the risk of infection, so if your water broke prematurely and contractions weren’t starting on their own, you may need to get induced or have a c-section if things weren’t progressing. Either way, if you’re water breaks, you’re having a baby.
She sent me home to “get labor started.” Determined to have the birth I wanted without interventions but knowing its extremely hard to get labor started out of thin air, I laid in bed and watched a few shows on Netflix and used the breast pump. Luckily by 1 pm I was having a few light contractions! Kevin and Jackson picked up Penn Station and then Jackson took a nap. I took a nap, pumped some more, and got the house in order for my parents who were on their way. We had to go to the hospital by 6 to get the antibiotic IV so Casey and Brady came over to watch Jackson until my parents arrived. By that point, my contractions were picking up and making me quite uncomfortable, but I still wished I could have stayed home a little longer.
We checked in and were immediately escorted to our room. The L&D floor wasn’t busy and I felt like everyone was waiting for my arrival! Jenny came shortly after and dimmed the lights, turned on my iPod playlist, and got Serenity defusing in the room while I got my IV. Once it was done, we started walking. I ate a popcicle. I sat on the birth ball awhile. Kevin was making jokes. The atmosphere was very peaceful and calm.
By 8:15 my doula, Angela arrived. She got a rice sock for my back and I leaned against Kevin. Next I transitioned to my hands and knees. Beth mentioned that the baby was posterior so I wanted to work thru the Miles Circuit to get him in a good position and help my pelvis open.
At 9:06 Angela encouraged me to sit on the toilet for a while. This brings on really strong contractions. I ate ice chips to cope with the pain and tried to release tension in my shoulders. Around 9:30 we went on a short walk, however I was too nauseous and uncomfortable to continue. Contractions were very frequent. My midwife, Damara arrived at 9:45.
At 10, We went back to the room and I laid on the bed on my side for what seemed like a very long time. I may have fallen asleep for a few minutes. I was starting to get weepy and sad and VERY thirsty. I drank some Gatorade and regained some of my energy. I was definitely going thru transition!
At 10:40 Angela encouraged me to sit on the toilet again since that is where I made the most significant progress earlier. Kevin sat in front of me so I could lean on him. I only made it a few contractions when I start to get very serious and ask if I could start pushing soon. I was ready to be done! They ask me to try 3 more contractions and by 10:55 the delivery team was helping me move into the bed to push. They ask me what position I want to be in, and I ask for the squat bar, but shortly after decide to sit in a semi-reclined position.
I remember “Holy” by The City Harmonic playing. I begin to feel panicky. I knew my body was bearing down to push Will out, but my emotions were very fearful and anxious about pushing. I was having a hard time focusing to hold my knees back and push. Luckily, it didn’t last long and after only a few pushes, at 11:02 pm Baby Will was born! He weighed 7 lbs, 2 oz and was 21 inches long.
They laid him on my chest and I held on to him so tightly because I was still a little bit in shock from the pushing. I didn’t want anyone touching me or poking at me. He was very sweet and cuddly and started nursing right away!
This birth experience was so different from Jackson’s birth. Instead of just “surviving” through each contraction, I felt like I was able to focus and work through each one. During the hardest points of labor I tried to relax, vocalize all the pain out of my body, and remember that Jesus was with me, bringing an end to my pain for good. I am so thankful for a great birth team who helped me achieve the birth I wanted, despite the circumstances.
Kevin and I love our sweet, calm, second baby boy. Welcome to the world, Baby Will! Life is great!