Scarlett's birth story:
I woke on Saturday morning...my actual due date with some contractions at about 3:45 am. I sat down at the computer to time them for a few minutes and realized that they were about 6 minutes apart. I decided to call my mom and my best friend Stephanie (who was coming to help with Savannah). It was raining outside a terrible storm and I wanted to make sure they had enough time to get to me. The night before we had sent Jackson to spend the night at his grandparents. I had been having some contractions on Friday afternoon and evening and had a feeling things might pick up after I had gotten a little sleep. I was very grateful that he was already with them and being taken care of...one less thing to take care of in labor.
This is EXACTLY...EXACTLY how Jackson's labor started. I had contractions the night before that stalled out and I went to bed waking up at the same exact times. The difference this time is that I was frustrated and grumpy last night and didn't want my mom to come over...mainly b/c she has already been here thinking I was in labor earlier in the week.
Stephanie- alias the wonderful doula for Savannah- arrived at 4:30 am and my mom- arrived at 5 am... Joe was up and fixing a snack...and Stephanie made a snack for me as well. I woke Savannah up at around 5:30 to get ready and get dressed. I whispered to her "I think Scarlett is going to be born today" and she popped her head right up. She was so excited. Soon my friend and photographer, Tracey, arrived to join us...she had a long drive from Cumming and would be photographing the birth.
There was tons of laughter- focusing on fun not the contractions- and around 6:15 am we decided since I was contracting every 3 minutes or so that we may need to call the midwife to alert her. Susan, the wonderful midwife we all wanted was not the one on call but had said she would try to come to the birth. She was unsure if she could come when we called initially since she had company in town- but she called back and said she would meet us there.
We left for the hospital at 6:45 am. It appeared that Scarlett would be arriving on her due date (only 4% of women actually give birth on their due date!). We arrived at the hospital at 7 am. They put me on the monitor to see how Scarlett was doing before Susan arrived. Scarlett was non reactive...still sleeping in evidently...so juice and some talking to Scarlett ensued.
Susan - the wonderful midwife- arrived and offered an exam...I didn't really feel the need because I had a feeling I was only about 5 cm but Scarlett (as she had been for several weeks) was making it difficult for Susan to determine the position of the baby. We could either pull out the ultrasound machine or just do a quick exam and make sure she was head down.
Julie said she thought she was about half way done- and the exam showed she was 5 cm at 7:42 am. It was so calm and peaceful as it rained outside...Savannah sat on the sofa with Stephanie and played her leapster or read a book. Tracey sat in the corner in the rocker just being still and watching and waiting. Mom and I talked with our awesome nurse Kathy and answered all her questions for my chart. Joe waited patiently for me to need his support.
My contractions strengthened and my thighs burned. This has been how all my labors have been. I feel most of my pain in my thighs...like your doing some serious squats. I had Joe rub the top of my thighs during a contraction and the pain would melt. I felt like each contraction only lasted about 20 seconds because his massage worked so well to relieve the pain. I would lean over the bed with each contraction, him rubbing my legs and me moaning through each one. Then I'd stand back up and chat and laugh and tell stories of previous births and truly enjoy the company of each and every person in the room with me.
I started getting tired and decided to climb up into the bed to kneel and lean on the back of the bed. I rested there and actually took a small nap for about 15-20 minutes. (each of my labors has included a short nap...lol...i need my rest) I woke and everyone agreed that things were getting close...sounding transitional in my sounds around 9:45 am. Savannah wrote me a note at one point that said "Mommy that one was loud"...speaking of the noise I made during that contraction.
My sister Jami was on her way...she hadn't been at Savannah or Jackson's birth and I really wanted her to be there. How could I have a baby without Jami for the third time!? Maybe my mind was holding back the birth so she could make it.
At 10:06 am my pants came off- now those of you who know me know that when I take my pants off we are getting close. (I don't like to wear a gown...I just labor in some yoga pants and whatever shirt I am wearing...but getting close I get hot and take off the pants.) My water was still intact and I was "talking" to my bag of waters "release...please release"...I just wanted to go ahead and have a baby and knew that would speed the process along. At 10:58 am after being frustrated that my water had still not broken asked for Susan to do so. She did so but nothing really came out b/c Scarlett's head was so far down. My mom gloved up and then Susan recommended a few things to help keep me from tearing to my mom who was getting ready to catch her granddaughter. Mom put her hand over my perineum and offered firm support and soon a head filled up her hand... and at 11:11 am Scarlett arrived- with one hand up by her head waving- a cord loosely around her neck- and huge.
My mom had sworn I wouild have a baby as large as I was (8 lb 11 oz) and I just didn't think she could be right. But in fact...she was...a full pound and 2 ounces bigger than Jackson...my biggest so far. She came out crying - even before her whole body had been born... earning her APGARs of 9 and then 9! I gave birth on her knees so after her head and shoulders were born and the cord untangled from her, mom lifted Scarlett up between my legs and I pulled the rest of her body out myself.
She weighed in at 8 pounds 13 ounces and was 21 3/4 inches long with a 14 inch head and chest. She is beautiful. Nice and plump- ruddy complexion like her sister was- with medium brown hair.
Savannah did so great at the birth. She said after the birth "I can't believe I'm going to do that some day." and she also said as Scarlett was being born "A whole new person is in the world."
It was a magical day with those I love surrounding me. I was not afraid but embraced it and truly enjoyed my birth. I am so grateful!