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Mothering › Mothering Forums › Archives › Pregnancy and Birth Archives › Due Date Clubs 2009 - 2012 › August 2009 › The precipitous, home, water birth of Amelia Padma Stuart with birth photography and video:)
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The precipitous, home, water birth of Amelia Padma Stuart with birth photography and video:)

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 
Was that title descriptive enough? I wanted to actually share my birth story with you all, so I have included all the professional birth photos and the video as well

Sunday morning I woke up at 5:45am with a few contractions. They were stronger than brackston hicks but still not quite the real thing.

Monday morning, three days before my due date, I woke up again at 5:45am but with no contractions. I put on my hypnobabies Early First Stage to get back to sleep. I dreamt I was talking to a father of toddler twins, and I was having a strong contraction and he was excited that I was in labor. I woke up then (at 7:30am) and just knew that I was, in fact, in labor.

I went to the bathroom, got back into bed and just noticed them for ten minutes or so. Then I went into our office and told Adam that he better cancel his appointments for the day. He was so excited! I got back in bed and just noticed and timed the contractions. They were 8 minutes apart, and manageable.

Early labor video 1
Early labor video 2

I spent the next couple hours walking around and having the contractions. I called the midwife and the birth photographer to tell them to both get ready. My contractions really were manageable and okay. I had been pretty nervous about handling the pain during this labor as Elijah's homebirth was so painful and I was worried that it would be the same.

Our birth in photos by a professional photographer

The birth photographer arrived around 11am (thus begins our story in photos), and I tried to make her comfortable. But then, the contractions started to get a lot stronger. I ran the bath, hoping that would help as it did during Elijah's labor. It just felt much better to walk around during this labor, so I got back out.

The midwife arrived around noon and told us that the house smelled of gas (not a good thing to tell me since I worry a lot about that kind of thing). I had been upset all week of my midwife's perception of how I handle pain (my impressions was that she thought I could not do it and she had actually suggested I consider going to the hospital and getting an epidural the week before). I am not sure if it was just a coincidence, or if there was something psychological that happened when she arrived, but I started asking to go to the hospital so that I could get an epidural right after she arrived.

She checked me, and I was only at 6cm. I could not imagine going through hours more of this. The pain had suddenly gone from a 7 to a 10 and I could not stand it at all. It was incredibly unbearable, and yet somehow I kept getting through each one.

The week before I had spoken with my midwife about how to signal if I really did want to go to the hospital, and had told her that I would get dressed and walk out the door. No one seemed to be taking me seriously, so I put on a dress and started to walk downstairs. I got as far as the office, and the other midwife checked me again. I think she told me I was 8 or 9cm at that point.

I honestly thought she was straight up lying. The other midwife had checked me not even ten minutes earlier and I was at 6cm. How does one go from 6cm to 9cm in less than ten minutes?

I started to walk downstairs while everyone was telling me that if I did go to the hospital I would not have time for an epidural and I could likely have the baby in the car. I just did not believe them, I thought they were trying to trick me.

The second midwife brought out a birthing stool and told me she wanted to check me one more time before the hospital. I agreed, and the contractions were just a tiny bit more manageable on the stool. She told me I was just about 10cm with just a lip left. Yea right! Barely a half hour had passed since 6cm. Still, I trusted her more and agreed to get back in the tub and see.

So, we went upstairs, Adam got in the tub with me, and I just got really quiet and went inside. The birth video actually looks peaceful. I had just a few more contractions in the tub just waiting to feel that infamous need to push, and it never really came. I asked the midwife to check again, and she said I could push if I wanted to. So, I did. I pushed once and could feel her head come down. It hurt so much so I pushed again and gave it all I had and out came the head! Once the head was out, I knew that the hardest part was over. I gave myself a little break until the next contraction and then pushed the rest of her body out into her daddy's hands. It was such a relief!

She started screaming as soon as her mouth hit air and she went straight into my arms. She was covered in vernex and was so pink and loud! She was perfect.

We waited a minute and I tried to include Elijah in the moment, then we went into the bedroom to deliver the placenta. All was well. The after contractions hurt much more than they did with Elijah, but any pain was better than that half hour of going from 6cm to 10cm. Amelia latched on about an hour after birth and has been breastfeeding like a champ every since! She was 7lbs 2oz and 19 3/4". Almost exactly the same as Elijah was.

The midwife had to count her birth as precipitous as I went from 5cm to 10 in about 2 hours...(I think it was shorter than that, but she is counting from when she is guessing I was at 5cm).

She is now 9 days old and just gorgeous and getting chubby. She is the calmest, happiest baby I could ever imagine. She started sleeping through the night right away and she has long periods of wakefulness during the day where she just looks around peacefully and then nurses. She can even burp on her own laying down! How did I get such an easy baby?

Here are some recent photos of her.

Elijah is just in love with her. He comes home from school every day and asks "How is the baby doing?" and then he holds her for awhile. I am doing well, too. No tearing, no swelling, nothing. I felt better one day post partum than I did in my whole third trimester.

Overall, I am happy I did the homebirth, but the pain really was too much. I honestly think I will do a hospital birth next time, I just can't imagine going through that again We'll see, though, as there is some kind of hormone post partum that makes you forget how painful it really was.... People who watch Elijah's birth video say I look so much calmer and in control, but that was just the pushing stage. I could do that again, but the dialating so quickly felt like too much.
post #2 of 4
Congrats! What a great birth (and birth photo montage)!

And I agree... fast dilation just isn't much fun on the inside. I was dilating a cm every 15 minutes and if someone told me that would happen for sure in my next birth I'd be signing up for pain meds as soon as the HPT was positive!

But you held on and DID IT! Congrats! :
post #3 of 4
Congratulations!!! The pictures are AMAZING!!!
post #4 of 4
not in your ddc...but had to click! congrats mama!!! wonderful beautiful pictures!
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