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Mothering › Mothering Forums › Archives › Pregnancy and Birth Archives › Due Date Clubs 2009 - 2012 › March 2010 › Yes, My Body Can : The Birth of Hazel Jane (L.O.N.G.)
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Yes, My Body Can : The Birth of Hazel Jane (L.O.N.G.)

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 
I've been trying to think of what to title Hazel's birth. For some reason this has really held me up on getting everything even recorded. Well.. that and processing through the experience... I feel like I experienced a lifetime in a couple of hours.

Eventually, I decided on "Yes, My Body Can" for a myriad of reasons.

Pregnancy is good to my body. I've told just about everybody I meet this fact. My body just handles it well... in fact, I was often told that I really did 'glow' througout. I gained nothing in weight (possibly two or three pounds, but it would all depend upon the time of day I was weighed), but was able to remain quite healthy and always active. I could paint my toenails (and did!) even at over 40 weeks pregnant, I worked until they found a replacement for me at the coffee shop, I walked, I sewed, I kept up with the three children already on the outside.

But going into labor on my own? It was something my body had never done. I'd been induced in the hospital with each of my three previous pregnancies/births. This time, I was seeing a midwife though, so that form of induction simply wasn't a possibility.

I tried to make conditions opitmal for birth through Evening Primrose Oil, Gentle Birth Formula, Red Raspberry Leaf tea and a few other things. Did they work? Maybe, maybe not. I can't be exactly sure since nothing officially and absolutely triggered things to happen.

Thursday, March 4th, was a rough day for me. I was emotionally exhausted. I was grouchy, I was bitter, I was mean, I couldn't really deal with anything. And I cried over it.

I went to dinner with my mom and kids and then she invited them over to spend the night. The next day, I woke up with the husband already at work and I didn't really do a whole lot at all, but did enjoy some quiet time.


After the husband got off of work, we went on a walk. During the walk, it felt like there was some leaking going on. Not a lot, but certainly *something* going on. I figured maybe the outer bag of waters had broken (though I'm not certain of that now). I didn't call the midwife though because nothing else was happening. .. So, we picked up the girls from my mom's house, headed home.. and then eventually began to get ready for the soup supper at church that evening. Right before leaving, I decided to use the toilet... again.. for the millionth time... and there was bloody show in some mucus. I told dh that I was going to call the midwife... because all along the thought of driving 2.5 hours was a bit terrifying considering labor *could* be fast. She thought we should probably head up.

We gathered our stuff (it was quite funny.. dh was in a panic... I was the epitome of calm, which is a complete role reversal from normal), got the girls to my parents' house, and headed north.

I drove. I wanted to. It helped me focus. During the drive, we luckily didn't see many deer (it was dark... we were on the road by... 6:45 p.m. or so), and I did feel some contractions. Nothing painful, but consistent around 10 or so minutes apart (some a bit more, some a bit less).

We got to the midwives' house, unloaded and settled in for the night. I was offered a check if I wanted.. and I was curious.. and I was dilated to about 2cm and 75% effaced. I was glad *something* was happening.

Through the night I continued to have contractions, but nothing that really needed too much focus. But I really wasn't able to sleep.

By morning things were more intense. We went out to breakfast... every time I moved from one position to another (i.e. laying down to sitting... or sitting to standing) I would get a really big and hard contraction (regardless of when the last one occurred). It sucked.

I labored hard from around 7:30 a.m. onward... the contractions were close and big. I was 4-5 cm in the morning, but my cervix was still pointed backward and needed to be aligned better for things to really get going.

And of course it got worse. ... Even around 10 a.m. I began to wonder what on earth I had done to myself, why I had chosen this route. I knew from the birth of my third daughter that I *could* birth without pain medication.. but her labor/birth was amazingly fast.

This was dragging on and on and on.

I paced the room, we walked around the block. Finally ,around 1 p.m. I actually cried during/after a particularly intense contraction. So I went to go lay down. I was exhausted from no sleep the night before and six hours of HARD contractions were wearing me down.

And then of course, things got even worse pain-wise.

I was laying down and now had to actively moan in low tones through the contractions because they were so painful.

I was curious to know of progress... and I was at 9 cm. FINALLY. I had renewed confidence in myself. I WAS ALMOST THERE! I just needed to get through to that last cm and it seemed like I could see the finish line! I could DO this! So, I got out of bed to a standing position to help things along, holding on to the window sill and moaning the low tones through contractions.. though of course those low tones did creep up in tone as things got really, really bad. And then, there would be a short break between contractions and I could even smile.

It was maybe around 3 p.m. that I was finally at a 10 and feeling somewhat pushy... and that's where I think I made my first mistake. I went to lay on the bed. It was the only position I knew for birthing. But, baby-in-my-belly didn't like that... and her heart rate went down to the point that the midwives immediately recommended I sit on a small stool beside the bed and go for that position to push.

I pushed and pushed and... nothing.

I moved to the foot of the bed on the stool. I pushed and pushed and things HURT. They hurt like nothing in my life had ever hurt before. I couldn't stop anything, the contractions kept coming and flooding my senses... And while I thought I was giving things my all, the midwife noted that as I would push, I would actually begin to CLOSE my legs -- completely and utterly counterproductive. So even while I was TRYING to push, I was also TRYING not to let things happen for whatever reason in my head.

Because I was terrified. Terrified of MORE pain, terrified of being split in two, terrified of the unknown, terrified of how long things were taking, terrified that this labor was SO DIFFERENT from the last I had experienced.

I screamed, I yelled, I cursed. During a hard contraction and my pushing, the midwife was trying to help get things moving and pushing around down there and I SCREAMED. Dh later said he doesn't know where the sound came from at all... it was something he had never heard.. and will probably never hear again. A primal sound of terror, pain and everything. I sobbed. I lost it. I was blubbering and bawling and saying I didn't know what else to do... I didn't KNOW how to push this baby out.. I didn't know WHY I was trying to push out the baby all while trying to keep the baby in.... ... I screamed more through the next contraction, but I bore down with all my might.. and the head was descending! I was shown on the mirror the top of the head with so much hair!! ... This somehow lit a tiny spark for me to keep on... Because with the next contraction I screamed again and the head was coming down more! I was encouraged to keep going if I felt the need to... that I was doing an amazing job! I was doing what I was meant to do! ... And then the head was right there... and I had to keep pushing even though I screamed that I couldn't do it .. I didn't WANT to! The pressure was nearly unbearable and I could only imagine what that was going to do to my body because of what I knew would pass through...

And then the head was out. And I had to get the body out... but again did NOT WANT TO. I DIDN'T WANT TO AT ALL.... I know dh was checking out the baby's head and knew what was going on, but I hadn't clue. I couldn't look. I was somewhere else. I wasn't really present at all.

But I did push that body out. I did it.

And the baby was placed upon me and I saw *her*. A baby girl. COVERED in thick, yellow vernix. A lovely shade of purple/blue. An amazing head of hair, thicker than any of her sisters combined.

And I had done it. I had just birthed my fourth child into the world at 4:11 p.m.


I had gone through an emotional valley I didn't even know existed. I felt everything that could ever possibly be felt to a degree of magnification not able to be written. And this all passed through me within hours. A world of emotions in hours.

But I did it. My body did it. My baby did it. We all came together and though I wanted to give up at every turn, I didn't. I couldn't. So I kept going and I did exactly what I was supposed to do.


Dh said I kicked ass and took names. He said my strength, my power, my focus was amazing. He was in awe of me. Though I felt completely defeated at times, he was in awe of me. And it makes me cry even now.

He said he wouldn't change a thing. That this birth changed *him*. That he'd never have it any other way.

And now... I think this birth was exactly what it needed to be. It happened the way she needed to be born.. it happened the way *I* needed to be born... into power, into confidence, into myself.


Hazel Jane
born March 6th, 2010, 4:11 p.m.
8lb 10oz
21.5 inches long
post #2 of 21
What a beautiful birth story. I'm tearing up, here. Congratulations! So amazing.
post #3 of 21
Ok I'm going to go sob now.

Beautifully written, you are amazing!
post #4 of 21
Way to go, Judy. I am all teary-eyed (ok, ok, they're running down my face ) here after reading your story... I feel your strength and power, you did it! CONGRATS, MAMA!
post #5 of 21
Thread Starter 
Thank you, thank you, thank you for sharing in my experience!!!!

This brought me to my lowest low and the highest pinnacle.. and everywhere in between... It was as if I was pulled apart shred by shred and rebuilt into this... woman/mother/embodiment-of-strength. I am a new being entirely.

I don't know if it was the way my husband looked at me afterwards... or the way he recounted the birth experience with me.. the light in his eyes and his view of me? I've never felt that about *myself* but he could see it.

Or maybe.. through him I was able to catch a glimpse of what I can do, what my body can do... and even a glimpse gives me tinglies?

Or maybe it's seeing the most perfect little baby laying in my lap right at this moment?


(I just remembered some details from after the birth to share... but they're not so much on the emotional side.. and they'll wait until tomorrow... they're more fascinating in the geeky/scientific kind of way)


But.. it still makes ME teary-eyed too. And I'm so glad I can share that here.
post #6 of 21
Awesome story!
Welcome Hazel!
post #7 of 21
That was awesome. You are awesome!!

And, can I just say that I can totally relate about pushing? I am not one of those people that like pushing. In fact, I dread it.

Go, mama! You are a rock star!!!
post #8 of 21
awesome birth story! so happy that u were able o go into labor on ur own! completely agree with vegmomma, ur a definite rock star !
post #9 of 21
That's beautiful.
post #10 of 21
I got chills reading your birth story! thank you so much for sharing and for letting all of us be a part of your journey. I have so much appreciated your openness and honesty throughout pregnancy, and I am thrilled you had the birth you have waited so long for.
post #11 of 21
Thanks for sharing your story. It sounds very empowering!

post #12 of 21
What a beautiful story, and journey! I am sure Hazel will love this story when she grows up. I love what you say about your husband looking at you in a new way. It seems like you look at yourself in a new way too.
post #13 of 21
Awwww....mama! That is so exciting!

I'm so excited for you...and it makes me think that maybe I should keep waiting and waiting and maybe, just maybe my body will know what to do and when to do it and I can avoid induction as well.

All my best to your quartet of beatiful girls, mama!!

post #14 of 21
Thanks for the link in the WY tribe thread! What a lovely birth story.

Have I mentioned that I LOVE your dd's name? It's beautiful! And, congratulations again on a wonderful birth. I'm from a family of seven girls, so can totally appreciate that part too. My sisters are still my best friends.

If you haven't seen this book yet - I bet your girls would love it:


My girls love it (we read it at bedtime tonight, it's a favorite) - I got it for my sister when she had her second dd, and then she and I got books for all the rest of our sisters as a Christmas gift.
post #15 of 21
Thread Starter 

It's so wonderful to hear about the joy of a tribe of girls!

I'm glad you love her name My mom's maiden name is Hoesel, and the original German spelling would have had an umlaut over the 'o' and it *almost* kind of comes out like 'Hazel' when pronounced like tht... in fact the North Dakota relatives say it like Hazel... and I just like the name too Jane comes from dh's maternal grandmother, Mary Jane, who passed away nearly eight years ago but would have celebrated her 82nd birthday on March 6th -- the day Hazel was born. So, she carries names from both sides of the families
post #16 of 21
How's it going Judy?!! You seem to still be floating on that baby cloud 9!!

BTW- I've always described myself as CatholicISH which is definitely not as good as CatholicY-your sig cracks me up.
post #17 of 21
Thread Starter 
The birth was amazing. More than I could have ever hoped for... but .. *sigh*... I'm struggling a bit otherwise. Trying to work it all out though. No real time to elaborate.... Hazel needs me.... again.
post #18 of 21
Originally Posted by judybean View Post
The birth was amazing. More than I could have ever hoped for... but .. *sigh*... I'm struggling a bit otherwise. Trying to work it all out though. No real time to elaborate.... Hazel needs me.... again.
sorry to hear you are having a hard time. hang in there!
post #19 of 21
Thread Starter 
Thank you so much for the words of encouragement... it's just hard to be needed ALL THE TIME for nursing. Hazel loves to nurse.... always. If she's awake, she's nursing (or so it seems)... and it's just hard some days. Yesterday was a really hard day for me for some reason... My midwife said hormones and such crash at three days postpartum.. but holy heck, maybe I'm just running behind (haha.. just like her 'overdue' birth?!) and mine seemed to completely crash at nine days pp. I wept for a bit. Because somehow I was feeling like a complete failure to my sweet baby girl.. like she couldn't be a happy, content baby and... somehow that was my fault?! There's no real rhyme or reason to my 'logic' of yesterday because even now, writing it out doesn't seem to quite make sense...

But today is a new day... and I'm trying to make the best of it.
post #20 of 21
What a lovely story! I know I'm really slow in getting to reading it, but reading the March mama birth stories has been something I've been wanting to do, and I especially wanted to read yours since your Hazel and my Laura share a birthday! I really enjoyed reading about Hazel's arrival and I'm so happy for you that it was such an empowering birth
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