My water broke at 4:45 am on Wednesday morning. I was thrilled since I was over a week late at that point! The contractions were mild until around noon, when I started having to really focus and breathe through them. I labored at home for quite a while, using my birth ball and Hypnobabies techniques, until the contractions got really tough and we decided to head to our birth center.
A combination of a posterior baby and a posterior cervix made the birth slow and excruciating. My midwife would hold my cervix in a better position for 4-5 contractions, then let me labor. Even though we did this several times, it always slipped back and I'd actually lose a few centimeters of dilation. I tried to relax and work with my body, assuming that with time I'd progress, but it became pure agony and I was discouraged that the attempts to move the cervix kept failing. Also, although the contractions were very strong, they weren't getting much closer together.
At this point, I decided to transfer to the hospital. I'd been saying that for a while, out of sheer pain and desperation, but at this point I really meant it. I was a bit disappointed in myself - I had put a lot of effort into preparing for a natural birth, and I couldn't help but feel like a failure for happily accepting all the interventions I was previously against. But, I'm a pretty go-with-the-flow person so I didn't mind the change of plans too much. The epidural helped me relax and a touch of Pitocin made the contractions more regular. Lila was born at 1:17 am after an hour and a half of pushing. There was meconium in the water so she was quickly taken to the warmer to be checked out, but she was perfectly fine so within minutes I had her skin to skin on my chest. She immediately grabbed my thumb and squeezed tight! I couldn't believe she'd just come out of me, even though I'd seen it for myself!
Even though my birth was the opposite of what I envisioned, I am still very happy with my experience and glad for all the choices I made. I'd heard so many hospital horror stories, especially in natural birth circles, but everything went smoothly for me and I don't regret transferring. I do wonder what would have happened if I'd stayed at the birth center, but I guess I'll never know and I'm okay with that. My little girl is gorgeous and healthy and I can't believe she's really here!