He came very quickly:
Sept. 14th 2012, Friday at 10:30pm, after 1 1/2 hours of labor! 20 1/2 inches long, 13 inch head, 7lbs 4oz. I'll just say it was very intense, but I feel great - just one teeny 1st degree tear that didn't need any stitches. I will tell the whole story soon, but here is a picture:
As of Friday I was 38w6d along. That morning, DH got a ride into work. The kids and I hung out at home in the morning until about 10am, when we drove our car to the shop. We dropped it off there to get the water pump replaced and walked to the McDonald's next door. It was after breakfast hours and I threw any paleo meal requirements out the window and got a Big Mac meal. We ate, the kids played for a while, and I decided we'd walk the mile home instead of getting a ride or a bus. Our car wouldn't be ready for several hours.
It was a cloudy day and it wasn't super hot, so I really enjoyed the walk. The kids complained about having to walk at first but surprisingly they didn't ask to stop 10 times along the way. We did make one stop at a food mart about half way home, to get some electrolyte drinks. When we got home I was fairly tired out, so I lay in bed and napped for about an hour. When I woke up I still lounged in bed and did some reading, and was planning the rest of the day. I'd get a ride to the car when it was ready. Then I'd go on the hunt for some motherwort tincture. Eventually the shop called and at about 3:30pm we got a ride from our neighbor down the hall. We picked up the car and headed to the HFS about 2 miles down the road. Sadly they didn't have any motherwort tincture, so I bought a box of RRL since I was out. I'd been taking 5W (contains red raspberry, squawvine, Dong quai, butcher's broom, black cohosh) since 34 weeks. I'd also been drinking RRL tea but very sporadically. I was suddenly drawn to the idea of motherwort tincture after reading about it earlier in the week - it had a long history of being used in pregnancy, labor, and postpartum. It could help ease anxiety in that last stretch before the baby was born, regulate contractions in labor, and ease afterpains among other benefits. What sounded most appealing to me was the anxiety relief. Even though I was looking forward to meeting my LO, I was considerably anxious about the birth process - even though I'd done it twice before. When I didn't find the tincture at this HFS, we headed to another HFS the next town over. I happily found some, and we got a few random items including snacks for the kids and some water. We drove to DH's work and parked, waiting for his shift to end. While waiting I decided to go ahead and take some motherwort tincture....so I added the drops to my water bottle and drank it down.
Since the one mile walk earlier in the day, I was feeling a bit crampy in my back and upper legs. So when DH got to the car, I told him he needed to drive. He didn't tell me this until the next day but he said when I got out of the car, he noticed immediately that the baby had dropped. We were both too tired to cook dinner so we stopped at the grocery store to get some fried chicken and potato salad from the deli and a few other random items we needed. When we got home we all sat down and ate. Afterwards, I went to my room and lay down. I was just so exhausted and the crampiness was increasing. I felt very much like I do before my period begins. I also noticed I was having some contractions but they were a lot like the prodromal labor I'd been having for the past 3 weeks. I had the motherwort tincture sitting near the bed and decided to take one more dose. I had only gotten 3 hours sleep the night before so I drew a hot bath with epsom salts and soaked for a while, hoping I could relax and have a nap or early bedtime. But soon it dawned on me that these contractions may be the real thing, as they were becoming obviously regular and were most definitely more painful/intense even though I was soaking in a nice relaxing bath. I'd say it was about 9pm when active labor truly began. That's when I noticed the contractions were about 5 to 8 minutes apart, lasting about a minute.
I got out of the bath and was laughing to myself thinking, of course its labor - I'd been worrying since my insomnia issues began that I'd go into labor on a few hours of sleep. I lay in bed and rested between contractions, which I was now having to breathe through. At about 9:30 the contractions were about 3 minutes apart and it was too painful to lay down anymore. I opened the door of my bedroom and told my husband I thought it was time, and told him to help me straighten up the bedroom and our bathroom since its where I'd be the whole time. I went back and forth from sitting on the toilet to a hands and knees position near my bed. I was so tired, so I did try laying down one more time but the contractions were too painful. Suddenly I started panicking, and I also felt like I was going to throw up. I got a bucket and kept it near me. I told DH to call the midwife, and he did and then came and told me she had just delivered a baby and had another mom's water break. She also had failed to get us the birth supplies list for our home birth, so we really didn't have a lot of supplies on hand. For these reasons, she requested we go to the birth center and my husband agreed. I was very angry at him for agreeing to this, and I flat out refused. I continued to labor on hands and knees and was starting to vocalize and was crying a little as the contractions had become extremely painful. I noticed on the toilet the tiniest bit of blood. I also decided to check myself and could feel baby's head about 2 inches in! DH came back into the bedroom and said that he and the kids were ready to take me to the birth center. I was in the middle of a contraction and grunted/roared to my DH, "Noo no no no no!" I told him he could call my mom to come over if *he* needed her, since she was a nurse. That was a little after 10pm. He said he recognized my pushing stage noises (very low noises/roaring/mooing sounds) and realized we weren't going anywhere. He called my mom to come over. He got the kids out of the bedroom and let me be. My contractions were on top of each other and I won't lie, they were so painful. I was thinking to myself that I would never ever have another child after this one! I felt an incredible urge to push, even in between contractions. I was in so much pain I just felt I had to get this baby out as soon as possible. I pushed 3 or 4 times and out came baby's head! I was holding his head and yelling DH's name about 5 times before he heard me through the door. He came in and on my next contraction I pushed with all my might and out came the rest of baby - along with a gush of fluid as my water had not broken beforehand. I felt so relieved. I had been on hands and knees, so DH held the baby while I turned around, and then he handed him to me. My carpet was a mess of blood and fluid and I didn't care. I looked to make sure we really had a boy, and it was and I said, "Hi Benji" and I felt so ecstatic and just held him close to me. We remembered to look at the clock and he was born at 10:30pm. I cried and laughed and just held him and stared at him while DH looked for a bowl for the placenta. While he was doing that the midwife called and asked where we were. I said, at home - baby is here. She didn't know when she would be able to arrive as she was at the center with another laboring mother and she said she'd call back. My mother arrived and helped us tie off the cord and DH cut it. I lay down and Benji latched on really well right away, so I just stayed in bed with him cuddled close and nursed and we all admired him until the midwife arrived. She basically did the weighing, measure, newborn exam, and examined me for tears (only one tiny one that didn't need a stitch). She did the birth cert paperwork and then was on her way. I am very happy I refused to get in the car and go to the birth center - little Benji would have been born in the car or maybe even the parking lot!
Edited by Worldshakerz - 9/16/12 at 9:33am