Your up for spotlight!!
SPOTLIGHT on AlaskAnne !!!
Sorry it took me so long to post something here - I have just been enjoying being a mama WAY too much! Torin Jasper is an absolute joy and my DH and I are in love.
A little about me, then I'll share his birth story here. My real name is Courtney and my DH and I live in Anchorage, AK in a big fixer upper house that we bought in May. DH grew up here and I moved here permanently in 2003 after a series of college summer jobs got me hooked on Alaska and its amazing natural beauty. For work I'm the Development Director at a small non profit that advocates for renewable energy development here in the state. I'm a licensed attorney but find not practicing law to be much more enjoyable and less stressful. My DH runs the bike and ski shop at our local REI. We're pretty outdoorsy and love to spend time at our cabin, or out on our bikes or skis. We're also both fairly introverted and just like to spend time at our house working on craft projects, reading, watching movies etc.
Torin Jasper was born Sunday morning December 9th at 6:42am. On Saturday night DH and I had returned home from the second part of our birthing from within class and we were just sitting around in the living room talking about the birth and how we were going to handle everything and techniques we would try. We also talked about the house projects and how all that was going to shake out timing wise before the baby’s anticipated arrival on December 28th (we are currently without a master bed or bathroom). I was only just past 37 weeks and i more than expected to go past my due date, so we were shocked when my water broke at 11pm.
At that point i wasn't having any contractions, at most a couple period like cramps that lasted a few seconds. After consulting our instructions from the midwives, we decided that we would get everything ready and then call them in the morning. We scrambled to get all of our bags packed. At that moment I was so happy that I had been so meticulously putting things together for the birth center and keeping lists. DH quickly figured out the car seat. We left everything on the dining room table and went to bed around 12:30am or so.
Around 1 or 1:30am I started to feel what I decided were definitely contractions and I started timing them using my iphone app. They were about a minute long but unevenly spaced and were not that intense that I felt I had to get out of bed. By 2am I was getting out of bed for the contractions and breathing and doing pelvic circles on my birth ball. Eventually I moved out to the living room because I wasn’t getting back into bed for the contractions and I had more space in the living room. I was mostly just using the ball and using breathing at that point, but the contractions were getting pretty intense fast. By 3:15 or 3:30 am or so I woke DH up because I wasn’t able to get through the contractions and time them myself anymore. I was hardly getting a break between them by this point. Maybe a minute and a half or 2 minutes? He started trying the acupressure points and I rejected all of them as worthless except the lower back point, which I relied on him to help me with for the rest of the night.
At some point I got in the shower. I had the birth ball in there with me as well. At this point I think DH realized by looking at what I had been timing that it might be good to call the birth center and the midwife told us to come in. I was WAY into labor land at this point, leaning over my birth ball which was in the shower, with my knees on a towel outside the shower, breathing through them and having DH press into my sacrum. This was really intense. By this point I was pretty out of it and just surviving through each contraction doing deep belly breathing. Between contractions DH was running stuff to the car and coaxing me to put my clothes on. We got to the birth center around 5:40am. Felicity the midwife met us at the door and led us back into the clinic where she wanted to check me. Getting up on the table was an ordeal, and I had to ride out a contraction on the table while she was checking me so she get an accurate measurement. I didn't mind being checked, it was just hell having to go through a contraction on my back!
Then she told us I was at 9 cm dialated. Wow. I’m not sure what emotions I felt when she said that. I think I probably felt shocked and relieved for about a second, before I apparently said, “can I get in the shower now?” Once I was in the shower I put the spray so it was on my back and I could grip the bar. DH pressed on my back through every contraction and kept giving me water to drink. Felicity would come in from time to time and check the baby’s heart rate, which was always good. I labored in the shower for about a half hour total. At some point I started feeling the urge to push, which kind of scared me. I don’t know if it was so much an “urge to push” or just my body was starting to push for me, and kind of asking me to chip in a little to its effort. I started doing about 5 seconds of pushing on each contraction, then I would do that a couple of times on each contraction. Pushing was satisfying and extremely uncomfortable at the same time. The whole thing was also mentally unnerving to the extent I could even wrap my head around it at the time. Between contractions I reached down and I could feel the baby’s head moving further and further down.
When the tub was filled up I got in there and was on my knees leaned over the side of the tub with a towel, doing my breathing through the contractions and pushing a couple times on each contraction. Felicity was telling me that he was getting close and I would need to either get out of the tub or turn over so he would be born into the water. I really did not want to turn over, it sounded awful. But I also did not want to get out of the tub, so I turned over and laid back in the tub. It was about 3 or 4 more contractions until he was born. The next thing I remember is looking down and seeing Torin coming toward me in Felicity’s hands and she put him on my chest. It was surreal to finally SEE him. He was so beautiful and covered in vernix.
I'm so happy with how everything turned out and proud of myself for having a drug free birth. I seriously feel like superwoman! I did tear and had to get a couple of stitches but its not too uncomfortable and I'm not having any other problems. Now just enjoying every moment with this little guy.