My last birth ended up being very very quick. My water broke, 15 minutes later contractions begun in full force, and an hour & a half after that I was holding my new daughter in my arms. We had a planned homebirth (2nd time around) but the speed of the birth left us unattended for it. My body did the pushing for me (I was in a birth tub), her head came out and sat there for about a minute or so, then I pushed the rest of her out. My dh lifted her to my chest and she looked perfect - totally pink in color and clean. But the thing is, she didn't cry or open her eyes. She looked like she was completely asleep and was limp. Well, in the heat of this unexpected moment, I decided that he better cut the cord so he could move her out of the tub where I was hoping the cooler air would get her to take a breath (in retrospect I suppose I should have thought to let her keep breathing through the cord, but that didn't occur to me in the moment for some reason). So he cut the cord, moved her to the floor on top of a towel and began trying to stimulate her. He's a firefighter/paramedic, but that night he was just a dad who had just had an unplanned U/C birth and was pretty panicky. He never thought to check her pulse or to see if she was indeed breathing. He just rubbed her down, flicked her feet, and talked to her trying to get her to breathe. I was completely calm the whole time just sitting there in the tub watching, wanting to ask him to verify her sex but thinking I'd better wait until she started breathing. I knew she'd be fine, but he was scared. Looking back, I can't help but wonder what was actually going on with her. I had one person tell me that they heard when a baby is born that quickly they can sometimes be knocked out by the experience. Being that her color was excellent I'm not really concerned that she was being oxygen deprived (she never started to turn blue), but I just want to know. Could she have simply been sleeping??? Is it possible? She was an excellent sleeper for the first 3 months, so maybe??? I'm really interested to hear what people - especially birth attendants who've witnessed something like this - think! I know it's all speculation at this point but I'd still love to hear.
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5/19/04 at 12:08pm