My birth story - better late than never
Here is my birth story finally--I lost my mucous plug on a Tuesday, had lots of early labour irregular type contractions for the rest of the week. On Sunday morning (January 13th) this is what happened:
8:30 a.m. I woke up and saw some bloody show, had a strong contraction. Woke up dh and said I think we might be having this baby today. Dh went back to bed and I stayed up with dd1 and got her breakfast.
9:00 a.m. I called my mom to pick up dd1. I said there's no way things will be happening so fast so it's not necessary to take us to the hospital yet. After I hang up the phone I feel the contractions getting more zingy and painful. I get dd1 to take the hot water bottle to dh and ask him to fill it up and come to me. Dh comes and finds me on the livingroom floor, unable to get up. My contractions are getting stronger and I have to breathe through them. My mom picks up dd1, my dad was supposed to watch her while my mom came with us to the hospital, but we thought it would be later. So my dad leaves to go out.
9:30 a.m. By this time my contractions are four minutes apart.
9:40 a.m. Contractions three minutes apart. It's hard to talk through them and I have to breathe. I call my midwife and we agree to meet at the hospital for 10:30 a.m. I ask dh to call the doulas and ask my mom to return to take us to the hospital (dh doesn't drive). Things are getting stronger.
9:50 a.m. Contractions are two minutes apart. I start moaning like Frankenstein
and dh calls an ambulance at about 10:15 a.m. on his own volition because my mom said she'll be delayed as my dad went out, and things are realy picking up. I am on the floor focused on the intensity of my labour. While dh is on the phone with the operator I am moaning away and feel my body pushing. "I'm pushing!!" I shout. The ambulance dispatcher asks dh if he can see the head crowning. I'm laughing to myself thinking dh will have to deliver this baby on the livingroom floor and he's probably freaking out!
How cool that would be, though!
10:30 a.m. The ambulance gets a bit lost, they finally arrive, they can't get the gurney up the elevator so they leave it in the lobby of our condo. When the EMS staff arrive I'm having difficulty getting up off the floor but they insist that I walk down the hall, take the elevator to get to the gurney. When we arrive in the lobby I have a huge contraction and my water breaks all over the floor and on dh's pants/legs. "Argh! My water broke!"
At that point I didn't care, I was too busy having a baby! They put me on the gurney and take me out - so fargin' uncomfortable, bumping along. I am having contractions one on top of the other and urges to push that are like a reflex. "I'm pushing!!!" The ambulance attendant tells me, "Don't push!" "How?" "You should know, you've had a baby before." "My other birth was different!!!" She showed me how to blow air out like I was blowing up a balloon to redirect the impulse. I was blowing up 50,000 balloons, let me tell you. So this is why people have home births, I was thinking, it's so bloody uncomfortable to be transporting in transition!
11:00 a.m. we arrive at the hospital. The elevator is out of service because there's a fire alarm. The midwives, doulas and my mom are there. I'm thinking "I'm gonna have this baby in the hallway!" Finally the security guy overrides the elevator and up we go.
11:08 a.m. My midwife checks the baby's heartrate and tells me it's all good to go with pushing. I am lying on my right side (feels right) and just GOING with the contractions. My body just did the work for me mostly. Letting my body just do it's thing and surrendering to the process was amazing. My body pushing the baby by itself felt good, almost like a sneeze, an impulse, a reflex. The doulas provided counterpressure to my feet, legs and knees so I could push my baby out better. They all chanted words of encouragement and when I moaned like a banshee or ROARED as I was pushing they all encouraged me, said "Yes!" and "Good!" The encouragement was there between and during each contraction. The doulas helped me stay focused and just riding one wave at a time. It was such a good birth.
It took me twenty minutes to push dd2 out. When it was over I couldn't believe how quickly everything had gone and how good it went. At 11:30 a.m. she was born and they put her right on my chest after she slid out of my womb. She was all warm and soft and adorable. It was so amazing.
Such a different experience than my birth with dd1 which was traumatic and horribly painful (home birth/hospital transport/being silenced by my midwife/2 hrs of pushing on my back/feeling like I was dying/episiotomy and third degree tear/meconium/baby suctioning). This felt amazing. I felt like I could do it all again (-almost-
). Because of dd1's birth I decided I would ask for the epidural this time if I wanted it, and when I was lying on the floor in the livingroom I was telling dh I wanted it, but everything happened so fast that there wasn't time to get it! In the end it all worked beautifully. I tore again this time but much less than before (2nd degree) incl some skid marks by my urethra.
It was a very healing birth. I felt high for days after! I think the encouragement of my doulas made a huge difference psychologically in my comfort, and being able to just do what my body needed to do. What an experience.
I am still working on the photos and will try to post some soon.