On Monday 8/4, I went to the mw for an appointment, I was almost 41 weeks. My blood pressure was high, 145/90. It had slowly been creeping up over the past 2 weeks. But there was no protein in my urine or anything else that might indicate pre-e, it was just hypertension, likely from late pregnancy. She called the consulting Dr., and he said he would recommend induction. I didn't want induction, so we came up with a plan that I'd take home a bp monitor and check it at home and if it stayed lower it was ok, I would come back Wed. for another visit. She also swept my membranes a little.
Fear of induction is a powerful motivator. I had my friend who is a masseuse come over that evening and work on my pressure points, Nate also gave me a nice long back rub. That night, we went to bed around 10, and by 11, I was having contractions that I had to get up and move around through. I waited about an hour, then woke Nate up. We started timing them, and they were 6-7 minutes apart by 2 am, so we called the mw. At 3 am, she said to head to the hospital.
Around 4 am, we arrived at the hospital. I was indeed in labor, but they said I was only 2.5 cm dilated and the contractions, though 3 min apart, weren't regular enough, so they encouraged me to walk around for a couple hours then come back for a check.
I was freezing. We didn't bring a sweater or anything, so we ended up going, ugh, to WalMart when I was in labor to buy a sweater. Labor in WalMart at 5am is...not aweseome! I did buy a box of tic tacs that kept me sane for the next 1.5 hrs though. Focus on mint and shaking the little box. So, walking around kind of sucked. I had no sleep for 2 days, and I was doubting my ability to go into full blown labor so tired. Walking I couldn't find an inner focus to get my mind out of/into it either.
We got back to L/D and they checked me, I was at 5.5 cm, and fully effaced, the nurse said, want to try the tub? I hopped in!
The tub. Saved my day. Seriously. From the moment I was in, I could focus on my body, and the lack of gravity let me float and relax and breathe into myself and actually visualize the opening, baby moving down, and relaxation.
I got into a zone. I was in my head and out of it at the same time. I let my body tell me what to do and kept thinking about "relaxing my bottom" and "smiling" to relax those muscles. I made noise. MmmMMmmmaaa, Waaaaa, Maaaahaaaa...anything that came out I went with it. It was crazy, like it wasn't even me chosing the sounds.
Time warp, no idea how much time passed, but I labored like this, with my husband with me, holding my hand, and the nurse intermittantly coming by to check on baby with a Doppler. I had one dose of the antibiotics for GBS, but hardly noticed since she put the IV on the back of my forearm and it was out of the way.
Then. I started feeling pushy. I remember my body sort of involuntarily jerking. At one point I think I got a bit scared and asked for the midwife. Heidi, the midwife arrived.
A few pushy parts later, I reached down and touched my bag of waters and I think I broke them myself because I felt an explosion.
Then, the contractions strengthened. I got more in my zone.
Pushy-ness continued and I totally relaxed between contractions to the point that I could hear my mw and nurse saying they thought I was asleep between contractions. I wasn't asleep, I could hear them but they seemed literally, 1,000 miles away.
Then, the baby was Right There. I could feel a smidge of her head. Pushing took a LOT of work. I have no idea how long I pushed. But it seemed like it took a while, yet no time at all.
Then. One big push. And her head came halfway out. Halfway. Then the contraction stopped. And I had to wait. This I think was the craziest part, waiting to be able to push her out finally. Then. It came, and I felt rubbery and burning, and pain, but no pain. And I yelled and she felt like she squirmed into the world. I reached down and finally met my baby. She was all purple and covered in wax and crying and so perfect I cried too. And I just laid there, amazed that I DID it. I birthed my baby in the water, all us. It was I think, the coolest moment in my life. It makes me cry now too.
And I gave her to her dad and we just were.
Then, out of the water. Placenta, stitches, just being with the new baby for a few hours. Amazing stuff.
Honestly, I can't wait to do it again some day. I'm sore down there, and even with the "perfect" breathing, waiting to push til baby was right there, etc. I still tore a 2nd degree tear, but hey, it isn't that bad.