I had every confidence in myself and my husband so I wasn't too worried after I got used to the idea.
On January 16, 11 days late and with the help of my dh I delivered a healthy happy baby girl at home. I went 11 days late with dd1 too. The night before I told the baby that it had to come out tonight. I insisted and apparently it worked. Labor started around 3:30 AM after an uncomfortable evening. I woke dh after I couldn't stand the back pain I was having. The whole labor was very strange and completely different from my first. All my pain was in a band across my lower back and into my hips. It wasn't until I was complete that I felt pain where you would think labor pain would be....the abdomen and in the birth canal and I wouldn't even call that "pain".
My water hadn't broken yet and I labored in the tub for nearly the whole time. Dh kept checking my progress (which caused stronger contractions!) and when I seemed to not move past 8 despite feeling pushy, I got out of the tub to use the bathroom. I think that helped because when I got back into the tub and felt pushy again, my water broke as I tried to breath through a pushy spell. My dh asked if I was sure and I said yes, I'm sure. I just had a whirlpool between my legs. Every other contraction I felt like pushing. My water broke at about 6am. After the fact I wondered if I felt so pushy because my body was trying to break my bag of waters. I was so happy when it broke because I knew it wouldn't be too much longer. Soon the contractions seemed to just continue into one another. My dh thought they were getting slower but he didn't know until I told him after that they were one continuous one with spikes. I got through the pain by looking into dh's eyes and listening to the noise my ring made on the tub while I tapped my hand on the side of the tub as I breathed through the waves. I also was drawing from some books that I had read about lowering your voice and visualizing my cervix opening all the way. I was chanting "open".
I labored another hour + in the tub until I felt like I had to move and get out to push the baby out. The pain in my hips and back was unbearable.
I got out of the tub and layed on the bed. I could hardly stand the pain. When I laid down, I shifted on my back to my side and closed my legs. I just needed a second of relief. My dh said that the baby wouldn't come out with my legs closed. Oh, really!? Even pushing wasn't a relief. The baby was right there and ready to come. I didn't realize how close she was because dh didn't really communicate that. He was busy scrambling for towels for when the baby came. In one push her head was down where I could feel it. Dh had a private panic moment because when he saw the head, he saw a white cord looking thing across the top of her head. He thought it was the cord and encouraged me to push. I could feel that the head was way too far back toward my rectum and I felt like my skin needed to be coaxed back over the head slowly so I wouldn't have a tear. My contractions and my dh told me different. Next push, the head was out. The "cord" was just her head squished together making a line of white where it was pinched. Dh was still concerned and told me to push again. Out came the rest of her in a gush! Dh caught her just fine despite trying not to get the "gush" on him. It was 7:41AM. I cried and cried with joy. I thought 3 pushes wasn't too bad. He suctioned out her mouth and nose lightly and placed her on my chest. We saw that it was a girl and we were overjoyed!!! She was just beautiful and perfect. She was 8lb 9oz, 20inches. She has a ton of light brown/redish hair. She might be a blonde like her mom or a red like her dad and sister. Big sister came in the room and looked at her baby sister. She is probably the first thing the baby really saw in her new life. DD1 thought the baby was amazing. She said over and over again that she was so happy that the baby came out. She asked why I was crying and I said that I was crying with complete joy.
We waited until the cord stopped pulsing and then cut it. It seemed pretty short to me. I got to touch it unlike for dd1's birth. It felt totally different than I tought. It was real hard and rubbery. She was quiet as could be but seemed completely alert and perfect. After a while dh took the baby out to see our friend who was at our house watching our 3 year old daughter. He cried with joy too. Dh came back into the bedroom and double checked over the baby. She was amazing and healthy. He asked if I was able to push the placenta out or if I wanted to wait. I said I would try because I was ready to enjoy the baby and get cleaned up. In a couple of pushes it came out. It seemed quite beat up but complete. We figured it was because the baby was 11 days late.
Today the baby, whom we named Gigi, is 5 1/2 months old. She is still wonderful and getting stronger and more red headed by the day. She is a nursing champ depsite refusing my right breast. My first child survived 3 years on one breast so I'm not worried about it. I have just been pumping. Post partum recovery has was much better than my first. I attribute that to some suppliments that I was taking. I did suffer a small tear but it healed very well on it's own in 2 weeks.
All in all, I wouldn't change a thing. I did want pictures and video but what I have in my heart and mind is good enough. The whole experience was a life changing and yet very normal thing. The new bond that my dh and I have is amazing. You can't buy something like that. I am very proud of him and of myself. And I am very proud of my new little girl.
I am pregnant and going to have my 2nd baby. We are considering a home birth. I read your birth story. You sure made it sound alot better than being stuck by needles and strapped to monitors at the hospital. Do you have any other advice? My daughter Britney is 9, so it's like I am a 1st time mom again. Take care.
Harlan (11/4/2011)http://www.desertreadingloft.com--Independent Usborne Books Consultant