Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: in a beautiful Montana valley
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We were pleasantly surprised with the news of our third pregnancy in July. I
brought up the idea of having an unassisted pregnancy and birth with Matthew
early on. He was on board immediately. We had talked since our first pregnancy
about delivering our own babies but because of outside influences, I was
unsure of my body's abilities. Once the decision was made, we just relaxed into
It was so wonderful not having to keep appointments, worry about getting
unwanted tests done, and deal with strangers touching me. I ate well and tuned
into my body and my baby. I only checked my weight and fundal size a few times
and just for entertainment. I joined a few lists online that really gave me a
lot of information on having an unassisted birth. It was nice to be a part of a
community that feels pregnancy and birth are normal life events not a medical
case that needs to be managed.
The last weeks of my pregnancy were quite emotional and painful. Three weeks
before Maren's birth, I was in the room when my best friend of 12 years was
taken off of life support. It has been difficult having these two life changing
events occur so close together but I also feel it has helped me grieve. Also,
my pelvic and hip joints were so loose, it hurt to change positions much less
walk. I was so ready to have the baby because of the pain but I was saddened
because this pregnancy had been happy and peaceful. I hadn't expected to be
anxious at the end.
I was due March 18. The night before I started having contractions that were
evenly spread out at 10 minutes apart. I had contractions in the weeks before
but nothing regular. I called Matthew at work and put him on alert, only for
them to peter out at about 3 am. The following Friday the 19th, contractions
started again soon after the boys fell asleep. These were 5 minutes apart and
seemed to be getting stronger. I called Matthew home from work this time only to
have them subside around 6 am. It was hard keeping my spirits up with all the
false starts and lack of sleep.
Finally on the morning of March 24th I woke in the morning feeling a trickle
of fluid. I sat up in bed and with a gush I lost a good bit of fluid.
Throughout the day I had sporadic contractions. I thought I had lost all of my
amniotic fluid because the contractions felt more intense than the days before.
trying to keep my mind off of timing the contractions all day, I sat down at
7pm and realized they were about 5 minutes apart. I decided it would soon be
time to get serious about setting up my birth corner in my room.
I let Matthew know and he rounded up the boys, fed them, and put them to bed
around 10. I just sat back in my room and relaxed, trying to focus on
welcoming stronger contractions. I moved into many different positions all the
very in tuned to the feeling of the baby moving down with each contraction.
Matthew brought me grape juice and peanut butter crackers, lit a few candles,
then fell asleep on the bed snoring. Since this quickly irritated me, I woke him
and he went to get something to eat.
I slid off the bed into a kneeling position with my upper body leaning on the
bed. I could feel the baby move down better in that position. I had noticed
some of my contractions were right on top of each other but did not feel birth
would be anytime soon. I thought I might try to push and see of anything would
happen. I got down on my hands and pushed. My water literally exploded all
over the room as I yelled out. Matthew came running. (It is funny because in my
mind's eye I see him running in, sliding like into home base, and catching
her. It happened so fast!)
The next push the baby was out to the eyes. I reached down and felt the head.
I was yelling and pushing uncontrollably. I could feel the "ring of fire" and
tried to blow through a contraction but found I couldn't. All the time
Matthew was talking in a soothing voice trying to calm me down and telling me I
doing a good job. I pushed the third time and the baby came out to the neck.
The fourth time Matthew caught her flying out of me. I immediately lifted my
leg over the cord, turned around, and Matthew handed her to me face down. Her
face was blue so I rubbed her back and she made a tiny cry. She had a ton of
vernix all over her.
I turned to look at Matthew and we both flipped her over at the same time to
see the sex. After a glance I said, "I told you! A boy!". Matthew laughed and
told me to look again. We had our girl! I couldn't believe it! I just knew she
was a boy! I got up on the bed and nursed her right away still having strong
contractions. An hour later I still hadn't delivered the placenta so we cut
the cord as it was hard to hold her because of the length. It was another hour
before I delivered the placenta into the toilet. That is the best feeling to be
rid of all that weight!
We weighed, bathed, and measured her. It was so nice for it to be just us
spending this time together. Matthew checked my tear and decided it was second
degree. I let it heal naturally though it is the biggest I have had. Her
head was 14 1/2 in! We woke Layne in the morning first. He was upset he missed
the birth but was excited the he had the sister he wanted so badly. We woke
Liam a little later and he was taken aback. He was so cute the first week,
crossing his arms, and frowning anytime he got attention from someone. He was in
lap quite often trying to share the space since he was not the baby
Now that all is said and done, I can say my unassisted pregnancy and birth
has been one of the most freeing and empowering decisions I will ever make. I am
already looking forward to the next one but plan to spend the next few years
loving the 3 precious ones I already have. I feel so blessed!
~Lanie mom to Layne, Liam, Maren, Meridian, and Melora