I am posting a bit of a lead up to our decision. But I marked where the birth story begins in case you want to skip to that.
During the first few months after my c-section in 2003 I began to research my options for vbac. I could not deal with having another birth at the hospital. I started researching homebirth options and thought I'd plan an unassisted birth the next time. When the next time came around we just weren't ready for that. I ended up having a midwife attended homebirth. We found a great midwife and at 41 weeks I finally had my vaginal birth. It was amazing. I feel like for us it being at home and us being able to relax afterward with our new family just added to the experience.
13 months after my homebirth I found I was pregnant again. I was very excited to be pregnant again. I knew that I would plan to have another homebirth. My husband said he wasn't comfortable with UC again this time. So I said no problem and contacted my previous midwife. But as time to see her approached I began to feel like it wasn't right to plan the birth with her this time. So much so that I mentioned it to my husband and we talked about it. He said that I should do what I felt I needed to do. Although he was uncomfortable with it a little he was extremely supportive of my decision as long as I listened to my intuition. I was even able to talk out several fears with him and he was able to help me work through those fears in a supportive way. I did all my own prenatal care. Monitored the size of my uterus and when I was able to hear it monitored the heart beat as well as a few other things. I also decided just over half way through the pregnancy to get an ultrasound. Which showed a healthy baby boy. The rest of my pregnancy went fairly smoothly minus the pelvic discomfort I had from about 26-28 weeks for which I found a great chiropractor who really made it tolerable.
I was convinced from about 37 weeks that it would be anytime, as was my husband. I had been losing small pieces of mucus for a week at that point. I was having some contractions while walking that made me breathe a bit deeply but I wouldn't say I had prodomal labor. He was perfectly lined up and would move up and down in my pelvis. Although he got progressively lower each week from this point on.
The day of my due date I was so frustrated. I would have days that I had so many possible signs that it would be soon and then days where it would appear to take a step back and make me think it was going to be a while. I puttered around the house as was usual the past few weeks picking up things here and there. Did a few loads of laundry. I made stir fry for lunch and went back for seconds some time later as it was really tasty. I started to feel a bit ill so I gave the rest to my dd. I put a movie on for the two of them and laid in my bed for a while. DD is not quite two so she came in every few minutes to tell me something or show me something. After laying there for 20-30 minutes I felt a bit better and got up. I had a couple of contractions there but they weren't even really that noticeable so I paid them no mind. The movie was still going so I decided to sit at the computer on my yoga ball. I noticed the contractions were starting to be painful so I opened an online contraction timer for kicks and started keeping track. It was just about 5:00pm they were 3-5 minutes apart and 30-45 seconds long. The same as they started with dd. I did not let myself get excited though. I did mention it to my husband though that they were mildly painful but could be nothing. In fact I timed them for just over an hour this way and was still denying that this was definitely it while I was moaning through the contractions.
My husband doesn't usually get off work until 7 pm so I was just going to wait to call him it was already 6 by this time and I figured they still might go away and if they don't I wont need him until much later anyway. About 6:10 he called me and said he was on his way. My body took this as the green light to up the intensity. Every few minutes I had to tell him to hold on while I breathed and moaned through definitely active labor. And then I'd pick up the phone and tell him to go ahead. Just before 6:30 I told him I needed to hang up and he wanted to give his mom a heads up anyway. He was about 5-10 minutes out. I shuffled to the bathroom and then had my ds bring me the ball to lean over in the bathroom and he also was able to fix me some water. (He is such a sweetie and was excited that the baby was coming) As soon as dh walked in the door I think transition hit I felt really ill although the thought that it might be transition didn't occur to me until after the fact. As soon as he came back to the bathroom I told him to start filling the pool that I needed it.
The contractions hurt so bad that I was nearly screaming I think. I was plotting all the steps needed to go to the hospital and get an epidural. Wondering how long I would have to wait once I got there.Then I was trying to figure out why the contractions hurt so bad and how was I going to do this for another several hours. By this time the pool was filled half way and I got in anyway. No relief though. I was still screaming. Dh moved around getting things ready and set up another movie for the kids. They were definately more interested in what I was doing and kept coming in for a while. I asked for my mom to be called since she wanted to be there. As I was screaming through another contraction Logan told me I didnt need to be afraid. He said I responded that I wasnt although I dont remember this. I do remember feeling myself physically tighten up all my pelvic muscles during a contraction and figured this is why they were so painful. So as I figured out how to remedy that Logan said we m ight try the sacral release the chiropractor had showed us. So I stood up against the wall and he found the spot he needed to put his hand and I began to rotate my hips and pelvis in whatever manner I felt I needed to and he felt the baby move down. I did not notice this. But a contraction was coming and I turned toward him and hung off of him.
Once I got back in the water I told myself no more screaming no more tightening up. I needed to relax. So I started breathing and somewhat moaning through the contractions and holding Logans hands and looking into his eyes which really seemed to help. I started getting the urge to push which this time actually felt better this time. At first the pushes were half hearted. After all it had not been nearly long enough for me to be at pushing stage already. But since it felt better I figured it was safe to push. So I started pushing in whatever way I felt like I needed to. I was kneeling down near the side of the pool and had my elbows on the side. I noticed a burning sensation and mentioned that to Logan, who wanted to know where it was burning and if I was concerned. I said no..the baby. I couldn't get too many words out at this point. I put my hand down and could feel his head just inside me. It was soft and wrinkled and felt like velvet. I managed to tell Logan to go get the camera and he told the kids to come in since they wanted to see the baby be born. Another contraction hit and I pushed a couple times with it and his head popped out while my hands were still there. It was the most amazing thing to me to feel that big round head all the way out of me and I asked Logan if he could see it and he said no. So I raised up into a squat more in the middle of the pool to try and let him see. I waited and felt the baby rotate and with the next contraction he was born.Just shy of 3 hours after my first contraction, at 7:46 pm. He kinda came out and shot across under the water. I sat back and reached for him and pulled him up to my chest. I was flooded with so many emotions. I did it. I was proud of myself and my body for how powerful it was. I was so happy. He didnt make a whole lot of noise. He just looked around a bit and was definitely breathing. Logan took some pictures of those first few minutes while we were still in the pool and then we got situated to climb out. I was moving over to the bed when my parents arrived. They were about 5 minutes away when he was born. Shortly after that I pushed the placenta out and we tied and cut the cord. They held the baby for us while Logan helped me clean off and get some pajama's on. Then I got in my recliner and nursed my new sweet baby.
My husband and I are just in awe at how great this decision was for us.The kids did really well and dd is still saying "bebe waa waa" yes he was born in the water. She is just so fascinated by that. I am thrilled that they got to experience that.
Here are the stats..
at 7:46 pm
21 inches long
8lbs 2 oz