I woke up at 5 am on Jan. 22 w/contractions 5 minutes apart. By 11am the contractions were strong enough that I called DH and told him to come home from work, called my in-laws and told them to be at our house within 24 hours (they live in another state), called my doula and told her to meet me at the hospital in the afternoon. I started passing some bloody mucus. At hospital triage, the contractions were still 5 minutes apart and my cervix was completely closed, so I went home after 2 hours on EFM.
Contractions continued all through the night, getting stronger but not closer together. At my regular OB appt. on 1/23, I was 1 cm dilated and I asked to have my membranes swept. Contractions continued to get stronger, but not any closer. My in-laws arrived right after the OB appt.
On 1/24, I realized I could no longer labor at home. It was too intense and it was upsetting DS1. My doula met me at the hospital at 10:30 am. My water had broken -- without me realizing it -- on the way to the hospital. I was 4 cm dilated, hooked up to an IV and EFM. With the help of my doula, I was able to change positions frequently, from the bed to the rocker to the birth ball to pacing beside the bed. Whenever I sat down or lay down, the contractions slowed down and became weaker. Whenever I got up to use the toilet, I would have 4 or 5 really strong contractions in a row.
Dilation was complete at 9 pm on 1/24, and I started getting the urge to push, but couldn't find the right muscles to use. Around 11 pm, I pushed and felt my baby's head pop through the cervical opening. DH came running in after tucking in our very anxious DS1 at home. I kept changing positions to push, and finally the baby came squirting out -- sunnyside up! -- at 1:30 am on 1/25. He was covered in meconium and had the cord around his neck. DH rushed to be by his side as his mouth and nose were suctioned and I was stitched up -- I had a second degree tear. DH insisted that we name our baby Jasper, I'm not sure where this inspiration came from, but I love it. Our baby is gorgeous and super-snuggly, just like his big brother. We are totally in love!
I never felt the need for painkillers, even though the labor lasted for 68.5 hours. I was soooooooo happy that I went into spontaneous labor (I never even had pre-labor symptoms before DS1's labor was induced at 41+ weeks), that I truly welcomed each contraction joyfully. I know that sounds insane, but it's true. The pain was never as bad as the Pitocin-induced contractions I had with DS1. I always had a break between contractions, and I used yoga breathing techniques, yoga positions and Hypnobirthing relaxation/visualization methods to ease discomfort. My doula was also familiar with these methods, and she helped immensely. It was a 3 day long yoga marathon. Recovery has been much easier than my c-section. We are having breastfeeding issues, but things improve every day.
Thank for this DDC. It's been a source of inspiration!