Here's Neko's birth story:
The last weeks of pregnancy are the hardest. There's so much anticipation and so much pressure inwardly to just relax! Let it flow! Anyway, after my "false labor" stint at the hospital two days before my due date I was feeling pretty depressed. But after a beautiful weekend my spirits were up. I felt good, did alot early in the week, and skipped my NST on Tuesday...but ended up going Wednesday because I could tell my midwife would like to at least see me. Well, after my NST my midwife asked if I wanted a VE, which was fine with me since we live two hours (an hour ferry boat ride) from the hospital and I thought, "Let's see what all of that labor did last week". I was 5cm and stretchy. Hmmm...what to do...MW said it may not be wise to go home if I want to make it back to the hospital in time during labor. She offered a 4 hour prostaglandin suppository to induce labor if I felt I wanted to go that route. So DH and I got a hotel, went to dinner, and discussed birth options and weighed all of the choices available to us. I knew if my water broke I wouldn't make it to the hospital. Having a baby on the boat didn't scare me, just sounded incredibly uncomfortable and not ideal. Having a homebirth didn't scare me, but we hadn't prepared for that and there's no homebirth midwives available on the island. I could make it to the island hospital but I don't trust the OB to touch me with a ten foot pole(33% c-section rate, routine EFM, episiotomies common, blah, blah).
OK, so I'm realizing something about birth. It doesn't really follow a "plan", like oh, I'll just go get on the boat when labor starts and eight to twleve hours later a baby will be born. My first (a homebirth) took 24 hours so I thought I was covered. But I like my midwife. I want her there to see me through the intensity and keep me from blasting this baby out and hurting myself...
So, Thursday AM the labor is induced. I agree to the 4 hour suppository as long as I'm allowed to walk away if it doesn't work. No pressure to upgrade to the Pitocin IV and a monitor strapped to me. MW is cool. She knows I'm an intervention phobic. EFM for 1 hour and then I'm free to be me. So ctx come every 3-5 minutes for...uh...like 9 hours. Still 5 cm and stretchy. I feel like my body is doing it's slow thing and if I just let it be all will be fine. BUT...what if I stall out again? what if I wake up pregnant tomorrow? where will I go from there? Still no pressure from MW but she says I can try Cervidil, a twelve hour prostaglandin dose and see where we go from there...well, I feel good, my body's already in labor, but my morale is a little worn from walking the maternity ward for nine hours and knowing almost every nurse employed there....again, I weigh every option. I try the Cervidil at 7 o'clock. Two hours on the EFM and then I'm free to tub, walk, whatever...At 10:30 PM I am still 5 cm and stretchy. MW suggests a tub, doze between ctx, see what happens next. So at 11:40 PM my DH is massaging my back and I feel a strongish ctx break my water in a trickle. "Call my parents and tell them to come with River," I tell my DH. And in a mighty wave the next half hour proves to be the most intense of my life. Neko was born at 12:16 AM. 9 and a half pounds of beautiful baby boy. River and my parents made it through the door just as Neko was delivered. I had the biggest endorphin rush!!!
So many things became clear to me about my body and my birth this time. But the most important thing to me is that I felt in control. I wanted to refuse induction on the sheer principle of the thing. But I realize that every birth is different and I'm just trying to do the best I can with what I have... I never felt coerced, misinformed about the risks, or pressured to fit into a timeframe and that made it--for me--a good birth.