Pam is my midwife, the same pamamidwife that is a member here
Shawn is my husband
Amara is my 6yr old daughter
Grey is my 3 yr old son
B is a friend of mine
Sunday 10pm: Contractions started becoming timeable. I had had many nights of sporadic and mild contractions but these were coming every 7 minutes or so with more intensity. Contractions continued through the night getting closer together but not lasting more than 30 seconds.
Monday 4am: Contractions all but stop so I go to bed. I continue to be woken up every 10-15 minutes but they never get closer together.
Monday 11am-1pm: Contractions stop
Monday 1pm: Contractions are back. The rest of the day they vary from 3-4 minutes apart lasting 30 seconds to 7 minutes apart last 1-1.5 minutes.
Monday 10pm: I reach my emotional limit. This labor has been tied to my emotions the whole time. Contractions are stronger and closer together when the kids are sleeping but tend to space out when they are awake.
I call B and cry into the phone. She offers suggestions and tries to make me laugh. I decide to take a hot bath and go to bed and try to sleep through the contractions.
Tuesday 3am: I wait until I can’t possibly stay in bed any longer and start timing contractions. 3-4 minutes and lasting 30-45 seconds.
4am: They are lasting 1 minute and not spacing out. Once this has continued for an hour I am to call the midwife.
4:30am: I wake up Shawn to help me time. I’m running back and forth to the toilet and timing is hard. I hate sitting on the toilet but feel compelled to go there during contractions. I like having Shawn there. Last time I mostly labored alone.
5am: We call Pam and she gets ready to come over. My contractions get even closer and stronger. Shawn is finishing setting up the pool. I had worried till then about setting it up too early.
5:45ish: Pam arrives just after I got in the pool. I’m moaning loudly during contractions but still making conversation in between. I’m worried this means I’ve got a long way to go.
The rest of the story is supplemented with midwife’s notes from my record
6am: I’m starting to feel like the contractions are just coming too close together to handle. I feel like as soon as one starts another begins. I can’t seem to find a comfortable position to labor in unlike my previous waterbirth in which I stayed in the same position the entire time I was in the pool. I try to remember to make low sounds and focus on opening.
6:20: I want a cervix check because I want to know I’m dilating and that it will soon be over. I don’t get one instead she encourages me to follow my body. I really hate the feeling of my hands and face being wet so I keep asking Shawn to bring me dry towels. I’m still moving around a lot. I tried to push once or twice but it didn’t feel good so I stopped. I start worrying about pooping in the pool so I get up to use the toilet. Contractions on the toilet are even more uncomfortable so I head back to the pool. I notice blood trickling down my leg and am happy for the confirmation that things are working properly.
6:39: I wanted to sleep. I was so tired and thought maybe if I layed down I could sleep. So I get out and go lay on the couch and try to sleep. I have a few contractions in which I do not vocalize. I remember looking for Shawn and one point because I can’t see him. He comes over and holds my hand. He told me later that I had about 10 minutes of no contractions then. I don’t remember this, it remember it as non stop back to back contractions.
6:52: Grey wakes up. Shawn carries him over to the pool and I’m having a contraction. He said, “Mommy is making noises.” And Shawn reassured him then he asked for fruit leather. He continues to ask for fruit leather on and off during the labor. He sits in a chair and watches me seemingly undisturbed by the labor.
7am: My water breaks on my couch (again! It happened there during Grey’s labor too). I am relieved. I’d wanted my water to break since active labor started. It felt like if I could just get my water to break I’d have a relief from some of the pressure and I did. Contractions were much better after that. I got back in the pool at that point as I anticipated pushing.
7:02: I can feel the top of her head and so call out Amara’s name to let Shawn know to wake her up. She wanted to watch the birth and I remember when my brother was born that my mom told me I could be there for the birth but I didn’t end up being able to go. I was really upset for a long time and didn’t want Amara to feel the same way.
7:05: She’s crowning! It didn’t burn or hurt nearly so much this time as it did when Grey crowned. Crowning really encouraged me to push hard. Her head was nearly out for so long! I felt like she’d never come out. I was really worried about tearing up because I felt a lot of pressure there. I tried to apply counter pressure to protect the area.
7:11: She is born! I felt instantly better! I went from feeling crazy and out of control to perfectly sane and happy.
Amara and Grey stripped down and joined me in the pool. Amara tried to hold Ivy but her cord was quite short. I had to hold myself off the bottom of the pool to keep her face out of the water. She was covered in a thick layer of vernix (but so were the other kids). She apgars were 10 and 10. She didn’t cry immediately, not until I moved her around a bit (she still doesn’t like being jostled much).
I opted to have her cord cut after 15 or so minutes because it was so short I was having trouble holding her out of the water, she was so slippery with the vernix. Shawn cut the cord and then held her while I got out of the pool to deliver the placenta. I sat on the birth stool which was really uncomfortable, I have no idea how anyone could sit there for labor! The placenta came out about 20 minutes after birth. I didn’t even really see it this time. I did notice I had a much smaller blood loss than last time and the placenta came out a lot easier.
We got nursing going easily right after the placenta came out. She latched on well and nursed for about 30 minutes. The afterpains were intense so I took some crampbark. Pam made me some toast and cleaned up, prepped the placenta for drying, and got me into bed.
Shawn took the big kids for donuts and to get a couple of things at the grocery store. After he got home I took a nap and Pam headed home.
We didn’t measure her length or head (we will at the 2 week) but she was 8lbs 5oz which I found shocking as its more than a pound bigger than her brother, and she only gestated one week longer, and one and a half pounds bigger than Amara.
At almost two weeks she’s filling out some. Nursing is still going well. She’s a very content baby that rarely cries and if she does not for very long (mostly about diaper changes). I’m feeling pretty good and even better on days when I get a nap.
Mom of a 7 yr old, 4 yr old, and 1 yr old. Wow. How did that happen?