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The birth was perfect! I started having contractions about 4 pm on Wednesday, Feb. 13th They were mild and I wasn't sure if they were the kind that would start and stop or keep intensifying. I called our midwives just to give them heads up, but really didn't think it would turn into labor. Nick took the girls out for an errand and I worked on some wool sculpting for a while, greeted the mailman and made a couple phone calls. I deliberated whether or not to have my Mom come over after work or not, as she was to be the childcare person and labor support. I decided to call her just in case. Better to have her here for no labor than to have to drive an hour later at night. That turned out to be a good choice! Nick and the girls returned and we had dinner. Mom arrived about 7 and the contractions got a little stronger. I still wasn't sure if they would continue or stop, though. They were only about 20 seconds long and not very intense. About 8 pm while Mom was getting the kids in bed, Nick filled the birth pool and called the midwives again to tell them that I definitely was in labor and the contractions were getting stronger. I was still up and around but needing to concentrate more and tried spiraling my hips during contractions, which felt good. They asked if we wanted them to come but I wasn't sure yet so I said not yet. I didn’t want them to be sitting here for hours on end and they were getting stronger but still not too bad.<br>
A few contractions after that I went to the couch and had Nick help with an acupressure point during contractions. They picked up in intensity! The next few were strong and were getting uncomfortable. I remember telling Nick I didn’t want to do anymore. That was my only fright or flight moment. After that I realized I was in this till the end and <span style="text-decoration:underline;">it was up to me how I was to do it</span>. I asked Nick to tell the midwives to come now. I figured it would be better to have them here for a few hours than not and it was supposed to get icy. MW1 is about 35 minutes and MW2 about 45 minutes to an hour away. They hopped in their cars and Nick, Mom and I were on the couch. I found rubbing my belly during a contraction helped and also put my focus on the baby I could feel moving inside and take some focus off the uncomfortable feeling. Nick did some more acupressure and Mom was fanning me, which felt good.<br>
They were still getting stronger and I needed a change and to pee so I went into the bathroom. I had a few contractions there that were very strong and I focused on the fact that this is simple a muscle stretching to let my baby out. It is contained to that one part of my body. My feet, legs, arms, face felt normal. I compared it to a leg cramp and that really helped my perception of what I was feeling. I wouldn’t say thinking that made it feel good, but it was the difference between perceiving it as pain and strength. I kneeled in front of the toilet hoping I could throw up but didn’t. I thought to myself that I might be in transition and hoped I was right because they were so strong. With that though I felt a pop and my water broke. The waters were clear which was a good sign for the baby. I had one more contraction there and then got up and went to the pool. That was a great feeling! The warm water and soft inflated tub were very comforting. I kneeled and leaned on the edge of the pool so Nick could do more acupressure. The first contraction I felt there was a lot stronger but not painful. It felt a little pushy which is a feeling I was excited for. I knew I was close and with these contractions I could feel the baby moving down. The next contraction happened itself. They all did, but this one took no effort on my part. It just happened. All I had to do was ride it out. I started to feel burning and knew the baby was moving into the birth canal. I was a little surprised that I was here already, but excited and relieved because I knew we’d meet our baby soon. I tried spiraling again, which took the edge off. I knew a contraction was coming because I involuntarily made these deep grunting sounds. I was quiet through all of the contractions until these. With this one I felt the baby’s head move completely through my birth canal. I could feel myself opening. I got into a squat and with the next one I reached down and felt the baby’s soft head. The next contraction brought out his head! I barely added any pushing. There he was and I could feel his little face. I didn’t feel any cord, but his neck was still inside so it was hard to tell. I announced that the head was out, I think to the surprise on Nick and Mom. On the next one I pushed and put support on my perineum. I felt a shoulder and slooowly pushed until the other one came out. The rest of him slid into the water and he was born! I sat back and held our baby under the water for about a minute so we could look at him. The cord was not around the front of his neck but was around the back of his neck and his arm and shoulder, so I slid it off. He stretched his arms and opened his eyes briefly and looked around. He was so peaceful and calm. Nick asked what he was and we looked to see he was a boy!!!<br>
I lifted him out of the water to my chest. He was still and made very little noise. He was pink but we needed to rub his back to stimulate him to breathe and Nick called the MW who walked him through this. His airway wasn’t blocked, he just needed a reminder about what his job was now. Mom blew some air puffs on his face and I rubbed his back. He then made some little baby sounds and was fine. Mom brought Astrid out to meet her brother and Gwen came out briefly, then decided to go back to sleep.<br>
About ten minutes later MW1 arrived and a minute after that, MW2! Once again, I had an unassisted birth! The atmosphere was calm and warm when they arrived. I was still in the water with the baby- who we already knew would be named Nicholas Niles IV, like his dad, the Third. After a few more minutes, I handed the baby to Nick and carefully got out of the pool and moved to the couch to deliver the placenta. A couple more contractions and a push and it came out perfectly intact and rather cute if I say so myself. It was very compact and round and did a wonderful job nourishing our baby for nine months.<br>
We moved into the bedroom and snuggled in as a little family. After about an hour, Nick and Astrid cut the cord and little Nicholas was his own. He was born at 10:04pm on February 13, 2008. He weighed 7 pounds and 8 ounces.
 

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Wow, it was an amazing birth! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/love.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="love"> Congrats!! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngbiggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="orange big grin"> Happy babymooning!
 

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THANKS! I HOPE YOUR UPCOMING BIRTH EXPERIENCE IS JUST AS WONDERFUL!<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/love.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="love">
 

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Beautiful! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 
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