Home Birth Story: Chapter Three

I posted back in oct 2009 about my previous 2 homebirths right after I found this website. Now I want to add my third homebirth story.

http://morebabiespreferhomebirth.com/post/221323105/home-birth-story-two-home-births

My Third Homebirth

This story begins with a surprise, a disappointment and devastation, then a renewed joy. We had felt that our family of 4 was complete and were not trying for another child when we were pleasantly surprised. 
Surprise
The day that I had tested positive on that little home pregnancy test, I thought that I’d break the news to the family at dinner that night. I invited my dad over and made a nice dinner and even had placed an open Corona in front my husband at the table (something that I have never done by the way, so he was a bit suspicious and reluctant to touch it). Well, dinner barely started and I couldn’t contain myself with the news. Everyone was excited and a lively discussion ensued at the dinner table and finally my husband drank the beer.
Disappointment and Devastation
Since I wasn’t planning another pregnancy I didn’t have a clue what date was my last period so we went for an ultrasound. It showed that we were very early and the tech couldn’t accurately date it yet. It was a bit disappointing but still ok. Then about 4 weeks later, I started spotting blood. I called my midwife and we discussed a plan. A few days later, I had a miscarriage. The ER experience was horrible. I was devastated. I knew that I didn’t want to go through that again but I was not sure what I wanted. 
Renewed Joy
After a couple of months, out of the blue, I told my husband that I wanted another child. At first, he thought that I was joking, but when he saw in my eyes how serious I was, he was overjoyed. A couple of months later, we got that big fat positive home pregnancy test.
Pregnancy
It was a pretty normal pregnancy so I won’t dwell on it too much. I met with my midwife that had for our second child and she was just as awesome as before. We did however have a slight moment of uncertainty in the beginning. Our midwife was not able to hear the fetal heartbeat on the first visit. She knew how insecure I was since having gone through the miscarriage and kindly told me that I could just drop by anytime after the 14th week, no appointment necessary, and she would take another listen. Well, I got a bit busy and didn’t come back until week 15. She checked again and still could only pick up my pulse on the Doppler. So she quickly ordered the ultrasound at the local hospital and arranged an appointment as soon as they would get me in, which was 2 days later. Those were agonizing 2 days. The ultrasound went well and we saw the heartbeat and baby moving around. It was such a relief that I could not hold back the tears. My nearly 6 year old son wanted to know w! hy I was crying and I told him it was for happiness and that sometimes moms do that and it’s ok. The rest of the pregnancy, I didn’t want to know the gender so it was exciting as time got closer to the end.
Due Date
My other 2 were born rather close to my due dates so I naturally expected that this one would also. It was rather amusing listening to all of the complete strangers and friends and family that I would run into that had all kinds of predictions on gender and when I’d give birth. All of them were wrong. I did however expect to have back labor this time, since I had it with both of my other 2 and during the miscarriage. That prediction was correct. 
The Next Day
The day after my due date, at about 3am, I started to have contractions, in my lower back. They were quite painful right from the start so I naturally assumed that baby would be here soon, perhaps later that day. I made some calls to the midwife, my sister and my mother and then tried to go back to sleep to get some rest knowing that this was going to be a long day.
I was relieved to know that despite the back pain, I was able to get some sleep. I laid on a heating pad and let my husband sleep after I let him know what was going on. I knew that I would need his help later. All through the day, the contractions were quite sporadic. I tried timing them several times and each time I was disappointed when they were not consistent or getting stronger or longer. They did reach a point when I needed my husband to massage my lower back to get through each one. So all day long, he helped me get through them and we tried to have a semi-normal day. 
As evening approached, I had the feeling that things were going to pick up so I called my friend that was going to watch the kids. I timed the contractions for an hour and still no pattern. We watched a movie for a distraction. When the contractions still had not changed, the midwife called for an update, she recommended rest and suspected that things would pick up later that night. So, I sent the kids to bed and our friend home for some rest and she promised to return when we needed her.
I decided to lay down in bed in kind of a lunge-like position, half on my left-side, half on my belly with my right knee up as close to my chest as my belly allowed possible. I labored through a few contractions when suddenly, I had an uncontrollable persistent pain and had my husband come in and help me up out of bed. I went to the bathroom and then to the living room to sit on the exercise ball. Since my husband was at the computer I sat near him so that he could massage my lower back through the contractions. It didn’t take long and they were coming one right after another. He barely had time to make the 3 phone calls in between my contractions to get our friend, my sister (the doula) and my midwife to come.
Our friend was closest, so she got here first. I never bothered to time these contractions because they were so strong and fast and long that all I could do was rock on the ball and lean onto a chair in front of me with my husband behind me massaging. Then, I felt a small gush of water and the membrane moving down the canal. I stood up bent over and screamed, “The baby is coming now!” I asked my husband to help me get my pants off, but they were stuck. After he tried a bit to get them off, to no avail, I told him to just cut them off. He did and then went back to massaging me. I went to my knees and leaned on the computer chair. Our friend called the midwife to update her on this new development and she said that she was only 5 minutes away. I knew that I had to start pushing and prayed that the midwife would get here in time.
The midwife, her assistant and my sister all arrived at the same time and they quickly worked together to get the birthing supplies together and ready. My sister then took over the massage with counter-pressure right where and when I needed it most. That almost took the pain away, well, at least the back pain anyway. The baby’s head was quite large so it took a few contractions to get it out and when it hit the half-way point, the contractions paused long enough to allow the perineum to stretch naturally. Once the head was all the way out, just one more big push and the whole body came out. Not a single tear. Only 27 minutes of pushing out of 1 hour and 17 minutes or active labor. Our big baby was lying behind me while the midwife suctioned out his lungs so I couldn’t see what we had until I asked. My husband said, “It’s a boy.” I could tell that he was big but it wasn’t until we were settled in bed and the midwife weighed him that we got the shock. He was 10 pou! nds and 4 ounces, 22 inches long and head circumference of 35cm. Somehow I knew that he was going to be that big. At some point near the end, I don’t recall exactly, I gave our friend the OK to wake up our son to be a part of things and we let our daughter sleep until baby and I were in bed. 
The kids were quite excited and had lots of fun taking pictures of the baby and everyone there. They almost didn’t want to go back to bed.
Out of all 3 labors, this one was by far the hardest and the easiest. I know that doesn’t make much sense, but I feel wonderful and grateful and blessed to have had the support and love and the strength to carry out this one life-altering event in the safety and security of my home. This story is just the third installment of my homebirth journey that began several years ago. I cherish every moment of it and the family that we have become.

{If you’d like to share your own home birth story, please use the form at right to submit it.}

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#home birth

#birth story

#doula

#midwife

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