On Saturday, June 23, 2007 I was 5 days “overdue” and quite frustrated after the midwives left (see my previous post.)
I burst out in tears when talking to my husband about it as they pulled out of the driveway. I really felt that I wasn’t even awake enough to judge my own state, did I feel like I was in labor? Or not?
In any case, the news of my check just before was not very helpful to a promising outlook for the day. I knew that it could “go fast” when it decided to, but I was so not “ready” in the traditional way of dilitation (dilation, dilating) and thinning (effacing) of the cervix. As the midwife had said, I had some hard work to do to get to active labor.
What time was it at this point? Not sure. around 7am something. I did decide after the tears to take a nice bath, to see if it would help me with my gassy-pain feelings. I did determine that in actuality I thought I was having contractions, but they were strange. At some point I queried myself and found that I was thinking that I had the same stuff going on when I had awakened that morning, and was having it when the midwife check me, but she noted nothing going on particularly, I didn’t say anything since I was blind to how I was feeling then.
The bath didn’t last too long, I grew sick of it, and did go downstairs to sit on the couch, where hubby was. I felt uncomfortable there, and then left, tried a shower. Sat on the toilet. Nothing helped. So then I laid down in bed on the left side, with my headphones on, listening to Bruckner’s 4th Symphony on my Sansa e260. I noted that the feelings I was having were squeezing feelings, just about 4 minutes apart. I was timing them via the Sansa interface which showed how much time was left in the song, and how much time the song had been playing. I noted for sure after a few of those timings that I was “going under” and using the music to visually go to it and stay atop of what was going on in my body. I was coming out of that visualization after the intensity was gone, and then remembering how intense it was getting, going back into that visualization ASAP to get ahead of the intesity as it would inevitably be coming.
I listened to the 1st movement like this. The second movement began and not too much into it I was struggling to stay in the visualization. Hubby was in the bedroom then, and withing minutes I heard the children watching a movie downstairs and it was TOO LOUD and I yelled down to them to turn it down. I tried to listen to Bruckner then again, and couldn’t tolerate it one solitary bit and grabbed my headphones off of my head and threw the whole thing, player and all, not caring one whit about hurting them. I couldn’t STAND having music in my ears for another second.
I went into the bathroom and decided to try a bath. Things felt very intense and maybe the water would ease that this time, when it hadn’t earlier when trying bath and shower, and that was cake-walk sort of intensity back then.
One must understand, this was morning still, the day was supposed to stretch out before us, to attempt rest and get my body on the path to active labor. The midwives had been there and left thinking at the earliest possible they’d need to come back later that day …
As I was filling the bathtub I just was bowled over by the intensity and realized it was all coming really fast, way faster then every 4 minutes. I had only a couple of inches of water in the tub and I turned the water off, hating the sound of the water rushing from the faucet. I had also been having a vision of the baby coming down, I could see the head coming down, a real vision it was.
I’d been having that before this point, but it was a clearer vision now … I was on my hands and knees in the tub, in just a couple of inches of water, and I got very vocal. I knew what was happening, but couldn’t be “sure” as it hadn’t been very long since being pronounced 1cm and still thick. I went through some more intense contraction thingies (nothing to compare them to, totally futuristic-freight-train-like) and then I heard a “POP” sound inside me and then a “POOF” and absolute relief for a couple of seconds … and some stringy bloody mucus pieces were in the water. I yelled to hubby to call the midwife to report this and see what she said, but knowing inside, it was probably further progressed than anyone had a clue, even me.
So as far as I know the midwife was contacted and decided to come back.
It wasn’t much longer after this that the pressure hit. Whoo Boy. I had hubby with me, and I was needing him to put his hand on my lower back whenever one of those “rapid contractions” hit, and keep it there until it receded, pressing as hard as he could, not touching me ANYWHERE ELSE! There wasn’t much breath catching time inbetween, and I was more vocal than I’ve ever been in birthing, it was impossible not to be. I was standing up, but bending over holding onto something … what I don’t recall, or maybe it was nothing. Anyhow, the pressure increased, the absolute feeling of something coming down, and something else coming down. That always happens with me, something else comes out first, and when it does, that’s it, it’s too late to think about anything but the baby …
So when this was going on I did go down on my hands and knees in the bathroom, not able to deal with going anywhere else, or into any other position. I was staying that way, that was that. Hubby was calling the midwife to check on her whereabouts and got her on the cellphone at some point here. I was also checking and was able to feel the baby’s head partway up in the vaginal area, not yet crowning, and I was trying to alert hubby to the inevitable fact of impending baby.
So it gets muddy a bit here, but the midwife was on speaker phone, the phone on the bathroom counter and she was coaching hubby through the whole affair.
This was very different from our previous home birth in 2000, which we ended up doing ourselves too, the midwife was on the way when baby Asa was born.
This current home birth (2007) was a freight train birth, but the baby came out slower this time (compared with our 2000 home birth), allowing the head out, then the shoulders and arms and then the rest of the body … (whereas Asa (2000) crowned and basically came right out into my hands in 2000.) In both cases though, I did no pushing or holding back, I could do neither. My body was on automatic and did the work needed.
As soon as the baby was out I wanted to hold it desperately ()and did and proclaimed gladly, “It’s a boy!”
–> Hubby will have to write out the missing part of the story. I’ll input it in place of this paragraph soon. –>
With the baby out I was able to move out of the hands and knees position, and looking ahead saw the bed and longed to get onto it (and said so,) and hubby helped me to the bed. The placenta delivered not long after, which did require a tad bit of work on my part.
I had baby on me, wrapped in a towel and looking so blissfully cute. I was able to get him to breastfeed right after the placenta delivered.
The midwife arrived about 30 minutes after the birth. (She was on the way while this was happening, she talked hubby through the delivery on the phone.)
We didn’t plan to deliver our second home birth baby ourselves, again. But we did what we needed to do. It was a blessing to me to have it happen as it did, even though I did want the midwives there, but it was such a rapid thinning and dilation and decent of baby … I was glad to have my privacy to voice my way through the intensity.
OOOOOOHHHHH and AAAAHHHHHH being the vocalizations of choice pulled out of nowhere. Not screaming or yelling, but large voice of natural or trained singer doing the sounds (which is what I am.)
The midwives took over when they arrived, which we loved in 2000 and loved in this 2007 birth.
Our beautiful baby boy has blond hair and dark blue eyes, sort of dark blue icy marbles, with lighter blue veining, a design of some sort. Overall they are just wonderfully dark and blue, icy dark blue, cold brilliant blue. This baby is our second with blue eyes. Our first has bright blue eyes, very warm and bright. Interesting to me. I have green eyes and hubby has a changeable sort of green/blue pale mixture. Blue as blue can be are the eyes of two of our sons, but totally different blues. 🙂 Recessive genes can be lovely.
Quentin Emery was born at 10:46am on June 23, 2007. He weighed 7 lbs. 14 ozs. and was 21inches long.