fast labor, long story
T’s birth story started a few months ago. Her big brother C started praying that she’d be born
on a Saturday in August. When we asked him why, he said that he wanted her to be born before school
started. We asked if another day would be ok. He said no. So for months he prayed for her to be born on
At the end of June I had an Aunt die in California. She was actually my mom’s aunt, so my great aunt,
but she meant a lot to me and I knew that even though I was nearing 30 weeks pregnant I had to go to LA
for her funeral. It was going to be a quick trip, Wednesday to Saturday. I got home on the 3rd of July. I
woke up on the 4th feeling pretty crappy. I went to church anyway with the kids. Travis had to work
the entire day and I thought that if I went to church that would be 3 hours of not having to deal with
the kids as they would be in class for at least 2 hours. That evening I started contracting lightly. I tried
everything to get rid of them. Nothing was working. So I called one of the men in our church that is a
priesthood holder and asked him to get one more to come give me a blessing. (Travis was at work, or he
could have been one of the priesthood holders.)
In our church we believe that all worthy men hold the
same power of healing the sick and afflicted as Christ did while he was here on the earth. In the blessing
I was blessed that the contractions would stop and I would be fine. I was told that T would come in
the Lord’s time.
The week before Saturday August 21st I contracted off and on all week; anywhere between 30 minutes
and 1.5 hours of contractions. Then after Saturday passed I had a few days of no contractions. Saturday
the 28th I woke in the morning with them again. My midwife had gone out of town, but I was in touch
with her and with my doula and the back-up midwife. I contracted for 4 hours before they finally
stopped. Between the 21st and 28th we convinced C that any day in August would be acceptable for
Tuesday August 31, 2010 I had an appointment with the midwife, J, at 1:45 PM today. At this time
I was dilated to four centimeters and contracting lightly. My blood pressure was 140/90. I was sent home
to lie down on my left side and to rest. Again, we called another priesthood holder in the church to assist
Travis in giving me a blessing. We were concerned about my BP as it had been low my entire pregnancy
(110/78-118/80) and my sister had a history of Eclampsia and has had 3 emergency c-sections because of
BP. I was blessed that nature would take its course and that my body would hurry things along so that it
could return to normal. I was also blessed that I would be calm and that I would know exactly what to do
when the time came. If only we knew then what we know now!
From 230 when we got home until 415 the contractions were bearable and 6-8 minutes apart. They soon
got intense enough so I couldn’t relax between them and wanted a warm shower while I was waiting for
my doula to arrive. The contractions picked up at 5:30 PM. I knew it was time to go. The contractions
had gone from six minutes apart to two minutes apart. I called the babysitter, P, to come over
immediately. I called J, my midwife, to have her start heading to the birthing center. My doula,
L, who was already heading to the apartment, was called to go to the birthing center instead.
I barely made it down the stairs between contractions. Just before I got into the car, I thought, “This baby
better not be born in the car!” I also thought there was no way to finish labor because the contractions
were so hard and close together. After we left the parking lot, the contractions occurred on top of each
other on Reserve Street near Rosaeur’s Market. I suddenly realized I was pushing so I planted my feet on
the floor, my head on the head rest and lifted my derrière off the seat. I tried to lift up my skirt to pull
down my underwear. I started pushing again and my water broke. The traffic was backed up terribly.
Travis went into the suicide lane and was traveling 70 mph telling me not to push any more. He kept
asking me what to do; pull over or drive-- as if I had any ideas! It was then that I said, “Here’s a head!
Here’s a head!!”
By now it was 5:47 PM and Travis was on the phone with J. Probably one to two minutes after that
there was another gush of fluid and out came her body. She lay suspended on the seat and my underwear
that was down to my knees. I sat there staring at her in disbelief Travis yelled at me to pick up the baby
and wrap her in my skirt or something. I picked her up and she was purple but crying. Then she stopped
crying and started gasping for air. I could see the umbilical cord wrapped around her neck twice and under
each arm once. While I tried to get the cord off Travis arrived at one of the busiest intersections in the
city. T was trying to cry and be able to breathe at the same time. All the sudden, in my mind, I saw
myself turning her over and under the cord to get it off. I started to do what I was seeing in my mind. It
was being played out like a movie. So step by step with my movie I turned her over to unwrap her from
the cord, somersaulted her around until the cord came loose from her neck and under her arms. During all
this time Travis was honking the horn making his way through the red light at Brooks and Reserve. I then
began rubbing T’s chest to get her to cry and to breathe. We were two blocks from the birthing
center. We pulled in to the parking lot as everyone came running out to meet us. They clamped the
baby’s cord while I was still in the car. Travis cut the cord. The assistant ran with the T inside the
center in order to get the baby warm while the others were trying to figure out how to get me out of the
car. As they got me into the birthing center, I delivered the placenta.
It took J several minutes to sew me up. I sustained a fair amount of tearing inside and out because
of the position I was in as I gave birth. Travis held T the entire time I was being sewed up. Within
15 minutes, T was nursing. She fed for 15 minutes on one side even before the staff at the birthing
center weighed her. She has a super good latch and a deep suck.
After T finished nursing, they weighed her: 7# 11 oz, 20 inches long and her head measuring 14
inches. My blood pressure had dropped to 136/88.
My doula felt so bad she hadn’t been there for me. But she was great at the birthing center. She was right
by me while I was being stitched up, helping me through the contracting of my uterus and the stitching, all
while Travis was holding T and introducing her, by phone, to family. She helped T get latched
on, and she had had the presence of mind to grab a camera, as we hadn’t, so she took tons of pictures. She
went and got Travis and I some real food instead of just the snacks that we had brought to eat during
labor. I can’t wait to see the pictures she took! I am so glad she had her camera or there would be no
pictures to go with out birth story!
My bleeding was minimal and they told me that we could go home as soon as I went to the bathroom and
my BP dropped. By 845 we were on our way home. We got home shortly after 9. P came out to help
me up the stairs while Travis got T in the house. We have 29 stairs leading to our apartment. It will
be a long time before I leave the house again!
I thought my birth story was finished. But as I was showering tonight I realized it wasn't. I can not imagine having this happen and driving into the hospital where I would have been greeted by strangers and forced to answer a million questions and having my baby taken away from me and examined. Instead we were greeted by caring friends, my midwife and her team. I didn’t even know some of the people that greeted us, but they were friends none the less. There was no barrage of questions, everyone knew what happened. I was greeted by soft caring hands that only wanted to make sure I was ok. they carefully took everyone inside and I had the most gentle care possible. I got to see my baby who last I had seen was purple and gasping for air. She was in the loving arms of her dad instead of on a table being examined. As soon as I was done being stitched I got to hold her and love her. 15 minutes, maybe 20 was all, not an hour or more that it could have been. How grateful I am for my awesome midwife and her team. They really made a great end to a scary experience. It’s one we can laugh and joke about and feel comfortable with. A lot of that is in part to them. Thanks so much!
Heather. LDS, homeopathic, Gluten Free, dye free. Mom to 6.5 yo DS 4yo DD and 1.5 yo DD born in the car
. Ask me about essential oils!
Last edited by jefesita; 02-18-2011 at 10:42 PM.