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Old 04-13-2012, 12:47 AM   #1
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4/6/2012 - Good Friday (& a full moon!)
After dinner we went to Target & Mother's to grab a couple things & while driving there I had a "real" contraction (as opposed to the Braxton Hicks contractions I'd been having for weeks) around 7:30pm. Then another one around 7:40pm & so on. Once we got back to the car at Target, I was thinking maybe maybe maybe I was actually in labor. I texted my midwife & let her know I was contracting every 10 minutes, but they were only lasting about 20-30 seconds each. She quickly called me & let me know she'd head over to our place after getting her kids to bed unless she heard from me again telling her to wait or come faster.

While we drove home, I had started timing the contractions with my iBirth app & noticed they were now closer to 4-6 minutes apart & about 40 seconds long. I called my mom & let her know what was going on & asked her (& my sisters) to head to our place around 9:15pm unless I called her & asked her to wait longer.

We got home around 8:45pm. DH & I got the kids in bed (thankfully they had fallen asleep in the car!) & started setting things up at home. We worked great together & were having a fun time. Both of us were super excited. I had to stop every few minutes to time a contraction, so that became like a game to see how much I could get done before the next one came. Everything was pretty much ready by the time my mom & sisters arrived around 9:30pm. By that point my contractions were consistently 3 minutes apart & I was needing to relax & breathe through them. I pictured the baby moving down & my cervix opening up during each contraction, which helped a lot. I wasn't in any pain, just getting a little uncomfortable & feeling queasy. I labored in my living room (mostly rocking on all fours) while chatting with my sisters.

My midwife & her assistant (another midwife) arrived around 10pm & quickly set up their supplies in our room. They listened to the baby's heart tones & checked my vitals. My midwife later told me she guesses I was probably about 4cm dilated, based on my progression of labor & how I was acting at that point.

I asked how long the pool would stay hot if I got in now & my midwife said a few hours so I decided to get into the pool around 10:30pm. I tested out our underwater camera & took one last belly shot. Contractions slowed down a little (in frequency & intensity) but were still lasting 40-50 seconds. I leaned over the side of the pool while my midwife poured the hot water over my back. It felt amazing & helped me really relax. The only bummer was while I was in the pool, I had to get up & pee every 10 minutes or so, which was very annoying & scary because I felt like I weighed a ton when I stood up out of the water. Everything hurt so much more in comparison to when I was in the water & felt almost weightless. I did not want to experience any contractions on "land", so I'd rush to the toilet & the rush back to the pool.

A little after midnight I asked to be checked. My reasoning was that my contractions were steady & lasting longer & I was feeling even more nauseated, so I didn't want to wait forever (in what I assume was transition) before breaking my water. Side-note: based on previous births, once my water breaks, baby is born within 10 minutes or less, so as long as I was close to or in transition, I felt comfortable with having my water bag broken.

My midwife said I was 7cm dilated & my cervix was paper thin. After the exam, she checked the baby's heart tones, then we posed for a picture. It was 12:25am.The exam made my contractions intensify so I waited through a couple more & then asked for my water bag to be broken.

Up until this point, the pain was very manageable. I had been trying several different positions in the pool (squatting, floating with my legs in a froggy position, on all fours leaning over the edge of the pool, sitting cross legged, etc), breathing calmly, listening to worship music, chatting & laughing with my mom, DH, & the midwives. It was such a peaceful time. I kept telling them it felt SO surreal.

At 12:30am, at my request, my midwife checked me (I was 8cm) & broke my water bag. I *immediately* felt the baby descend & started panicking, saying "Oh no, oh no, what did we do, what did we do?!" Then I leaned over the edge of the pool & my midwife checked the baby's heart tones. My next contraction came, my midwife said "I can see the head, the head is right here." I screamed (according to DH, my classic "baby is crowning" scream), then the baby's head came out. As the contraction faded, I started talking to myself saying "No screaming, no more screaming, it's okay, you're okay. You can do this." Then I realized my mom had left the room to care for DD (who had woken up crying) so I said "Where's my mom? She needs to take pictures!" DH got up & ran to get her & they came in as the next contraction started & the baby was completely out before the contraction had ended. I flipped over as fast as I could & my midwife lifted the baby up to me. I held her on my chest & started rejoicing, saying "Oh my baby! Thank you Lord, thank you Lord!" over & over again. She was born at 12:33am, a mere 3 minutes after my water bag was broken!

We didn't look to find out the gender until DS & DD came into the room. They were sleepy & a little confused, but excited. I asked DS "Is it a boy or a girl?" & held the baby up. He said "boy", but then I moved the cord over & I asked "Is that a penis or a vagina?" He just stared. We all started laughing & I told him it was a girl. Then I announced her name, Jubilee Ann, Ann just like her grammy & one of her aunties. Both kids came close to the pool to see Jubilee & she looked right up at them. She was so calm & quiet the whole time in the pool. She only squawked once when I held her out in front of me to look at her tiny little body. Once she was back on my chest she was fine again. Her eyes were wide open & she was checking everything out. She actually lifted one eyebrow at me *&*!smiled at me within minutes of being born...such a little cutie!

Once the cord stopped pulsing (which felt like forever!) we asked DS if he still wanted to cut the cord & he nodded. So my midwife, her assistant, DH, & DS all worked together & cut the cord. All DS remembers is that some blood squirted on daddy's fingers.

It took several more contractions for the placenta to come out. Then the midwives helped me climb out of the pool, dried me off, & got me settled in bed with Jubilee. While we all cuddled her & took pictures, the midwives cleaned everything up. It was amazing how fast they worked. I nursed Jubilee a little & she latched well right away.

My midwife weighed & measured the baby & put on her first diaper (an organic flat, pad folded, with an Imse Vimse organic velour cover). She weighed 7lbs & 10oz & was 21 inches long. Her head circumference was 13 3/4 inches. My midwife handed her to DH & examined me. I didn't have any tearing or scrapes, & my midwife was impressed with how great everything looked. She massaged my uterus, & then helped me go to the bathroom, get dressed, etc. before going into the living room to fill out her charts. I tried to rest in bed while my family enjoyed Jubilee.

My afterbirth pains were almost unbearable & felt so much worse than labor! I took some cramp relief herbal tincture, some ibuprofen, & laid a heating pad on my stomach. Nothing seemed to help. I nursed Jubilee to sleep & my midwife checked in on us one more time before leaving. DH crawled into bed with us & went right to sleep. I went in & out of sleep, in disbelief & shock that labor & delivery was really over & my baby was finally here! I can't believe how great everything went & I will (hopefully) never have a land birth again!

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Old 04-13-2012, 01:22 AM   #2
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Re: My first home (& water!) birth!

What a beautiful birth story. Congrats mama.
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Old 04-13-2012, 03:23 AM   #3
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Congrats mama! Next time... just pee in the pool!
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Old 04-13-2012, 07:45 AM   #4
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Re: My first home (& water!) birth!

Wow what a beautiful story and a beautiful birth! I am also going for my first home birth and water birth. I hope my experience is as wonderful as yours was!

Congratulations again!
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Old 04-13-2012, 07:46 AM   #5
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Re: My first home (& water!) birth!

What a beautiful birth story I actually teared up! Congrats TPL!
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Old 04-13-2012, 07:52 AM   #6
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Really beautiful! Reading these has me so excited for my own. :')
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Old 04-13-2012, 08:28 AM   #7
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Re: My first home (& water!) birth!

what a great story!! thanks sooo much for sharing!!!
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Old 04-13-2012, 10:20 AM   #8
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Re: My first home (& water!) birth!

Absolutely beautiful! I hope mine goes as well in a couple weeks. Thank you for sharing.
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Old 04-13-2012, 10:28 AM   #9
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Re: My first home (& water!) birth!

awesome! I am totally with you about the afterpains; even though this was my second I was so cranky every time they would hit! It's like labor, but the baby is already there and there's nothing to help you get through it! aaah!
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Old 04-13-2012, 01:54 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by mysticmomma1879
Congrats mama! Next time... just pee in the pool!
Haha! I did after she checked me & there was nastiness floating in there. I was enjoying the clean water up until that point.
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