5 weeks later I’m finally getting around to jotting some thoughts down about Cooper’s wildly adventurous entrance earth side. I won’t lie, that pregnancy about put me through the wringer… or so it felt. (See previous post for a snap shot). But honestly, he was a healthy babe growing in there, so for that I am super thankful!
I don’t even know where to start! My due date was June 1, 2021 and so my mom and I had planned for her to come 1 week before my due date and stay for 2 weeks. I had never gone more than 1-2 days past my EDD so we felt that was safe. Around 38 weeks I had a major round of intense prodromal labor. I thought for sure it was the real deal.. I called my midwife and doula and everything! It was… embarrassing. Well this episode then shoved my body into consistent prodromal labor… for weeeeeeeeks. There were a few times I thought for sure he was coming. Only to wake up… stillll pregnant. 40 weeks came and went… 41 weeks greeted me with sorrow as I waved goodbye to my mom and sent her back to Arizona. I was angry. And annoyed… and well… DONE being pregnant. We decided this babe needed to come by 41+3 so we could avoid all the extras. The tests, the scans, the nerves of possibly having to transfer out of care with my midwife to a hospital. I was getting antsy.
So.. Thursday June 10, under supervision of my midwife I drank the dreaded labor cocktail. As my 3 year old would say “that’s bigusting!!!”.
I waited…. And waited… and waited some more. Nothing. Not even a twitch…. Maybe some cramps… but nothing… I cried. A lot. And hard. But I wiped my tears, made dinner and poured myself a small glass of wine (yes I had permission) and crawled into bed early.
11:55p/12am- on June 11th I BOLTED out of bed… I thought for sure I was going to hurl and poop my pants all at the same time… ugh.. the only thing running through my mind at that moment was fear… fear that I had come down with a stomach bug. As I sat in the bathroom the depths of my insides crunched and twirled. I bent over in pain as my memory flooded with familiarity… LABOR. But wait… why is it so.insanely.strong and painful? I thought it was supposed to build over time. I waited…. 3 minutes later… again. I texted my doula at 12:15am… I told her I think I’m in labor, hard/Active labor… between contractions I ran upstairs and woke up my husband, and while mid-contraction groaning and breathing, he said “yea, those are the sounds I remember” and he popped out of bed.
At 12:23 while my doula was on her way, I told her I think I needed to call Rebekah, my midwife. Then at 12:25 I called my midwife and I am SO glad I did as my contractions kept coming, demanding every ounce of my energy and focus. I felt shaky… I was nervous, excited, shocked and of course feeling pain that sent my adrenaline roaring since it jolted me from a dead sleep.
I left my front door unlocked as I kneeled, frozen on the floor in the living room. My mind racing… this is going fast, I mumbled to myself a hundred times. My doula walked in, coffee and a smile! She reminded me to relax, encouraged me and got moving with filling up the pool. I had hoped for a water birth. She got me some different clothing as I was rockin’ my husbands XL white t shirt and his underwear! (Hey, it’s what fit and was comfy). I kept the undies and ditched the shirt for a night gown. And each contraction (now 2-3 mins apart) left me feeling just a tad “pushy”… At 12:54am my midwife walked through the door and we made our way downstairs where I had the pool being filled and planned to labor and give birth. I resumed the kneeling position on the floor by the sofa downstairs as she chatted me through some contractions. We talked about what the game plan was as she rummaged through her bags grabbing the essentials… first thing: check my vitals and then check baby’s heart tones… the contractions were coming so quickly and so strong. I leaned back, looked at Rebekah and said “this feels like it’s going really fast!”… true Rebekah style, she calmly assured me that it was all perfectly ok and she wasn’t worried at all. My next contraction I burst into tears “I can’t do this… I don’t think I can do this…”. My husband, doula and midwife all chimed in at once, I could do this. My ears were buzzing as I thought, this must be transition… my midwife checked my blood pressure… it was VERY high. She had me rest for a moment, checked it again and mid check I started a contraction… POP!!! My water burst with an audible whoosh as my body started pushing with all its might without my permission (1:14am-ish). I hollered for help to get my underwear off as my body continued to push. I felt sick. I felt like I was spinning. I felt my baby swiftly inch his was down. I heard the front door open and yelled “is that Sue?” (Our birth photographer)… and before anyone answered I hollered “Sue Run!!” As his head emerged. I took a pause realizing the worst was over and could breathe a little. A moment later my midwife said to me gently that we needed to get him out, he wasn’t handling this pause as well as she’d like. His coloring was changing and he wasn’t rotating as he should be. She needed me to move from the kneeling position to laying flat on my back. With everyone’s help I laid back and she instructed them to pull my legs up (what felt like up to my ears!) and out and I needed to push… a few hard pushes later that sweet relief of a baby on my chest was enveloping me. He arrived at 1:16am… holy.cow. That was insanity. My head was spinning, what just happened?! That was so fast! I was shocked and laughing and in awe that my body ejected a baby out of my body in seemingly no time at all. My legs and body started to jiggle as the postpartum cramps and endorphins and adrenaline rushed through my body. My baby was here and he was gorgeous!
June 11, 2021
Born @ 1:16 am (41wks3days)
9lbs 4oz and 22.5” long
Photos captured by: Susan Johnson, cdabirthphotographer.com
We had hoped to start an IV port before delivery due to super low iron levels, however things were so rapid we had no time to do… well basically anything. As you can see I never made it to the pool and there wasn’t much floor protection under me. After delivery I did bleed more than we’d hoped for and I received a few shots of pitocin and then they started an IV.
I’m not sure if it was the fatigue coupled with such a rapid birth and low iron levels but shortly after birth I started feeling dizzy and nauseated. I received some oxygen for a little bit as we controlled the bleeding. I felt slightly panicked for some reason about my bleeding and kept asking if it was ok. I was so worried about being separated from my baby. Over and over I asked if I was bleeding too much… if everything was ok… again, Rebekah kept assuring me she had it all under control and there was lots we could do and administer for bleeding before we even considered transferring me.
Once the placenta was out, the bleeding had slowed down and I felt strong enough to move we made our way to the guest bedroom to get settled, recover and do the newborn exam and me cleaned up! It was an absolutely amazing experience! My team was amazing once again!
I have SO many more pictures to tell the whole story, but, I’m basically nude. So I have kept those ones private. Home birth has been a dreamy experience for us and I have enjoyed every moment of my care through Lilac City Midwifery. Rebekah is confident, calm, knowledgable and so very capable. Her assistant, Emily, is kind and loving and gentle and has recently become the breastfeeding guru for the practice. My doula, Pam, a saint who just bleeds compassion and patience and knowledge. I couldn’t have asked for a more wild and exciting delivery but it was perfect! I am so thankful he’s here and healthy!