If you’ve been reading my posts, follow my Instagram, or are my Facebook friend, you know I’ve been excited and impatient about my second daughter being born. The end of my pregnancy, I was just TOO excited. I couldn’t wait to hold her. But I thought I’d be pregnant for longer than I was.
Maybe baby girl picked up on my impatience, or maybe she was just impatient herself. At 38 weeks pregnant exactly, I surprisingly went into labor. That day I was feeling a little weird at first. I decided to take a walk, drink a couple glasses of raspberry leaf tea, and help with our horses, hoping I’d get things moving. I really didn’t expect much to happen because, even though I had noticed my belly hanging much lower and the pressure was getting very annoying, I didn’t have any sign that anything was happening. *TMI ahead* I hadn’t lost my plug. I wasn’t dilated when I was checked at 36 weeks, I didn’t even have any softening. I thought this baby was going to make me wait forever.
That night, while dishing up my plate for dinner to be exact, I experienced a strong contraction, that was in my lower stomach. I assumed it was a mixture of Braxton Hicks and stretching. I went about my night normally. I lay in bed watching Walking Dead, chillin’. I had a few more irregular contractions. No biggie, I had been having practice contractions from 14 weeks. I didn’t think anything of it. Later that night I started getting more and decided to time them. They were 20 minutes apart, 15, 12, back to 20, then 45, then a whole hour went by without one. I tried taking a shower to see if they would go away. I still had them, but they felt a lot better in the water. After I got out I was convinced this wasn’t the real deal because they were so irregular. I stayed in bed listening to my Hypnobirthing tracks, breathing through these “practice contractions” that happened to be getting stronger. I managed to fall asleep for an hour, then woke back up around 2 something am with more contractions, still irregular, but strong. I had a couple that were 20 minutes apart, then jumped to 10 minutes apart. I had only a couple that were 10 mintutes apart, but the strength grew. At one point I tried getting on my hands and knees and swaying my hips. But it just felt worse, and I couldn’t get up until it was over. At that point I decided maybe I should wake my mom, and just let her know what’s been going on. Real or not, she should just be aware. So I woke her and assured her she didn’t have to jump up and rush to the hospital or anything. However, right when I woke her up (3am), my contractions went from a couple at 10 minutes apart, straight to 2-3 minutes apart, strong and suddenly regular.
I stayed calm, did my breathing. I wasn’t afraid. In fact, I don’t know if it had even hit me at that point that I really was in labor. I even did a little bit of make up before leaving. At 3:30 am we headed to the hospital. The whole ride was not easy. We drive a large Ford, diesel, with bad breaks and barrings, which causes the truck to bounce and shake way more than it should. A rough ride indeed. I was having regular very strong contractions, with slight pressure, the whole way there. I cannot recall how long it actually took to get there. But I’m sure we made it there around 4 am. I walked through the doors with my mom, and stopped to hold the wall while I swayed to a contraction. A male nurse with a pretty sweet beard came out and helped me into a wheelchair. I was hoping to walk, but looking back, it would have taken forever to get there if I were walking. We made it to labor and delivery and I got into a room quickly. I didn’t want to be hooked up to everything the whole time, and the nurse assured me it would only be 20 minutes (liar). I changed into the robe, and climbed into the bed and was hooked up to the monitor. Also, I had tested positive for the Group B Strep, so I had to get an IV for antibiotics. My contractions continued, stronger. I was informed my doctor wasn’t on call and couldn’t come in. I was disappointed because I didn’t want to have to explain or defend my birth plan to someone new. Luckily, the wonderful doctor who was there, kindly read my birth plan sheet, nodded, and seemed pleased.The nurse wanted to check me to see how far along I was. Now listen ladies, if you’re going to have someone check your cervix while you are having strong contractions every 2 minutes, make sure they don’t have the worlds shortest fingers. I swear she was purposely digging around in there just to torture me. Anyways, I was 4 cm. 4 cm! I expected to be much farther by then. At that point, I admit, I said, “I don’t know if I can do this naturally thing if this is what it’s like at only 4 cm”. But, I swallowed my bitchassness, and declined the pain medication. 5 minutes later I was checked again because I was having more pressure. 7 cm. In 5 minutes I went from 4 to 7 cm. It was all going so fast. I remember this was the point where the contractions got to their worst. I stayed in my zone, and didn’t let myself tense up. I did start vocalizing a little, because for me, it helped with the pain. Not to mention my body started shaking uncontrollably. I remember holding my right hand up for some reason. The nurse held it. I never squeezed her hand or put any pressure on it at all. I kept as relaxed as I could manage. Suddenly, with every contraction my body was pushing itself. Everyone always says, “Once your body is ready to push, there’s no stopping it”. SO TRUE. I never purposely pushed throughout my labor. I let my body do whatever it wanted to do all on it’s own. The doctor kept speaking in hypnobirthing terms, which made me much more comfortable because it told me she had experience with this kind of birth and approved. She just sat and waited for my cues, encouraging me with birth affirmations I had been listening to for the past weeks to prepare for this moment. I was so grateful she was there. At that point, I held up my hand and cued the doctor over because something was happening. She checked and said, “Baby is right there”. I knew it. My step dad exited the room, and my mom joined me by my right side. I first tried the side laying position while my body pushed my baby down. It wasn’t very comfortable for me, and the awesome doctor (I’ll be referring to her as the awesome doctor from now on), read my mind and asked to put the squat bar on. It was quickly assembled and they helped me up. My body felt weak and shaking. I could hardly hold myself up. I managed to get my arms around the bar, holding my weight. I think I was on my left knee, while I rigged my right leg up on the side of the bar, holding it in place so it would stay out of the way. I loved that I wasn’t being told what to do. I did what my body wanted to do and what I felt I needed to. That was when shit got real. Every contraction, my baby was moving down and I was vocalizing. It felt like I was being loud, but my mom said I really wasn’t loud at all. I did remain calm at all times. I wasn’t afraid. There was only 4 or 5 pushes until the ring of fire graced me with it’s presence. The awesome doctor asked if I’d like to feel her head. I wanted to but replied with, “I can’t let go”. I was trying very hard to hold my body up. My eyes were closed the whole time. Within seconds I was feeling my baby coming out into the world, and before I knew it I was swooping her up into my arms with everyone telling me to be careful of the cord. I lay back with my just born baby on my bare chest, and kept telling her how beautiful she is and how much I love her. I was amazed. Amazed that I had really just done that.
October 21st, at 5:53 am, Lumen Jane was welcomed into the world.
She laid on my chest, and naturally began to breastfeed when she was ready. Her father wasn’t able to make it to the birth, so I was lucky enough to cut her umbilical cord after it was finished pulsating. When she finished eating her first meal, she was weighed and bathed. A dainty 5 lbs 14 oz. And 19 1/2 inches long.
Because it happened so fast, I didn’t get all the antibiotics that I was suppose to receive before she came. So, I had to stay two nights. I really didn’t want to be trapped at the hospital, but the nurses were so kind, helpful and respectful, it wasn’t that bad.
After I gave birth, the awesome doctor held my hand and told me I was amazing. She paid me what was probably the best compliment I had ever received. “Most girls your age don’t have their shit together to have a hypnobirth”. Then continued to call me a “dream patient”. As you can imagine, I was over the moon.
I was blessed with an awesome birth, and awesome people around me.