It is International Day of the Midwife. In recognition of the day, I wanted to share my home birth story from March 23, 2008, in honor of my midwife, Merrie.
Well, I had the baby at 2:57 Easter Morning. And the experience was amazing and wonderful. Everything went so well. And it wasn’t as painful as I worried it would be.
This was my first experience with a completely natural birth at home, and really, it was by far the best birth of the three that I have had.
On Saturday morning, I woke up and just knew that I was going to be in labor. I have no idea how I knew, but I did. I went into nesting mode and cleaned up the house like crazy, which I am so glad that I did.
I also started having contractions. They were irregular throughout the day, but they stayed put no matter what activity I did, sitting, standing, laying down. So, I really thought that this could be it. I didn’t call my midwife, however, until 8:00 that night, after I had more consistent contractions. She had me time them for awhile and call her back. At 9:30 P.M., my midwife, my friend and doula, Tiffany, and my other friend, Sara, came over to be with me during my labor and delivery. At around that time, I was checked and was 5 centimeters, so my contractions throughout the day had made progress, which was nice to know.
For the entire labor, my contractions stayed about 4-5 minutes apart and lasted about a minute, and were very manageable.
It was fun having my friends around, because it was very social. We were constantly cracking jokes and having a good time.
It was so wonderful being at home. I got to eat if wanted to, and drink fluids. I got to hang out in an environment that was relaxed. And I felt safe the entire time. And I became a big fan of the pool. It felt so relaxing to be in the warm water.
The gals all kept talking about how calm and peaceful I was during contractions. Sometimes, they couldn’t even tell I was having one. In fact, my friend, Sara, took several pictures of me in the middle of a contraction, so that I could see how peaceful I looked.
From past experience, I kept waiting for my contractions to get really intense or right on top of each other. I began to think that maybe I wasn’t progressing. My contractions seemed to be easy, although they did hurt.
I even joked at one point that I was bored. My midwife found that comment to be rather funny. She mentioned that she had never heard anyone in labor say that before.
After making that comment, however, we decided I should be checked again. And we found that I was 9 centimeters dialated and fully effaced. The only thing keeping me from 10, was my bag of waters keeping the baby up a bit. I couldn’t believe that I was at 9 and not feeling miserable. So we headed back to the pool to work on trying to push and break my waters.
I can’t remember how many pushes it was, but I know it went fast. It did hurt, but it wasn’t as painful as I had thought that it was going to be. And if you had told me as he was coming out, that he was 9 lbs., I wouldn’t have believed you.
It was such an amazing experience! I am so thankful for those who helped me bring Christian into the world that day! Midwives Rock!