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Where to start. Well, On Friday the 12th I went to my prenatal appointment and asked Jean my midwife to help me naturally induce the pregnancy. I wanted to have the baby before Sunday so both of our kids could be there together to meet the baby for the first time. She was unable to strip my membranes because I was only dilated to a 2 and 80 % effaced. She stretched my cervix and told me to breast pump for 30 mins at a time and walk for 30 mins and just do this off and on for the weekend. When she stretched me it caused some bleeding. That lasted through Saturday.
Well I went home and pumped and walked and sat on my birthing ball and anything else I could think of and nothing. I did start contracting pretty well but nothing regular.
I started losing my plug on Saturday evening through Sunday. On Monday night I had a lot of bleeding and again when I woke up Monday morning along with contractions all night long. So on Tuesday I went to see my midwife worried about all the bleeding. It apparently was quite normal and all the induction stuff I did had done nothing for me. I was still 2 cmís and 80 %. Not happy about this I headed home and decided to quit trying to get the baby here and just deal with the nightly contractions. They got worse each night but would calm down during the day. On Wednesday night our son came over for his weekly overnight stay. So, as a last ditch effort I ate Eggplant Parmigiana at our favorite restaurant for dinner and afterwards Chad and Jaden went to the Mavs game while Alexis and I headed to hang at the book store. Once we got home and Alexis headed to bed I put on music ďRapperís DelightĒ which I believe is the longest song I have ever danced to and danced my heart out. I used every dance move I have ever known and made some up along the way. Most importantly I wiggled swayed and rotated my hips at all times. I danced for about 7 mins until I just couldnít breathe anymore and then sat down and relaxed. I went to bed about midnight with some of the same contractions I had been experiencing. I had to get up feeling like I had to pee about every 20 mins but was able to lie back down and sleep through the contractions. That is until about 2:30 in the morning. I finally gave up lying down. I just couldnít stand contracting in bed any longer and hoped if I got up we could get things moving.
Oh was I right. Let me start with my baby had been posterior (sunny side up) since my 8th month. His body was on my right side early on and after religiously sitting on my birthing ball all night every night for 3 weeks he finally swung over to my left side about 37 weeks.
So once out of bed it seemed every 6 minutes or so I would contract normally. They hurt but I could talk through it. The problem was, every time I changed positions or sat on the toilet (I had to pee constantly and couldnít) I would have another contraction. So they where 6 minutes for 2-3 contractions then I would have a few 2 minutes apart. The extra contractions were all in my back. Ugh. I just didnít think I was in real labor. I mean I wasnít contracting regular and I could talk through them just fine. I even walked out to my truck and got my heating pad we had packed and came in and got it working to lay on my back. When regular contractions would hit I was able to walk through them. When the back contractions came I would throw myself on the nearest surface and breathe through it.
Around 4 am I woke up Chad (he had asked for at least 4 hours of sleep, so it was perfect timing) and laid down with my back against him trying to get some relief from the back pain. He talked me through using my breathing techniques. The pain was strong but I could still talk. At this point I was timing them at about 4 minutes apart sometimes 5 minutes. Once I couldnít handle laying down anymore I sat on my birthing ball and labored a bit. I tried to get at least 30 mins of regularish contractions before I called Kathleen my midwife. Well I called and she didnít answer. She called back a few minutes later and asked a few questions I had a contraction while talking to her and could still kind of talk through it although at some point in the contraction I had to stop and breathe. She had a lady already at the birth center in labor using the birthing tub room I had planned on using. I was a little disappointed but figured I might have time to take the room when she was done. I asked if I could at least use the shower bathroom if I needed it. She said I could come in if I wanted or labor at home a bit more. I think from the sound of me, she and Chad both thought I was dilated to a 3 or 4. Well I had strep b and needed antibiotics at least 4 hours before giving birth. So we called a friend to watch the kids while they slept and I headed in. When I went to the car and got in the front seat I had a contraction that was so strong my whole body went straight. I hurt so bad I tried to throw myself in the back seat. After it subsided I waddled myself out of the car and into the back seat. At some point in that drive I went from talking during the contractions to asking Chad very unkindly to be quiet so I could breathe. He had an uncanny way of asking questions the moment I was in the middle of a contraction. Which would have been fine if I were not sprawled out in the back of my SUV on a bumpy road kicking the door in pain wanting to vomit. They back pain was awful. The stomach contractions were fine. I found if I sang through them it distracted me. Sadly the song changed during the next contraction and to my disappointment I had to figure out another way to hold down the eggplant I had eaten earlier. At this point I was thinking this is going to suck when it comes back up. After 30 mins of pure hell in the car we finally arrived at the birthing center. I offered Chad a margarita if he sped but he promised we would get there quicker without the police chase. So he won and didnít get the reward. Once at Inanna I was contracting a lot. I really donít know how far apart they were. I had quit counting. All I knew is that the pain was enough to get me on my knees every time.
Kathleen was awesome. She was so sweet and soft spoken she calmed me down instantly. Chad and Kathleen somehow got me into my birthing room (which is the exact room I didnít want) and I got on my hands and knees on the bed. After a few minutes she checked me and to her surprise I was dilated to a 7 and 90% effaced. Chad was such a trooper through the whole thing. I know I am more in love with him now than ever. He was slapped at, pushed, pulled, lost circulation in his hands, had claw marks in his neck and still just did what I asked or demanded and encouraged me the whole way through.
So at this point it is about 6 am. I labored for the next few hours moving through contractions one at a time. Some I could breathe through some (the back labor) all I could do was hang on and hope it left soon. I donít think there is a pain coping technique in the history of the world other than Chad or Kathleen and sometimes both squeezing my hips together that could ever bring relief to those kinds of contractions.
At some point in all this Kathleen checked me again and I was dilated to a 9 but still had some cervix in the way. When she was finished checking me my water broke and I knew there was no turning back. So happy and ready to start pushing I gave it a try and it felt so much better to push. So I did. Just gently pushed and pushed to relieve the pain. Well the pushing was getting me nowhere fast so Kathleen asked if I wanted her help and I immediately said yes please. She used her fingers to push my cervix out of the way and had me push. We did this for a bit and it didnít do anything other than make me hurt worse. We had two issues. 1-My baby was facing up instead of down and laying on my spin and 2-my cervix just wasnít ready yet. So I had to labor more when all I wanted to do was push. I sat on my birthing ball and laid my head on the bed and labored. I donít know how long it felt like eternity. At some point I got back on the bed and laid on my pregnancy boppy pillow on my belly. It was so nice to just lay there. Then it all started up again. The pain from the back labor was even worse. I could barely breathe it was so bad all I wanted was to throw up and go home. I couldnít fight it. I couldnít move away from it. I couldnít manage it. It was awful. Luckily my time had come. It is funny that I remembered the story of Inanna right about this time. A story told to us at birthing class by Jean one of my midwives who just so happens to be the woman who had just arrived and was about to save me from the hell I was in. She went and got 2 more ladies to help her. She as always asked first do you want me to help get your baby here? Yes oh please yes I will do whatever you say and I did. She put me on my back again. Told me to get my knees to my ears and had a lady on each side of me helping keep my legs back. Chad was by my left side Jean down helping guide the baby. She reached in with one had and the other on my belly and turned Christian as best she could. She wasnít sure it worked but it was all we had. She then coached me through pushing. If she said push harder I did it. When she said back off I did it. When she said push with all you have I did it. I just wanted it over. I wanted him out. I wanted the back pain to stop. I had one arm linked through the ladies on my right and one arm wrapped around Chadís neck with fingers clawed down into his neck and I lost myself for the next I donít know how long. I remember only screaming the last few pushes. I watched everything. I watched as much as I could as my baby emerged. It was the weirdest craziest thing I had ever seen. And I couldnít stop watching. Eventually his head emerged. The burning from the stretching was crazy. But it was out and in 2 more pushes my baby arrived in the world screaming and hollering for the next 3 hours he cried. Seeing him there after all the work I had done was the most amazing experience of my life. I cried and laughed at the same time and felt so much relief. I just couldnít stop crying. Everyone was so supportive during my pushing encouraging me the whole way. A water birth would have made the pushing so much easier. But I think easy just wasnít in my cards this time. The amazing feeling of pushing out an unpushable delivery and completing the hardest task of my life has changed me in a way I could have never imagined. I finally got my mommy switched turned on. It is crazy because I have been a mommy for 12 years and have yet to have my switch flipped. But now I get it. I see the difference of medicated and unmedicated birth. I am a calmer mom now. It is so sudden. I am calmer and more loving if that is possible with my older kids and just so in awe of this little baby. I am sure I left a whole lot of stuff out of my story I just donít remember everything.
I remember how much love I felt from every person in my room. Not only my husband but from my midwives and birthing assistants. They were all amazing and wonderful. I am so lucky to have both Kathleen and Jean in my birth experience. Each was there exactly when I needed them to be.
Oh, the reason I was unable to have a water birth is there was a lady in the birthing suite who had been there since 10 am Wednesday morning. This is very rare to have more than 1 person laboring at the birth center at a time. I am one of very few women who have had this experience. Because of this Kathleen exhausted from being at the center since about 8 pm the evening before need to leave right around the time I needed Jeanís strength and command to get me through. Because of this poor woman who eventually had to transfer to the hospital around the time I was going home I was able to make it through my posterior birth with only 3 hours and 36 minutes of laboring at my birthing center. My son Christian Jeffrey was born on Thursday Feb 18, 2010 at 9:36 am. He was 6 pounds 7 ounces 20 inches long.