Birth stories and new baby pics. Our pregnancy memories - belly pics, ultrasound pics and nursery pics.
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I woke up at 4:50 AM with pretty painful contractions. I decided to get up and get in the shower to see if the water would slow my contractions as the past few days when I got out of bed and into the shower my contractions in the past would get a lot less intense or spaced quite a bit apart. This time was different, they continued to be about 3 minutes apart for about a minute. I called the birth center and they asked me if I wanted to come in, I said I would wait about an hour and if nothing changed then I would. They said that sounded good and they would start everything, planning on me coming in. They also informed me that they were waiting on the 4000 birth for the birth center and no one was there at the moment. My contractions only got closer together so I woke my husband up, who I had earlier told to go back to sleep. We both walked the dogs together – at which point the contractions came on much stronger and closer together. At this point I was almost certain it was the real deal!
We got into the car and headed towards the hospital. The drive was not much fun. I did not like having to stay stationary for the trip but obviously safety first! We live just under 20 minutes from the hospital and arrived around 7 AM. We left all of our stuff in the car and walked into the hospital and made our way towards the birth center. They took me to a triage room and checked me where I was 4 cm. They decided then to admit me. I was brought to the room where I would be having Micah. What is so amazing about the birth center I had Micah at is that it is actually inside of a hospital with a level 3 neonatal NICU. There is also a normal labor and delivery as well but in the birth center you have birthing tubs and “family beds.” I still feel so blessed to have access to that facility!
Once we got all set up in the room the hospital called a doula for me. They have a volunteer doula program and any patient who requests a doula can have one at their birth if one is available. I also called my parents to let them know I was in labor but that it would most likely be a long day so not to rush. My doula arrived about an hour and a half later. My parents and brother in law also came and just hung out in the room for a while. My labor was fairly easy at this point still. At around 2:30 PM I finally consented to being checked again and I was only 4 ˝ cm. I was very disappointed at this. The midwife decided to break my water to get things moving. At this point I asked all of our visitors to leave and my contractions quickly got a lot more intense. I labored for a little while longer and then decided to go get in the shower with a birthing stool. This is where I lose track of time… I was in the shower for a while and was getting increasingly uncomfortable. The midwife came and checked quite a bit later and I still only at a 5. My cervix was not moving forward but staying back so the baby was unable to put pressure to open up my cervix all of the way. My amazing midwife let me stay in the shower and she actually moved my cervix forward. They then went to get the birthing tub ready for me and I stayed in the shower for probably a little over an hour. I got in the tub and my husband got in with me. He was amazing. I have no idea how long I was in there but it was a long time. My contractions started getting so intense and I wasn’t sure how long I could stand them. If it weren’t for my doulas (I ended up having two) and my husband I don’t know how I would have continued. While I as in the tub I kept refusing to be checked but once hour 19 rolled around my pain was pretty intense and I was getting tired. I told them I wanted to be checked but I was scared I was still so far away as I had not been progressing. I knew if I was still not progressing that I would need something to allow me to get a little rest so I would be able to push later. I was just getting so so tired. I got out of the tub and was 9 ˝ cms! They even said I could start pushing if I wanted to. Pushing felt SOOOO good! It wasn’t painful. It was a relief. I knew the end was in sight and I didn’t have the intense pain with the contractions. I read a lot about natural birth before and had heard of the ring of fire and what not but honestly I never experienced any of that. The last few hours in the tub when I would have a contraction it was awful but I was able to relax in between but when I was pushing it really felt so much better then the pain I was experiencing before. We didn’t know why at the time but Micah was having a hard time. I pushed for 2 hours before he made his way into the world. Towards the end they told me I may need an episiotomy which I was very against so I pushed with all of my might. The nurse later told me in the 5 years she has worked there she has only seen 2 episiotomy – the hospital is very against them. Micah had this arms crossed in front of his face and his hands in fists. He was not very nice to mommy!! They asked Scott if he wanted to catch the baby so Scott actually grabbed our baby and Micah was immediately placed on my chest. Micah was born at 9:43 PM. I did not want the cord to be cut until after it stopped pulsing and since Micah was born without drugs he was able to clear his own airways and did not need any assistance. It took a little over 2 hours to stitch me and get the bleeding under control, during that time Micah just stayed on my chest. No one asked to take him. It was beautiful! Once they were done with me I let Daddy hold him and then they let our family in to meet our beautiful boy just after midnight. At this point the nurse also weighed him and he was 6 pounds 14 ounces and 20 ˝ inches long.
The morning after Micah was born was a whirlwind! I had no idea being the 4000th baby was such a big deal! We were brought giant gift baskets and local news stations and newspapers came by to interview us. Since the videos include personal information I am not going to post them here but a few of them have made it to my facebook page and I would be more then happy to send anyone who PMs me a link to the main video if we are not friends on facebook. It is pretty neat. After all of the hoopla died down I asked to go home but they wouldn’t let me. Micah needed tests 24 hours after his birth and with my tearing they needed to keep me as well. Later that day the birth center was full so they asked if it was okay if they moved us to labor and delivery. It wouldn’t be one big family bed but they would give us a double room so Scott could continue to stay with us. I agreed. The rest of the day family and friends were in and out to visit and the next morning I was so anxious to go home. They actually wanted me to stay one more day for my tearing but I told them I really wanted to go home so they compromised and let me go home late in the afternoon. Micah also had his ultrasound that morning where we found out his kidney was perfect, just a little low.
Micah was my first so I have no other birth experience to compare mine to but I feel so blessed to have had the experience I did. I am not going to say it was easy, or that the pain was not bad. I am not going to say that the water took my pain away. Those are all things that I had read. Maybe it is true for some but it was not for me. I will say that it was beautiful and magical and my son came into the world with the best beginnings he could. Everything about my birth was just so natural. The fact that I could move about my entire labor and hold my son for hours before anyone touched him was just amazing. He was able to clear his own lungs and was breast feeding within an hour of being born. He has also been such a good baby and is already hitting all of his milestones. He is the absolute picture of health. I don’t know what would have been different had I received an epidural or medication but I do know I would not change the experience I had. If you are thinking of going all natural I would encourage you to! I just wish every hospital had a birth center inside so every women could have the opportunity I did!!
And what you are really waiting for – pictures!
Before we got in the car I wanted to take one last belly photo
Micah is beautiful, Britt. He has your lips!! Well done mama on an all-natural birth. My hospital also has a birth center, though it's sort of pot luck whether there'll be a room free there when I go in....fingers crossed!
Fantastic story! And those facilities sound wonderful. Major kudos to you, mama, for planning to go natural with your first. You did awesome! And I agree, its not exactly an "aquadural " is it? A good distraction though and the weightlessness helps quite a bit. Congrats on your boy! He's a cutie!