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(people referred to below: Robin is my doula and Bernie is my midwife)
On Tuesday 2/9/10 at 4 p.m. as I was getting dressed after taking a shower, my water broke. An event that I'm all too familiar with as this is the 5th pregnancy that my water has broke on it's own. The last 3 babies were induced after labor didn't start after rupture. I really wanted to avoid pitocin this time so decided I'd wait it out at home all night and if no labor by morning I'd head in. Well those plans changed once I learned that the sitter we had lined up couldn't come sit with my kids the following day I knew it would be too hard on my oldest to have all the kids all day (I assumed school would be cancelled due to the snow storm we were getting at the time) and the last thing I wanted during labor was to be focused on what was going on at home. So we decided to come in Monday night and just get induced so Rich could be back home by morning with the kids (we had someone that was able to stay the night with them).
We arrived at the hospital around 9 pm at which time I was 3cm's dilated, 80% effaced, no contractions. The pitocin was started at 10:25p.m. and Bernie arrived shortly after. I called Robin around 11:30 pm, the contractions weren't painful yet but I knew it would take her awhile to get here with the snow. I think she arrived around midnight, maybe a little after. I tried to get a little rest but just couldn't so we started walking the halls. It was sometime between 12:30 and 1 a.m. I think that I started feeling pain with the contractions. I think they were coming about 2-3 minutes apart at that time. I sat on the birthing ball for awhile and that wasn't helping so I put a pillow on the floor, got on my knee's, then leaned over the bed with each contraction. That helped quite a bit for awhile. Once they got even more intense I asked for the tub to be filled. I have no idea what time that was, I never looked at the clock again after about 12:30.
It was instant relief once I got in the tub. For quite some time the only part of the contraction I really felt was the peak and they were easy to get through. My husband, midwife and doula were all in the bathroom with me and we chatted between contractions. The only lights on were those in the tub itself so it was very relaxing in there. Things started getting more intense and Robin was awesome about talking me through each and every contraction, reminding me to relax everything and breathe baby down. If it weren't for that constant talking through - I would never have gotten through them. There was one point where the tears started flowing after a contraction and I couldn't hold them back. I remember Robin telling me it was the surge of oxytocin and that it was ok to cry and meant I was getting close. I really didn't think I was getting close, and never asked to be checked because I was too afraid I'd hear I was only 4 or 5 cm's and that would have made the labor harder. It wasn't long before I was able to stop the tears and fully focus on what Robin and Bernie were saying to me during contractions. I also noticed the pressure changing at that time. I had been feeling a lot of pressure in my bottom with each contraction, but now I was feeling the pressure move forward a bit too. Robin and Bernie kept saying it was 'close' but I just knew I still had years of labor to endure and they were just trying to make me feel better lol. It was around that time that I didn't really have much time between contractions anymore. Surprisingly though, I was still able to talk and make smartass comments between most of them I remember getting more vocal at this time too and moaning through each contraction. At one point Bernie told me to feel down there with the next contraction to see what I felt. So I did, and I felt something - but I told her I didn't believe it was his head lol. Once I realized it was, my anxiety heightened a bit but Robin was able to talk me through it. I remember her telling me over and over not to be afraid of the pressure but to work with it. I started to feel my body push with the contractions. I was never told to push, I never tried to push, my body just pushed and I went with it and before I knew it, my sons head was in my hands. Another push after that and the rest of him followed. Bernie helped bring him up to my chest. He was just so awake and alert We hung out in the tub for awhile, once the cord stopped pulsating Daddy cut it, then we got out to deliver the placenta due to bleeding issues in past deliveries. He started nursing shortly after and nursed for nearly an hour before drifting off to sleep. I had just a small tear and got I think 2 stitches.
All in all, I don't think things could have gone any better I would have loved to have avoided the pitocin, but in the end it all worked out and was much easier than my other poticin deliveries and I never once even asked for pain relief. Robin told me later that the pitocin level was never raised very high at all, so I'm sure that helped too. During the labor I never knew how far progressed I was or what time it was - and lacking that information is a huge part of what made things go so smoothly. Plus it was great not having any uncomfortable cervical checks My husband who is usually a stiff silent statue during my labors...........well he was still that way for this one lol but instead of standing by my head staring at the wall, he actually Watched his son be born and took a little video clip of it as well And no one had to pick up him up off the floor either lol.
He was born at 4:41 a.m. on February 10th weighing 7 lbs 11 oz, 18.5" long.
And here are the pics and a video clip (view at your own discretion - actual birth scenes)
It sounds like you had a pretty smooth delivery, I'm so glad you go the natural birth you wanted even with the pitocin. Beautiful pictures and montage! I think you've inspired to make a montage with the pictures I have from Anna's birth. Thank you for sharing!
Andrea, mom to Abigail (8) Annabelle (5) and Alexis (2)