On the morning of Sept. 16 (Sunday am) I noticed I was having consistent and rhythmic contractions starting pretty early in the morning. I didn’t look at the clock; however, I guess it was about 4 am. I stayed in bed as long as I could, and got up at 7 am to take a hot shower. I noticed as soon as I got up that the contractions weren’t changing but actually intensifying. They were very short and would start with a burning feeling near my cervix.
I kept expecting that they would go away as I had been having prodromal labor since 37 weeks. We decided we would take the morning and decide whether or not we were going to church. As I couldn’t sit through contractions David said we should probably stay home. They weren’t getting much more intense but they were sticking around. I decided to take a bath to see what they would do. They spaced out; however, when I got out of the bath they didn’t stop. After most of the morning I finally decided to call the midwife around 11 am. I did not want to as I kept saying, “it’s just going to go away as it always does.”I thought I was in early labor; however, for almost three weeks my body couldn’t kick into active labor, so I felt very unsure. I asked if Julie (the midwife) would strip my membranes to see if that would kick me into active. We told her we would meet her at the birth center around noon.
We arrived around 1220 and i was checked to be 3 cm, 100%, 0 station but not in active labor. She striped my membranes and we decided to go home, take a nap and watch the Bronco game. I suspected we would have a baby that evening when things finally picked up. We drove from Boulder to south Longmont and I asked David to stop and get Garbanzos. He went in to get us lunch and I had three back to back contractions that I could barley sit through. Most of the morning they had been 8-10 minutes apart and these were less than 2.5 min. apart. I struggled to make it home and by the time we were home I was crying through them. I wanted to get back in the shower but David said he wanted to call Julie (the midwife) and go back in. I could no longer talk through them at all and after being in the shower for less than 2 minutes I said I think we need to go. We drove back to Boulder (the worst car ride of my life) and arrived at the Birth Center at 150 pm.
I knew for sure I was in active and she checked to find me 5 cm and I could finally stay! I let the photographer and doula know that they could come and instantly wanted to get in the tub. They filled it for me and I was able to get in quickly. Everyone kept saying- “well have a baby by half time” or things like, “by the time that tub is full you’ll be 7 cm.” I really didn’t believe anyone. I knew it would be quicker; however, I sure didn’t think it would go that quickly. The tub helped so much, David did hip squeezes on me through every contraction. I felt it all in my back. Julie thought he was OP (sunny side up)- just like his brother; and the sacral pressure really helped. We didn’t know the sex of the baby, I was very sure it was a boy- but we really didn’t know. I got really excited at this point realizing after 16 long, long months (we had had a miscarriage a year before), we were finally going to meet our baby!
I was still able to talk in between each contraction and was laughing my doula and hubby. It was a very peaceful and calm setting. Very quickly the contractions shifted to another level and I knew I had to “go to the intensity” to meet my baby. It is something I tell mamas all the time. Intensity brings our babies and surrendering to that fact is the strangest feeling- but it is necessary to meet your baby. I was singing along to my worship music and knew we were getting close. All the sudden I started to feel pushy and told them at the end of the contractions I was pushing. It was my first time every experiencing Fetal Ejection Reflex (FER) which is where the body literally does all the pushing and you are along for the ride.
Julie wanted to check me, and I really did not want to be checked but she insisted. She checked me and told everyone in a whisper that I was 6/7. However, I was very aware of all that was going on around me and I heard her say it. I got super discouraged and said, “there is no way I am 6/7.” I knew the intensity I was feeling meant we were going to have a baby very soon. I felt very discouraged, the contractions were literally on top of each other. I kept saying I needed a break as they literally were not stopping. I wanted to give up and get an epidural. This is a huge reason I think getting checked can severely mess with your mind. I was very in tune with my body and I knew I was very close; but by getting checked, I got very discouraged and felt like there was no way I could do it any longer, even though moments ago I was dealing just fine. Julie felt like me getting out of the tub would help the baby rotate- the only way I could deal with the contractions were leaning forward or on my hands and knees because he was smack on my sacrum. They helped me out of the tub- I did not want to go, and felt like I couldn’t move and immediately went to hands and knees. They wanted me to get to the bed to use the peanut ball and see if we could get him to turn.
My doula and hubby carried me to the bed, as there was no break and I couldn’t walk. I laid on my side with the peanut for half a contraction, I felt him turn and was right back on hands and knees. In that instant I knew he was coming. Less than two pushes later (my body doing it all) he was crowning and hubby was guiding him out into this world. David was an amazing “midwife” and literally delivered our baby. He shouted “it’s a boy!” as he slid out into this world. He immediately handed him to me. The relief, the joy, the elation was unexplainable. I was not at all surprised he was a boy; and I was so thankful he was here! All that pain literally washed away in an instant.
My sweet kiddos got to come and meet him less than an hour after he was born; and it was a beautiful chaotic scene as we all welcomed in our sweet new baby with messy, loud, crazy children everywhere. It was perfect!
Beautiful birth photos by the ever talented: Season Hurd Photography