My Home Birth Story
I feel horrible that my daughter is almost 4 months old and I’m finally sitting down to write her birth story. There are a lot of contributing factors (and I’ll be blogging about some of them in the near future), but for now we can attribute it to her being my 4th child.
I’m a VBAC mom. My Natural VBA2C story is here: I Did It!. After his wonderful birth experience, my husband and I decided to try for a home birth this time around. And boy, am I thankful we did!
To anyone who lives in the midwest, you’ll know how bad our winter was this year. My due date with this baby was January 4th, 2014. That day came after weeks of early labor signs, modified bed-rest, daily contractions, and pure exhaustion. But of course, no labor signs on my actual due date.
January 5th came, and along with it, regular contractions and a blizzard. I texted my midwife to let her know that I felt like the day was today. The whole snow storm I had fairly regular and uncomfortable contractions, but I took it easy because I did not want to deliver in the storm and make my midwife have to drive in the bad weather. I made it through the storm, though this poor lady did it on her own. Thank God she planned a home birth and had everything she needed at home already!
January 6th came and no labor signs.
January 7th around 2am, I woke up and felt my water break. I texted my MW to let her know, cleaned myself up, and actually was able to go back to sleep for a few hours.
I was awake and restless around 6am so I decided to get up, take a shower, and get on Facebook! I texted regularly with my midwife to give her updates, and around 7:30 I asked her to come with the bad roads. Even though I wasn’t having regular contractions, I had a gut feeling (and I’m sure glad I did!). During all this time, my husband was busy setting things up, and my 8 year old son was my labor coach! I’d sit at the computer chatting with friends, and when I was having a contraction I’d go up to the counter and rock while my son rubbed my back. My favorite memory of this was him rubbing my back while my 21 month old son was rocking next to me, mimicking my breathing!
My midwife arrived around 8:25, and asked how things were going. At that point my contractions were between 5-7 minutes apart, irregular, and nothing I couldn’t handle with my 8 year old. She monitored me during a contraction, checked the baby’s heartbeat, and then I went to the bathroom.
While in the bathroom, I had 2 pretty intense contractions and was so relieved to be sitting on the toilet (and only those of you who have had contractions on the toilet can understand this sentiment!). When I came out, I noticed that my midwife was not in the kitchen and must be helping my husband get set up in the bedroom. I then proceeded to have 3 back-to-back INTENSE contractions. I knew I couldn’t handle these anymore on my own or with only my son.
I made it to the bathroom in my bedroom and had another crazy contraction with the assistance of my midwife. My legs were shaking so bad that I knew I couldn’t do them standing any longer. I went into my bedroom and kneeled on the floor, laying over my birthing ball. I immediately felt my baby’s head descending and called for Allison (my midwife)!
She came, started pulling back my pants to check me, and confirmed that my baby was coming! My midwife was able to help me get my pants off enough to have access to catch my falling out baby! To quote my baby brother “I had an accident in my pants, but it was a baby!”
That picture is timestamped at 9:15am. Just 55 minutes after I was chatting on Facebook with friends about how I was excited I was going to meet my baby that day!
The best part was my shock at her being a girl! Even though we were being surprised this time, I had convinced myself I was having a boy. She was conceived around the time of my grandfather’s death, and her original due date was his birthday. We were going to name her Horace Albert William after my grandfather. But she decided she was too cute to be named Horace and wanted to be Lillian Lorraine instead!
My mom arrived minutes later (she stopped to get her tire fixed on the way!), and my second midwife arrived a few minutes after that. They were both surprised at what they walked in to!
I am so thankful that we decided to have a home birth. God really protected us. I had grown up hearing the stories of one aunt delivering my cousin in the car on the side of the road on the way to the hospital, and another aunt delivering her baby with an unintentional home birth while the paramedics were on the way. And while I joined the stories of insanely fast deliveries, at least mine wasn’t in a minivan in 5 degree temps on a partially cleared icy road!
And while the delivery was so crazy and fast that I can barely remember it, the bliss and slow-pace following was heavenly. My kids were able to come in immediately to meet their sister. They didn’t even realize what was going on, as I was only unavailable for 10 minutes or so!
We sent them out for a few minutes while I got cleaned up and assisted into my bed, but right away they were back in my room, sitting next to me, cuddling, and involved in the whole affair.
The funniest part is that after all this, they were all ready to move on with their day. Which was perfect, because I was definitely ready to take a nap!