labor & birth @ home
Eleven months after my daughter was born, I finally got my period back. For five months I had been taking a pregnancy test every couple weeks because of this or that weird symptom, but nothing. Then, my period comes back on March 2nd, is deemed very late by the end of April, and the day after Mother's Day, I got my big fat positive. ANOTHER BABY FINALLY!
It seriously felt like I have been waiting forever but my daughter was only a year old and I was having another baby!!?! Immediately: stressed out. My family would be furious, we didn't even have our own apartment, my husband was in between jobs; oh my god oh my god oh my god.
By September, everything was perfect. My family had accepted it, we had an apartment, my husband had a great job, I was looking for a homebirth midwife. In no time, I fell head over heels for the only midwife in the area & life was good! That was until everything started to fall apart when my hands decided to fall asleep and stay asleep from 36 weeks on, my midwife was accused of misconduct when I was at 39 weeks, and my husband's hours were cut way short. So much stress!!! 40 weeks came and went, no signs of labor.
Everyone assumed that it was from stress and not knowing whether my midwife would be there, if I may have to go to the hospital, or if I would just let my son come quietly into the world without any help....41 weeks came....I was still in contact with my midwife and we decided that I should meet the hospital's midwife and have a non-stress test. Meeting her and the nurses at the hospital made me feel better, even though I'm terrified of hospital policies regarding birth. She swept my membranes and wished me luck. On Wednesday morning, January 8th, I woke up at 5am when my daughter screamed herself awake and as I was humming her back to sleep, I closed my eyes and started to visualize my boy making his way down & out. Suddenly: a contraction. Then another...and another. My mom was staying with me and I told her "don't get excited but I think this is real now." She got excited anyway and we were sure that today was the day.
The contractions never stopped and they got slightly stronger throughout the day. We relaxed and cleaned and played with my daughter until 7:30 when we started winding her down for bed. At 7:40, my mom was just about to lay down with her when I felt a strong, gurgling, intense POP and a SPLOOSH and then "OH MY GOD! Mom, my water broke!?" She hurriedly put my daughter to bed while I took off my pants and cleaned myself up. She texted my midwife and my husband who was at work and they both headed to the house. Suddenly, my contractions were coming every minute and a half and lasting a minute and a half. It was hell. Pure, agonizing, lower-back hell. I put all the weight of my upper body into my birthing ball while my mom put all of her upper weight into my lower back with her palms and a heating pad. It was wonderful. I breathed and stayed calm and thought happy baby thoughts and just let the pain roll down and out.
Another lifetime later, my midwife arrived and then my husband. I immediately demanded that he sit on the coffee table in front of me and I started to use him as my rock. I put my head down on his lap and my arms around his waist. With every contraction I dug my fingers into his back and just breathed. A couple times I said "put your hand on my back" or "okay stop touching me" and he obeyed. I changed positions when my midwife suggested it would help and started to squat with a blanket stretched out across my lower back to help with the pain. Just like my first labor, I swore that I would not birth laying on my back because it's so stupid and just goes against gravity, right? Well, just like with my first labor, I suddenly just NEEDED to be on my back. I got down on my favorite quilt with my husband at my right (same as with my first birth) and gripped his hand. My mom & midwife were between my legs and things started to get real. I just pushed and pushed and my baby was stubborn and didn't want to turn his head so I pushed some more and he came out without any cone-headedness and his shoulder kind of got stuck and then finally he flopped out and up onto my chest and "HI! YOU'RE SO GORGEOUS!"
At 10:18pm, a whopping eight pounds and eight ounces, twenty two tremendous inches long, my Wilder Hil was finally here after 41 weeks and two days. It was over & it had begun. We woke my daughter up to meet him and she cried with grogginess and confusion and 21-month-old's reaction to a newborn's crying. But in just a couple minutes, she and Daddy were sitting with Wiley and getting to know each other. It was beautiful. Within an hour, my midwife went home, I washed up and ate, then we all went to sleep in our own beds. My homebirth dream from the time I was 7 years old had finally come true.
You can read about my daughter's birth center birth at the link below: