Amanda’s Home Birth

July 22, 2011

My “guess date” for this little child to arrive was in early June.  I was hoping to have a May baby, but I also knew that I did not want to be induced, so I was content letting this baby come when she wanted. I had many contractions (we like to call them surges in hypnobirthing) throughout the last couple months of pregnancy, many of which started off feeling like the real thing.  Towards the last week or so I’d have an hour where the surges would come about five minutes apart, but then they’d die down.  It finally got the point where I decided that I didn’t really know my body at all.  As my “guess date” passed, I tried to stay positive.  I tried not to stay home too much.  I got out and tried to be as social as possible.  This, I have to say, was the hardest part, because by this time, everyone knows you’re overdue and has to make some comment about being late or when is that baby going to come, as if I knew.  My friends and family were good to be careful with how they worded things around me.  So overall, I was feeling good.

One Sunday after church, my mom took my kids and I tried to rest at home.  After resting, I rubbed some oils on my belly (hoping to get things going), then went for a walk with my husband.  During the whole walk, my tummy was tight and contracted.  I thought things might get going, but as soon as I arrived at my mom’s house things slowed down.  Later that evening, however, I had another hour of good surges about four minutes apart and lasting about 20 seconds.  But this only lasted that hour.  When we got back to my house and got the kids down to bed, I began to have more surges.  My mom had come over, sure that I was going to go into labor for real anytime.  We played a game of Dominion and timed the surges.  Again, for an hour, they were 4-5 minutes apart and lasted about 20-30 seconds.  After that hour, they slowed down and then stopped.  I sent my mom home and decided to go to bed.  I rested quite comfortably all night only having a surge or two through the night.

The next day, Monday, I woke up feeling good.  I continued having a few random surges, but nothing to indicate that this baby would come soon.  My friend had offered to come and take my kids for the afternoon, which I was so grateful for.  Once the kids left, I began to have more surges.  These surges were much like the ones from the night before.  They lasted about 40 seconds and came about every four minutes.  I decided I should get in my birthing attire (yes, I had carefully thought about what I’d wear during birth.  A girl still has to look cute as she’s bringing a baby into the world).

During these surges I continued to do my “surge breathing”, which helped me stay calm and relaxed.  The surges weren’t painful.  I was excited to know that with each surge, I was getting closer to seeing my baby.  After a little more than an hour, the surges started to get about three minutes apart and I was pretty sure they weren’t going to stop.  We called Heather Shelley, our midwife, to let her know. At this point, the surges were getting stronger and harder to breathe through.  I decided it was time to get in the bathtub.  This was probably around 12:30 or 12:45.  Oh man, I can’t even tell you how great it felt to get in the water.  As the tub filled up, my husband poured water over my belly.  It was heavenly.

At this point I think the surges were coming pretty quickly.  Janae, another midwife, got there first right as I was getting in the tub.  Heather arrived about 10 minutes or so after that (I could totally be off on the times, as I was not focused on watching the clock).  I was getting uncomfortable by this time.  My arms and legs felt very tingly and were going numb.  They gave me some oxygen, which helped a ton.

Although I’d always envisioned reclining slightly in the tub to give birth, it didn’t feel right, so I ended up either on my hands and knees or in a squatting position.  I soon began to feel like I needed to push.  Mentally, this was the hardest part for me.  By this time, my water had not yet broken (in all of my previous pregnancies my water was broken for me).  For some reason, in my mind, I didn’t think I could push since my water hadn’t been broken yet.  I kept thinking, “what am I going to do, push the whole bag of water out?”  I kept asking for my water to be broken so that we could get this thing over with.

My husband kept reminding me that we didn’t want my water broken.  Finally, my mom (who was working all the cameras at the time) looked at me in the eye and said, “Amanda, stop worrying about your water.  If you feel like you need to push, then push.”  So I did.  I gave a little push, and I think my water broke just a few minutes after that.  I then felt like I need to push some more.  I got up on my knees and gave another push.  As I’m remembering it, it all went so fast that it’s hard to put it into words.  But as I watch the video back it seems as though there was some time that passed in between the few pushes.  Being on my knees in the water, there wasn’t a lot of room in the tub for her to be birthed, so the midwives asked my husband to get in the water to help hold me up a little higher.

He sat on the back edge of the tub and put his arms underneath mine.  I was able to rest my arms on his legs a bit and give another push.  Within a few minutes Hannah’s head was out.  Again, there wasn’t enough room for the rest of her, so I got in a squatting position, but at this point I was too tired to lift myself up.  Hannah’s head had been out for about a minute and a half and they needed to get the rest of her out, so Clark gave me a big lift up, and as soon as he did, Hannah came plopping right out.  Sounds kind of yucky, but that’s really how it was.  She kind of just plopped!

I immediately got to hold her and love her.  She was kind of blue and dusky (which I hear is common for water birth babies), so it took her a few minutes to pink up.  Her heart rate was kind of low, but slowly got back to normal.  They gave her some oxygen, and my husband even got to give her a little one breath mouth-to-mouth to fill her lungs a bit.  Within five minutes or so, Hannah was doing great.  She was perfect.  She had vernix covering her head.  It went from her eyebrows all the way to the back of her head.  She looked like a little alien.  Her fingers and toes were long with beautiful, long nails at the end of each one.

After we cut the cord and fed her, she was weighed and measured.  I expected her to be pretty big.  My first child was four days late and weighed 7-15.  My second was a day early and weighed 8lbs even.  So I figured with Hannah being five days late she’d be over 8 lbs, but she wasn’t.  She was 7lbs 7 oz.

{ 0 comments… add one now }

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: