Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Mother's Unassisted Homebirth Story

Well guys this one was a speedy one! Wednesday night I noticed some "contractions". I hesitate to even call them that because they were the ones that are FUN. You know, "ah I feel something! Labor is great! Lets play around with timing them!" Chris got on the computer and started looking up Gaelic middle names for boys and girls which is a tradition for us now. We wait until I start feeling "something" and then he starts looking for names. I had contractions off and on all night and in spite of that I slept GREAT. Better than I had in months. I tend to see that as a big sign that the birth is going to happen in a couple days. I tend to get blessed with a few nights of great sleep at the very end.

So, Thursday I woke up to more fun contractions, no pain, just squeezes, and spent the day sitting in bed by the fire knitting. It was a really lovely day for me and I had a good time just enjoying the very end of my pregnancy and being excited that the baby would be coming soon. Chris made yummy Indian food for dinner, which I adore, and we watched lost after which I decided I was going to bed early. My squeezes had petered out and I wasn't feel anything anymore. I had another great nights sleep and I woke up at about 5:30am to pee. I didn't have any contractions then and immediately went back to sleep.

About an hour later I was dreaming and had two strong REAL contractions (the ones that HURT! LOL) and woke up having to poop. I immediately knew this was it and headed into the bathroom. I decided to let Chris sleep for as long as possible and I was sure I didn't want the kids awake and crazy, so I headed upstairs with some spare bedding for a nest on the floor and a small bag of birthy stuff (washclothes, tinctures, cord clamps, etc) I looked at the clock and it was a bit after 6:30am. As tends to be the pattern for me I spent the next half an hour pooping with every contraction. They were probably about 2-3 minutes apart and 45seconds to 1minute long. After I felt like I was finally "cleaned out" I stood through a few contractions and thought about calling Chris up. I didn't though. I wanted to wait as long as possible, I really feel like laboring is less stressful when I'm by myself.

So, I tried some hot washcloths on my lower belly during contractions but they just weren't hot enough to really dull the sensations. Maybe a super hot heating pad would though. I'll have to try that next time around. I had toyed with the idea during this pregnancy of really trying to SLOW things down and keep the whole process from being so fast and overwhelming. I though maybe laying down would do this, but yet again once I'm IN it, there was no way I was going to lay down. I was afraid really to get stuck in any position but standing when a contraction would come on.

I was trying to stay out of the shower for as long as possible because I didn't want to not have hot water when the contractions got "stronger" and I really needed a change, but I finally decided they were strong enough to warrant hopping in. And it did really help. I love the noise of the water especially. Escaping to the shower has always seemed to work for me and I've had 3 babies in there now! I was only in the shower about 20-30 minutes and during this time had a few of those evil contractions where there isn't really any break. They just die down to a humming cramp before building again (man I hate those, and I always start cursing the people who say "yes, labor hurts, but you get breaks!" right about then.

My breath started to catch and I was amazed that I was almost done. Even while cursing about it hurting, I was also thinking, wow, I am so blessed to have such easy labors. This is really nothing. I felt the change in contractions where they went from hurting to just......moving the baby down, and I felt my body start to push. I started to push and then remembered that I really wanted to see what happened if I DIDN'T consciously push along. So I kind of belly danced instead, moving my hips in figure eights and big round circles. I felt the baby rush down through my pelvis, really SO cool!

I thought again briefly of calling Chris up. I didn't want him to miss the birth of the baby, but I wanted even less to have the kids stampede upstairs into my tiny space and I didn't want to interrupt the process either. I had been almost completely silent up to this point and it just felt right to see it all through on my own. I shut the water off and knelt down as the baby crowned. The end was really glorious this time. I had no pain at all. Maybe 2 easy contractions, no ring of fire, no shooting pains down my thighs (YAY!) just half a baby head before I even knew it. I really noticed the baby turn this time too which was very neat for me. I don't remember noticing how that happened before, and then the baby splooshed out....... Not much of a story really!

Just a Super easy, quick, uneventful birth! Chris woke up when the baby cried. Durian only cried once, almost like he was calling his dad. I asked him the time and said it was 7:40am. The placenta came easily this time probably about twenty minutes after the birth. And Chris had fun bumbling around starting the fire, running me a bath, directing the kids to collect things, boiling the scissors and doing general husband/dad type stuff. Bless him, he's a good cook too.

The few days after the birth were challenging this time. The afterpains were really killer, as bad as labor, if not worse. I was joking with Chris that he didn't miss anything at all, he just gets to help me through labor AFTER the baby comes instead of before. He did some acupuncture which seemed to really help. I don't find afterease to do much of anything for me even though I started guzzling it immediately in anticipation of the pains. I had trouble with my pelvis too which seemed to be really off and causing me lots of pain to walk or even to roll over in bed. It's slowly gotten a bit better and I'll get an adjustment soon.

So that's it! :) Durian is of course adorable, we're all in love and he's nursing, pooping, sleeping and all that newborn stuff. He is a bit more demanding than my last two, but that's okay, I've done demanding newborn before too. :)

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