mrsjjd: Justin's Home Birth
Wednesday, April 16, 2008 11:04 AM
"It took a lot of time and hard work, but as soon as I saw him none of the pain mattered..."
A Personal Decision
I knew long before I was ever pregnant that I really wanted a home birth. I knew I wouldn’t feel comfortable in a hospital environment, and the thought of someone else being in control of the most important, most personal event of my life just didn’t sit well with me. So, when we found out that we were pregnant, my husband and I (him begrudgingly) set out to find a midwife. Our doctor was the last person I expected to get a home birth midwife recommendation from, but he knew just the perfect person! When we met with her I instantly felt at ease, and knew we were headed in the right direction. She set us up with a Bradley method instructor who we started classes with, and we began to prepare for our home birth.
On September 26, 2007 I woke up around 6 a.m., which is very early for me. I felt uncomfortable and just couldn’t go back to sleep. I wasn’t feeling right, but everyone said, “You’ll know when it’s really it,” and this just didn’t seem to be "It." I called my husband just in case. He was at work two hours away, so I thought I better let him know that something might be going on. I said, “Honey, don’t leave work yet, but be ready in case I call later.” I had a regularly scheduled doctor appointment that afternoon. By the time I went in at 2 p.m., I was feeling more uncomfortable and a little crampy, but was still sure that this wasn’t "It!" I was shocked when he said, "Well, you're 7 cm...you're having a baby today." So, I hurriedly threw my clothes back on. I had to get home! It could have very well been the first time someone rushed home from the hospital to have a baby at home. I started dialing my husband, but he didn't answer. I left a panicked message saying, "Come home now, we’re having a baby!" Thank God he didn't listen to me, because as I turned the corner walking out the hospital door, I walked right into him.
Getting Ready for Baby
On the way home I called our midwife. I told her I was at 7 cm, and she said she would load her car and be on her way. We got home around 4 p.m. and I was still feeling pretty good. I put on my biggest, comfiest old tee shirt, and got myself a glass of juice, while my husband set up our bedroom for the birth. Our midwife arrived at 4:30 with all kinds of equipment. We all talked and I walked around the house for I’m not sure how long. I think it was around 5:30 or 6 p.m. when I started to not feel so great. I kept going between the shower and our bed. The shower was the only place I felt like I could handle anything. My wonderful husband was doing everything he could to make me feel better. Unfortunately I could not stand to be touched at all! The midwife checked me around 7p.m. and I was at 9 cm. She suggested I get in the bath tub, that maybe a change of environment would help me relax and speed things up.
Trying to Relax
The bath felt good for a while, and then I just felt miserable. The midwife checked me at 8 p.m., and I was ready to push. I never really got the urge to push like I thought I would. She asked if I was ready, and I said, "No, no, I'm scared, it's just going to hurt worse!" She assured me that I could do it, and that a lot of people feel better when they are pushing. She was right! After I started pushing the contractions were nothing compared to what they had been. I pushed in the tub for a little while, but I wasn't making much progress.
The midwife suggested that I try pushing on the toilet, since that is a "familiar place to push." The midwife broke my water while I was there, but it wasn't a comfortable place for me, even though the baby came down quite a bit. We then moved back to bed. I started pushing in a side-lying position, with my husband holding my leg (I pushed so hard against him with my leg the poor guy was sore for days). After only a few pushes, Justin's head was crowning. I thought, Yay! We're almost done right? Nope, the poor little guy was there for an hour and a half; my awesome midwife did perineal massage the entire time. I kept reaching down and I could feel him, almost here!
We Meet at Last
Finally after the longest hour and a half of my life Justin was born at 10:06 p.m. The midwife moved for my husband to catch him, and he put him on my chest. He was beautiful and pink, but not crying at all (we actually never heard him cry until he was three days old). It took a lot of time and hard work, but as soon as I saw him none of the pain mattered. I'm so glad I was at home, and got to take all the time I needed, because after all of that I didn't tear at all! In the hospital I probably would have been rushed and given an episiotomy.
Bathtime with Baby
After Justin was weighed and measured (9 lbs. and 21.5 in.), we both got into a warm herbal bath. Nothing ever has felt so good in my life! The midwife cleaned everything up while I was there. People always ask about the mess with home births, and I must say I never saw it! The midwife stayed for several hours just to make sure we were all okay, and helped us settle in. Then my husband, our beautiful little boy, and I all got to curl up in our own bed and go to sleep. Looking back I think it all went better than I ever thought it could have, and we will definitely be planning a home birth with our next child.