First of all I just want to start off by saying…Trust your body and your baby always…Don’t let anyone ever tell you that your baby is ‘too big’ to birth if it’s not what you believe. No one knows your body and your baby better than YOU!
Our little (BIG) baby girl is finally here! She arrived at 41 weeks and is super healthy and beautiful! I want to share a little bit of my birth history with you. My story starts almost 4 years ago with the birth of our firstborn son, Nolan. We had planned on a natural childbirth but all that went out the window upon entering the hospital and after 13 hours of labor and 3.5 hours of pushing Nolan was born via C-section due to baby being malpositioned. He was 8lbs. 5.5oz at birth and very healthy.
In July 2009 we found out we were expecting baby #2! We did all the right things and hired a doula and took Bradley Method classes and were preparing ourselves for an unmedicated VBAC….We almost got the birth experienced desired but plans went south, yet again when she wouldn’t descend and after 21 hours of labor, 7 hours of pushing she was delivered via forceps at 10lbs. 5oz.
Both of these births resulted in very healthy babies but horribly awful and deathly allergic reactions in myself due to unknown meds given after the births. That is the short of my previous experiences. I knew that any subsequent births would not take place in the hospital…The hospital is for sick people, and I am not sick!
When we found out we were expecting for the 3rd time in April 2011 and we knew we would be be planning things differently. We knew that the best plan of action was for me to stay the hell out of the hospital and to have this baby in the comfort of our own home. After many struggles of finding the right midwife and dealing with supportive and then unsupportive OBs, we finally had the right birth team constructed and moved forward with our plans for HBAC (homebirth after cesarean). We hired an amazing midwife from Wisconsin and was also being seen by my OB since our midwife lived 4 hours away from us.
I had a great pregnancy and knew we would be expecting another rather large baby by term. At 40 weeks, I consented to an ultrasound/biophysical profile to check fluid levels on baby and got the news that they had expected baby to at least be 12 lbs. but were thinking she would be more in the 12-15 lb. range! An immediate repeat C-section was recommended and I got all the scare tactics of how baby would not make it and blah blah blah, “babies THAT big do not come out in one piece vaginally.” Again, blah blah blah…That appointment did shake me up quite a bit and I really didn’t know what to do at that point.
Obviously I wanted to do what’s best for our baby but didn’t quite know what that was anymore. I know there is a huge margin of error with late term ultrasounds but I knew baby was at least 10 pounds at that point and probably a little bigger. I got online and posted my story on the ‘Birth Without Fear‘ facebook page and got hundreds of responses of people supporting me and cheering me on saying, I knew my baby and my body best.
My husband, Catlin also never lost faith, not for one second..After talking with him, our midwife and the rest of the world wide web we were back on track! I had weeks and weeks of prodromal labor and our midwife and her amazing assistant who is also an RN traveled to us to make sure all was well and to wait for labor to start since we knew it would be soon. This was Monday, the 9th, 2 days before ‘real’ labor. Okay, now moving to the good stuff……….
On January 11th at 5:00am I woke up to a very strong contraction that I knew was different from the ones I had been having for 3+ weeks..I went back to sleep and then 5 minutes later another one…even more intense. I flew out of bed and asked Cat to draw me a bath and told him what was going on…We headed downstairs and the contractions began to pick up. Got in the bath and told Cat to call the midwife (who was staying at a nearby hotel) just to let them know things might be happening.
He decided not to call since I had on/off regular contractions for weeks prior and he wasn’t quite sure this was it…I, on the other hand knew we would be meeting our baby very soon. Contractions picked up right away to about 3 minutes apart and I was already having to vocalize through them.
I think at that point Cat finally agreed ‘this was it’ and he called the midwife. I knew at that point that THIS WAS IT! Midwife arrived at 8ish and immediately knew things were moving so they got their supplies set up and the birth pool filled. I got in at 8:30ish and tried to relax through contractions but was already beginning to feel the urge to push with each one.
This was amazing as it was something I had never experienced….you know, that urge to push…Something I was never able to feel in my previous births since I was all drugged up with the epidural…So happy to be at home this time….
Anyway, after having a few grunty pushes and switching positions frequently all of a sudden it felt as if my vagina was trying to throw up a bowling ball and I flipped from hands and knees leaning on Catlin to squatting and just kept ppuuuuuuuuusssssssshhhhhhiiiinnnnnngggggg!
I exclaimed, “SOMETHING BROKE!” (It as my water breaking) followed by AAAARRRRGGGGGG!!!!!!!!!Catlin said to me in a very calm voice, “okay good, now let’s try and not push through the next one so you save some energy.”
I was like, “Are you freakin’ kidding me??? I caaaaaaaaaannnnnnn’ttttttt stop, THE BABY IS COMING, I FEEL A HEAD!!!!!!After just 15 minutes of active pushing our little ‘BIG’ baby emerged into the water and Cat immediately placed her in my arms! After several minutes of pure bliss we thought, “what do we have?” Cat announced “It’s a GIRL!!!” Tears filled the room.
She’s here! She’s healthy and in one piece, she didn’t get stuck! I’m here and healthy and NO hemorrhage (like in the hospital). We waited for the cord to stop pulsating before clamping and cutting and the placenta came within 6 minutes after birth (all on its own). I began to nurse our baby girl right away and all was absolutely perfect…After a couple of hours of bonding we were anxious to see what this big girl weighed…..and here are her stats:
January 11, 2012
born at 9:47am after under 5 hours of labor and 15 minutes of pushing
11lb. 12 oz.
I DID IT! I birthed this sweet baby girl at home and in water just how I’ve always wanted, knowing it is what was best for both of us. This birth resulted in a super healthy baby and super healthy Mommy (something that has never been the outcome of my hospital birth experiences) I would never do this any other way. I also didn’t have a single tear and I was not a gestational diabetic. I’m still on a ‘high’ and she’s already 2 weeks old!