Master E’s birth story! (Warning! Fairly detailed birth story ahead!)
I woke up to a painful contraction just before 6am on Wednesday, March 12th. I wasn’t sure if it was the real deal or not, but it hurt enough that I had to get out of bed, get onto my knees, and lean over the bed swaying. I got back into bed but another one came a few minutes later. I was feeling a lot of pressure down low, so I kept trying to go to the toilet, thinking maybe that was causing the pain. The second or third contraction, I saw some blood and was starting to think it was the real deal. At that point I went and got into bed with my husband and told him that I thought it might be starting, but there was no need to get up yet. A minute or so later I was out of bed swaying through a contraction again and he got up and excitedly got dressed.
At this point the contractions were about five minutes apart, so I text the midwife that things were happening and she said to keep in touch over the next hour. JJ woke up around this time and my husband got him ready with breakfast while I was working through the painful front and back contractions. I poured a bowl of muesli, knowing I would need as much energy as I could get, but I only managed a couple of bites between contractions before they were too close together. At this point, my husband was already filling up the pool and I went into the lounge trying to survive the pain. (wondering why on earth I had been excited for labour!!)
Around 7, I think, I told my husband to text the midwife and tell her to come, because they were much closer now, less than three min apart, I’m sure, and progressing quickly. We also called our pastor’s wife and she made her way over to help with JJ while I laboured. As soon as the pool was filled, I got in, and the relief was immediate! The contractions still hurt super badly, but they were lessened by the heat. I couldn’t wait for our pastor’s wife to get there to watch JJ, because I was eager to have my husband in the pool to apply pressure and heat to my back during contractions. At one point, while hubby was doing one of many small jobs he needed to get done, JJ had a leg over trying to get into the pool fully clothed. Haha. He was a good distraction at the beginning, but at this point I was needing to concentrate fully on the breathing!
My midwife arrived at 7:50am and saw that things were progressing well based on my contractions, breathing, etc. You know, I realised afterwards that I never had an internal examination from her the entire pregnancy. Ah, I love midwives! (I had internals the two times I went into hospital with suspected early labour, but thankfully both times it was a false alarm) Anyway, the second and third midwives arrived in the next ten minutes or so, and one of them would check baby’s heartbeat between contractions. They had a probe that could go into the water, so I never needed to move from wherever I was most comfortable.
I tried several positions in the pool, but with the intense back pain, the only way I was handling the contractions was by leaning over the side of the pool, breathing deeply and exhaling into the towel that was there. (I was exhaling into the side of the pool, but you can imagine what kinda sounds that made, haha. I didn’t do that for long! Lol) As soon as our pastor’s wife got there, she and JJ went to his room to play “airport” and there they stayed until seconds after E was born. My husband was a HUGE help in the pool, pressing the super hot hot water bottle against my back, first with his hands, and eventually holding it there with his foot while leaning back against the pool. (I found that out later!) The back pain didn’t stop between contractions, so he must have had a good workout holding the pressure there for about an hour! I must have looked out of it between contractions because my arms hung limply over the sides as I rested completely between contractions. Every second or third contraction, my midwife would help me drink from my water bottle or I’d grab it myself, but I was feeling pretty weak about now. She was sitting beside the pool by my head and she would hold my hand through the contractions which was a huge help. My waters finally broke about 8:45am and it was so exciting! I knew then that it wouldn’t be much longer. Apparently I was good about telling the midwives what was happening, and because there were three of them, one was taking notes minute by minute so I have a very detailed record of it all!
Around 8:53, I told them I could feel baby moving down and once baby was in the birth canal, I just pushed until he was out! I wish now I would have done it a bit more slowly as I ended up with a tear, but at the time I was so tired and knew that pushing would get it over with! My midwife could see the head with a little mirror underneath me at 9:05 and I had him at 9:08. She had been supporting my perineum to try to reduce tearing, and she helped me with the pushing/panting right at the end, so when he came out, she caught him and handed him up through my legs into my arms as I let out a cry of relief and joy! I turned around immediately and sat next to my darling husband in the pool and they put a towel over our little boy as he laid on my chest in the warm water. E let out a 30 second (or less!) cry, then he promptly fell asleep on me, so amazing! The notes say that I said
“Mama and Daddy love you so much. Welcome to the world!”
It was such a special time and JJ came in seconds later. He knew exactly what had happened and said “baby, in the pool!” I was so glad to have shown him the waterbirth videos on youtube to get him used to labour and birth! I think next time I’d like to have the boys in the room when I am pushing so they can see the actually birth (you can’t see anything much in the pool anyway, but the baby coming out of the water has to be pretty cool!) We called our parents and siblings from the pool to tell them the news. Mom and dad were driving and about half-way here and Mum and Dad G were getting ready to fly up! They were all shocked that he came so quickly!
We laid there with him for around 40min, the pool getting topped up with hot water now and then. I was keen to cut the cord after birthing the placenta, but in the end we cut it so I could stand up and try to get it out with gravity’s help. No problems there, yay! I then moved to sit on the couch and they handed E to me for his first feed and he was a pro! It was all pretty relaxing from there. Mom and dad arrived at noon and Mum and Dad G got in around 1ish, I think. We had wonderful family time and I wouldn’t change it for the world! E was weighed at 8lb 3oz and he was/is perfect! He is a wonderful feeder and sleeper and we so delighted to have him in our family. JJ absolutely adores him and if I don’t get to baby fast enough when he’s crying, JJ is telling me “Hurry, mama! E crying!” (sometimes this is yelled from his room if he’s supposed to be napping or something!)
We’ve had a family of four for just over three months now, and it’s going pretty well. 🙂 Please keep the prayers coming as we strive to raise Godly children! Thank you for all who were praying for us through the pregnancy and labour- God kept this baby in until 39 weeks which was astounding to us both! 🙂