Pumpkin’s Birth Story: Part 2

Read part one here.

Nothing we tried persuaded that baby to make her appearance. We tried every “natural” labor-inducing technique in the books! The doctors even “stripped the membranes” three times. I was feeling a lot of stress and pressure because I would only be allowed to use the natural birth center if I was less than 42 weeks. After that, you get booted into the regular maternity ward where you have to be hooked up to an IV, can’t eat, have no labor/birth tub and it’s loud in there! Where are you, baby girl?!

It was Friday night and I was 1 1/2 weeks past the due date. We went to bed at 10:30 with no sign of labor. At 11PM, I woke up with a killer lower back ache. I rubbed my back and repositioned my body pillow. Much better! My back felt fine and I drifted back to sleep. At 11:30 my backache woke me up again. Oooooohhhh. Back labor! I woke my hubby, told him that I was in labor but to go back to sleep, since it was just early labor.We both went back to sleep. For the rest of the night, I woke to rub my back for 15 seconds, until the contraction was done. It surprised me that my back could hurt that badly in such an early stage of labor. It also surprised me that my contractions were so regular. I could have set a clock by them! They started thirty minutes apart a very gradually got closer together. By the time my hubby went to work Saturday morning, they were down to about 18 minutes apart and had gradually gotten stronger and longer.

I spent the day alone (which helped me stay relaxed and calm) and worked on putting the last few things in the hospital bag and putting finishing touches on the baby’s room. By mid-afternoon my contractions were 10 minutes apart and I decided to rest on the sofa and watch the BBC/A&E Pride and Prejudice. ๐Ÿ™‚ By early evening I called my hubby and let him know that we’d need to head to the hospital when he got home. I called to let the birth center nurse know that I was having contractions less than 10 minutes apart, but she said I didn’t “sound” like I was in labor, so don’t come in until they were 5 minutes. Fine by me! I already knew I wanted to labor at home for as long as possible. When my hubby got home I was about 6 1/2 minutes apart (I’m telling you- we really could have set our watches by these contractions!!), so he got the hospital bag in the car and I called the doula (have a doula, if you possibly can!). At 8PM I was finally down to 5 minutes apart, so we called the hospital, my parents and the doula and made the 20 minute drive. Back labor in the front seat of a Corolla is not my idea of comfort!

Once we got to the hospital, we signed in and headed to the birth center. The nurse gave me a quick once over and said I was too calm to be in labor. I told her about my contractions and she witnessed a few while I just relaxed and breathed through them. I told her that I was pretty certain that my water had broken, but she was skeptical. She used the paper to test and was shocked to see that my water had broken. She told me I was only at 4 centimeters, which was surprising after 20 hours of back labor, but I stayed calm and positive. She said, “You’re the most calm woman in labor I’ve ever seen, but just wait…” I ignored her and my hubby, parents, doula and I continued to chat and joke. ๐Ÿ™‚

The nurse decided I should “walk that baby out“, so my hubby and I walked the long hallway, stopping during contractions so I could lean on him. You can see in the corner of the photo that it’s 10:30PM.

Walking exhausted me, and now that I know better I would have said no. I used up precious energy that I needed for birth. Labor got more intense and I needed my hubby to put all his weight on my lower back for counter-pressure. It was the only thing that eased the intense pain of back labor. I got in the labor/birth tub, which made things much more bearable, but still very intense. The doctor on call was the younger one, which was very discouraging.

And then it really got bad. The birth center nurse had been joined by a “nurse-in-training” from the regular maternity ward. She was loud, inconsiderate and completely unhelpful. Only later did I learn that I didn’t have to consent to have her there. I would have been much more relaxed without her, especially towards the end. The doctor had arrived, but he sat quietly and waited patiently. I decided I liked him a lot better than I liked that nurse-in-training. ๐Ÿ˜‰

After hours of pushing, I was exhausted. The nurses had told me I had to pull on a rope while they held my legs. That was supposed to “engage the correct muscles”. It did nothing but leave me even more exhausted. During this entire time, the doctor was calm, encouraging and patient. I was surprised to realize that I was glad he was there. Although I hadn’t decided for certain on wanting a water-birth (I just knew I wanted the option), nothing on earth was going to get me out of that tub!

I came to the point where I realized that I had precious little energy left, thanks to the nurses, and I had to get my baby out before I was too tired. My hubby says I gave a huge blood-curdling scream (after a pretty quiet labor) and our baby was born! The doctor pushed her through the water towards me and I scooped her up.

She was absolutely perfect! It’s amazing how a person can go from desperately exhausted to ecstatic in an instant. In spite of my long, intense labor, she was perfectly healthy. The doctor and nurses said that they weren’t surprised it took so long after they weighed her: 9 pounds, 9 ounces!

We were so thankful that we were able to be in a natural birth center, where I wasn’t pressured to have interventions. Our doctor ended up being absolutely wonderful and I honestly don’t know how I would have gotten through over 30 hours of back labor without that tub! ๐Ÿ˜‰ Although there are certainly things I would have changed, if I could do it over again, it was a beautiful birth and we were blessed with an absolutely precious little girl!

Read more here!

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16 thoughts on “Pumpkin’s Birth Story: Part 2

  1. I love this story. Like Stacy, I’m glad you have a birth center near you. We do not even have one in our state! I’m nervous about trying to have a natural birth in the hospital. I’ve had epidurals with both kids, but am really considering NOT getting in with this baby. Oh, and I don’t want to be induced again, either!

    • Thanks, Joanie! Yes, we were very blessed and if we hadn’t found a fabulous midwife for homebirth we would have had our second baby there, too. I have a post on how to have a homebirth feel in a hospital setting, if you need some ideas to make it more comfortable. And I (obviously) am all about having natural births, so I completely encourage that idea! ๐Ÿ˜‰ Thanks for the comment!

  2. Love it! Uhhhh–I know the pain of back labor! Do you know if she was posterior (sunny-side up) by any chance? All of my babies have been…this past time was the only baby that has turned after my midwife had me push on hands and knees.

    I loved the birth ball and water as well!

    • Neither of them were sunny-side up, so apparently I’m just a back-labor kind of girl. ๐Ÿ˜› I had absolutely no pain from the abdominal contraction as long as I was relaxing, so I actually do believe those women who say that labor doesn’t hurt for them. *Back labor* is a completely different story! ๐Ÿ˜‰ Poor Kevin was putting all his weight on my back and I kept say, “PUSH HARDER!” Who knows, maybe the next baby will come at a different angle and leave my tailbone alone!

    • Thanks, Blair! Congrats to you, too! I absolutely loved our waterbirth- I hope you enjoy the birth tub, too. I’ll be watching on your blog to read about your experience. And thanks for hosting the link-up!

  3. I’m so glad that it went so beautifully! What a terrific birth.

    I would like to smack a couple of your nurses though. That intake one, in particular. So very wrong of her to speak so negatively to you. Doesn’t sound like she should be an OB nurse.

    I am glad you were able to have such a sweet birth experience!

  4. Wow! What an adventure! So glad to find your site ๐Ÿ™‚ we had an awesome birth couple months ago! Was so fast we couldnt take pictures or video! Congrats and many blessings!

  5. I think I like you more each post I read! ๐Ÿ˜€
    I had all 4 of our children at our local Midwife Center here in Pittsburgh PA, and I wouldn’t have changed a thing!
    Love natural childbirth!
    Love staying home and acting calm and normal (and joking and talking and laughing) for as long as possible!
    Love being able to be mobile in labor, have no IVs, and eat, drink, use the jacuzzi tub, etc at our center.
    Love having candles lit, and a calm, quiet, non-hospital atmosphere.
    Love being home in my own bed 6 hrs after having my babies and feeling tired but WONDERFUL.
    My fourth babe was the best labor yet–I was totally completely relaxed and I know that is why it went so well.
    My motto in labor (to myself) is “I can do this. MILLIONS of women have done this before me, without drugs, and it is a NATURAL part of life”

    I enjoyed your story. thanks for shaing!
    ~Joanna

    • Thanks so much for your sweet comment, Joanna! I’m so glad to be able to share my story with other mamas and I love hearing about their experiences. It makes me so happy to hear about wonderful birth stories like yours! ๐Ÿ™‚

  6. Loved reading your birth stories. I have had 3 babies at the hospital and had great nurses! However, it seems with each birth the experience goes continually downhill concerning medications and epidurals… Seriously considering home birth should we have a 4th. (we want to!) I am curious to know what you found out about ultrasounds.. haven’t been able to find it in your posts.. maybe I’m missing something?

    • Thanks, Sara! We hope that any future babies will be able to be born at home, barring any complications. ๐Ÿ™‚

      No, you didn’t miss it, I just got swept away by so many other things that I haven’t been able to finish my research and post about ultrasounds. What I’ve learned so far is that ultrasounds have *not* been proven safe. What happens with prenatal care is that it is illegal to do medical studies on pregnant women. That means that doctors use equipment and drugs until they are *proven* to be dangerous by the injuries and deaths they cause to the mamas and babies. Ultrasounds are very powerful and studies haven’t been done on what those ultrasonic waves do to the developing brains and cells of the babies. I’d recommend you read my friend Kate’s post about what she learned when she looked into ultrasounds. I do still plan on writing a post, but I want to be sure to do very thorough research, first, which I haven’t been able to do yet. ๐Ÿ™‚

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