May 17, 2011 Waterbirth at Birthways
Jason and I found out we were pregnant on August 27, 2010. From that day on we decided that we did not want to find out the sex of our baby. I began my morning sickness at about 9 weeks and it never went away. I actually ended up throwing up my entire labor as well. It was interesting to hear what everyone’s opinion was, mainly that I was carrying all out front so they thought it was a boy. We had our ultrasound on December 14, 2010 and my mom came into town to see the baby on the big screen. Since Jason is a Chiropractor and looks at film all the time, I told the ultrasound tech to make sure and not tell us. He was telling us all about the baby and saying everything was normal but then got very quiet so I assumed he was looking at the genitals and Jason was focusing on the screen because he wanted to know the sex. He said he thought it was a girl because he didn’t see anything sticking out and later on we found out he was right.
My last day of work was April 30,2011 and our due date was May 8. How neat that it was Mother’s Day and my grandfather’s 85 birthday. My mom changed her flight and flew in on April 29 just in case the baby was early. It was my cousin Kyle’s birthday party on April 30 and everyone went over to celebrate. My mom is on chemo at the current time and her immune system is very weak. A plate accidentally fell on the floor and ended up cutting the back of her ankle. We didn’t think much of it but eventually took her to the Dr. on Monday to get antibiotics. It didn’t get much better and on Wednesday we were sitting in Sarasota Memorial ER with masks on waiting to see the doctor. We were there from 2:30PM until about 10 PM. They did an entire work up and thank gosh for Aunt Shelley who brought this extremely pregnant mama some food. At about 9 PM, the Dr. came in and said they had to keep mom because her infection was very bad and almost turned to gangrene. Of course my mom started to cry but I kept myself together. She ended up staying in the hospital until Friday and then she got to come home. The following week, we ran her to many doctor appointments and our stubborn baby had still not arrived. Mother’s Day came and went, and on May 13, my dad said he had a feeling the baby was going to come and drove himself to the airport and flew in from Tennessee. He stayed until May 16. On May 15, Jason was driving to work and a belt on his 2003 Civic ripped to shreds so we had to pick him up and have his car towed. Thank goodness my brother Trevor was in town because we gave Jason his car to take to work. On Saturday night, the air conditioning broke and a good friend came to fix it. My dad left on Monday afternoon, May 16, and I had my doctor appointment this day as well.
My midwife Christina told me that I was 2-3 cm and at -2 station. She tried to strip my membranes but said that she was unable to at this time. She said the baby is very healthy and so was I but that the baby was still slightly posterior which is why she isn’t dropping into the birth canal. We then discussed how if I didn’t have the baby by May 22, I would have to go to the hospital for a non-stress test and would no longer be able to have the baby at the birthing center. I could have a home birth, get induced, or wait until the baby came and have it at the hospital. At this point I started to freak out, I have planned for a birthing center birth with my midwives, have taken all the natural child birth classes and now I am going to have to go to the hospital and get pitocin and a possible c-section. I was 3 weeks late when I was born and if you based Emersyn’s due date off my last menstrual period she would have been 19 days late. Since I ovulate so late in my cycle, the birthing center went off my date, which the ultrasound confirmed as May 8. I called a few friends, freaked out and then called my cousin Casey who was in town for the weekend just in case the baby decided to make an entrance. Since Jason’s car was in the shop, Casey came over and we had to pick up Jason from work. I also took Jason to work that morning and had been up since 8 AM. Prior to doing that, I went home after seeing Christina and was on my hands and knees for 40 minutes and then laid on my left side to try and turn the baby. I did this twice before we went to pick up Jason. When we got to his office, I had him adjust me and he said that my pubic bone was very out. After he adjusted me, I felt a gush and when I got home I tested the fluid and it said it was amniotic fluid. When we got home, Aunt Shelley and Uncle Dennis were here as well as my mom and all 7 of us ate pizza and salad. At about 8 PM, I started to feel contractions that I timed. This was the first time I really had something to time. The Burkes left around 9:30 and Jason and I went upstairs to watch TV and he fell asleep around 11PM. This is when things started to speed up for me, or get rather painful. I sat on the toilet, laid in bed, laid on the floor and nothing was helping. At 1:30 AM I came downstairs where my brother was watching Braveheart and sat on the birthing ball. He kept telling me I needed to wake someone up, and he changed the channel because he said it was too intense for me at that time. I was paying no attention to the TV and he said again to wake someone up, I told him to shut up. I thought I was being quiet but he said I was making some interesting noises.
At about 2AM, I took the birthing ball upstairs and around 2:30 I attempted to wake up Jason. I waited as long as possible because he is horrible with little sleep and was only at about 3 hours at this time and I had had no sleep since the night before. When I finally woke him up, I told him to call Christina and he was freaking out. Where is the number? What do you want me to say? Then he called and ended up giving me the phone in the middle of a contraction. Christina asked if I was comfortable. I said I could handle being home a little longer and she told me to take a shower and call her back. The low back pain was so intense. I had learned in my birthing class that if you have a bad back labor to have your husband push on your low back for counter pressure. He was pushing on my back while my mom, who we finally woke up and was so excited, was rubbing my head. At about 3 I started to throw up but luckily the pizza had already digested. I switched from having the birthing ball on the floor to putting it on the bed and at about 4 we called Christina again and she said to meet her at the birthing center in 30-40 minutes. In my head I knew that the drive was about 20-25 minutes and my contractions were about 5 minutes apart so I got my birthing ball, trash can, and all our supplies as well as mom and Jason and we drove to Sarasota. I had about 5 contractions in the car and was in a lot of pain in my low back when we arrived. Christina checked me and I was 5-6 cm. Kristin arrived shortly after we did and helped out a lot while in labor. They had to hook me up to an IV because I would not stop throwing up. I had an amazing bag of food and drinks that I was allowed to have and all I wanted was ice chips. What is wrong with this situation?
I continued to squat on the birthing ball and lean over the bed but was so weak that my legs began to shake. Jason put a hot compress on my back and that helped. At one point I tried to lie on the bed and jumped up faster than I ever have in my entire life. The pain was so intense I couldn’t handle lying down. I had so many plans of updating my friends and family but the labor was so intense that I didn’t call anyone. At around 5:30 I told Jason I might want to go and get an epidural because of how bad my back hurt and it was at this time that Kristin began to fill the tub with water. It was about half full when she said they were having problems with the hot water. I thought what am I going to do now? My dream was to have a water birth. It eventually started to work again and the tub felt like it took 2 hours to fill up. Finally I was allowed in the tub around 8 (if you get in the tub too early it could slow or stop your labor). Around 6:30 I had Jason text Kelly and Kara who were also going to be at the birth and he told them that I was in labor but not to come yet. Kara freaked out but was excited and called Kelly. Kelly told Kara to calm down that I probably wouldn’t have the baby until around 3 PM. Kelly called in a sub and Kara who was walking out the door told her work that she had to take her pregnant friend to the hospital because no one could take her. Jason also called his mom Peggy who stopped at Publix to get Jason food on her way. For all of you who know Jason, know that he needs food or he turns into a bear. Overall he did awesome for only having 3 hours of sleep and eating about 4 protein bars over the period of time we were there.
When I got into the tub my pain went from wanting an epidural to relaxing and falling asleep in the tub in a matter of minutes. My mom thought they put a relaxer in my IV because it happened so fast. I guess that is why they call it the aquadural. I relaxed for a while but the pain started to get intense again as I turned from lying on my back to a squatting position. The rectal pressure was so intense that I began pushing against it without even knowing. Kristin said I was allowed to push if I felt the need and I told her I already was. She then had me flip over which was very hard to do because of how much pain I was in and she said no wonder, I was completely dilated and my cervix was totally thinned out.
At this point, Jason sent a text to Kara and Kelly that said “ PUSHING COME NOW”.
Kara got there first, she was going about 90 on the interstate, and then Peggy arrived. When Kara arrived, I was in the middle of a contraction and I looked up at her and told her to “Snap Away”. She captured some of the most amazing moments I have ever experienced in my entire life. Christina called Peggy to see where she was at and she was on her way and arrived around 9:00AM. I kept pushing but the entire time in the back of my mind I was wondering where Kelly was. The pushing was intense at times I would start to push take a breath and then make myself push again. Other times I would push and try to relax but my body would make me continue to push about 6 -10 more times. The pushing was a lot of work and I reached down and could feel the top of my baby’s head but she still had the bag of water around her. At some point in the 45 minutes of pushing, my water bag finally broke, which is normal. We thought it would have been neat if it never broke but it did. I could feel that our baby had a lot of hair and felt like I was making progress but when I stopped pushing, she would creep back up. I said out loud “why does this baby keep going back up?” I began to push at 8:45 AM and the baby was born 2 minutes after Kelly walked in the door – she had gotten a speeding ticket. Jason was in the tub pouring water down my back, which felt really good for the back pain. Jason delivered the baby at 9:33 AM and we pulled her out of the water together and discovered the sex. I was so excited that I yelled, “It’s a girl” so loud you couldn’t even hear Jason say it as well. I delivered the placenta out of the tub on the bed because I was bleeding a little more than normal and ended up with 2 stitches.
We named our baby girl Emersyn Mae Fielding, Mae after my grandmother. She was 8 pounds 6 ounces and was 20 inches long . We bonded as a family and had a few visitors come to the birthing center. At 2 we left and went to see Dr. Amy Tafeen, the baby Chiropractor, for Emersyn’s first adjustment. Then we drove home and relaxed. I had the most amazing birth ever, however painful, but you soon forget about all that. I would have a natural birth again and would say it is definitely worth it. I healed so fast and feel like that is because I didn’t have any drugs in my system. We look forward to a beautiful life together and thank our wonderful midwives for such an amazing experience.