by Jamie Fields
I was feeling contractions all the way around my waist-not really back labor, but the cramping extended around the sides of my waist. And I could feel small parts at the front of my baby belly, so I was fairly sure that the baby was posterior. I kept trying to get into hands and knees for him to turn, but it didn’t seem to help and I couldn’t tolerate the position for long. I got in and out of the tub several times, heating the water as hot as I could each time. I just felt so much better in the water.
When the midwife arrived at around 6, I was 4-5cm, farther than I expected. I still felt like I wasn’t really close to birth, and I was worried that my mental state wasn’t right for so early in labor. Between contractions I joked and talked, but I had to breathe through them. Mom, my husband and the midwife took turns sitting in the bathroom with me. When I started “sounding” with contractions, I heard the midwife tell dh “She’s getting close”. Contractions were still pretty spaced out, so I thought she was wrong and again worried about my mental state and my ability to make it through labor. Dh started telling me I’d better get out of the tub b/c he didn’t want a water birth. I reluctantly did. When I vomited, I finally started to believe that I might be in transition. I sat through a couple of contractions on the toilet, and began to feel some pressure.
I moved to the bedroom and sat on the side of the bed. With each contraction I sounded louder and louder. As I felt more pressure, the sound went from a low pitched “ohhhhhh” to almost a growl partway through the contraction. Dh sat behind me with his shoulder against my back and leaned into me with each contraction. I noticed at one point that I was pushing and instead of “ohhhing” was now just bellowing through each contraction. I heard my 5yo ask why I was making so much noise, and my mother explained that the baby was almost ready to be born. Even while pushing the contractions were never closer than about 3 minutes. Between them, I couldn’t talk anymore but I could hear my family talking-the kids were so excited and my mom was planning where they could stand to watch the birth. I bellowed through about 5 contractions. My water finally broke, with a little meconium in it. The midwife got out a Delee. On the next contraction I roared out Isaiah’s head, and then his body. The kids were watching from the doorway. My first response was just relief that it was over. Isaiah was born straight OP, which explained why pushing took so long. He was born at 8:35am, 6.5 hours after I woke up, weighing 7lb 12oz. I spent most of that time thinking I still had a long way to go and wondering why my emotional signposts weren’t making sense with the labor I was having, lol.
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