V called me at 4:30AM to tell me she was having PW every 5 -10 minutes, since about 2:30. She had showered and was moving around to make sure they stayed consistent. Did I think she should head in to the hospital? We talked a little bit more, she was worried she would get sent home, I suggest she listen to a CD and if her PW were still coming, she would probably want to go in.
My DH was in London, so I called a doula friend to come and watch my boys. I got ready to go, as I felt like this was it. Indeed her DH called back about 40 min later and said they were on their way to the hospital. I arrived not long after they did, about 6AM.
She had gotten to skip triage, had a nurse that is a fellow Hypnobabies Instructor and was sitting on her birth ball, getting monitored and answering all the crazy questions they have to ask. The funniest one was when the nurse asked, “Have you had any fertility problems?”
V was 6cm dilated and having PW about every 5-7 minutes. They had all the delivery equipment set up in the room, it seemed like birth was imminent. V was cheerful, despite the fact that the baby was posterior and she was having back labor. She was able to relax completely during each PW and was doing great!
Things started to slow down, so we were doing lunges, belly lifts, walking around the room. (The nurse didn’t want her in the hall in case her water broke and the baby was born in the hall.) By the time Dr. K came in to say hi, her PW had spaced out to more like every 7-10 minutes. V was worried, but Dr. K said, “Whatever you want to do. We have all the time in the world. I am leaving at 6 PM, but there are other OBs who can help you out if you go longer.”
So we just kept pacing the room, belly lifting and resting. V took a break and listened to her fear release CD. Steve and I took a little nap in our chairs while she listened. Pressure waves were spaced out to about 10-15 minutes apart.
We got a new nurse, who was fine with us walking the halls, so walk we did. This made no changes to the PW. We got lunch for everyone and V ate some soup, a cheese stick and yogurt. She was staying hydrated with water and recharge.
We talked through all her options. She wanted to present one to Dr. K, so we talked about going home (Not really a choice she wanted to make, she had bypassed her 2 biggest fears (transition in car and triage) and was settled in a room, the baby was ready, her other 6 kids were all in good hands. She could ask to have her water broken or ask for some pitocin. I was concerned about breaking the water because baby was posterior, I called Carole, my fellow doula who has assisted at over 450 births in the past 20 years. We talked about V’s previous births and as all were posterior and then easily turn at the very end as they are pushed out, she said that breaking her water would probably be her best bet. V and I talked some more.
V, DH and I prayed. She thought breaking water would be best. Dr. K came in about 12:30, checked V who was still at 6cm and 80% . She agreed that breaking the water would be a nice next step, but she was heading off of hospital grounds to do a procedure in a different office. She would be back around 1:30 and could do it then.
V wanted to put in the movie she brought, The Princess Bride, because she was bored and wanted the distraction. By 1 she was having a few PW and wanted the movie off. We put in the Deepening CD and again we all rested. We knew once things got started it would move quickly.
1:40 Dr. K broke V’s water. At this point she was 6cm 90% effaced and baby -1 station. Dr. K held the baby’s head and helped her descend a little slower into the pelvis as the water gushed out.
V got settled onto the birth ball. Her normal nurse wasn’t there. A different one came in and tried to get the baby monitored. It showed up fine as long as she held it, otherwise it picked up V’s heartbeat. She left for a little bit.
By 2, V was having PW probably every 5 minutes and I was talking her through each one and Steve was pressing on her back. Her normal nurse came in and said she needed a better reading on the baby… that would have required V to move and that just wasn’t happening. The nurse could sense that and said, “Or we could just take the monitor off.” WOW, I was in awe. OK, we jumped on that offer. The nurse took the monitor off and left us alone. She did bring us a hot water bottle, which was so helpful for the back labor.
By 2:15 fluid was gushing out with each PW and it was dripping all over the floor, V was also getting flushed and said, “I think this is transition.” I agreed with her.
She made a one last potty break at 2:30, I tried to dry up the floor. We got her settled back on the ball.
Around 3 V said, “I don’t want to do this anymore.” I said, “That means the baby will be here soon.”
The nurse offered to check her and at 3:11 we got her onto the bed to be checked. The nurse said, “7 cm” V groaned,”NOOO”. I said, “It is ok, you can go from 7 to 10 in 2 minutes.” V said, “YES, in 2 mintues!” She then chanted 2 minutes a few times. I talked her through a PW or 2 with her lying on her left side. At one point I couldn’t talk, I just started crying, from happiness, I could tell the baby would be here soon!
Then V flipped to her Right side. The nurse had explained it was more like a 7 on just the right side, so switching positions might help open that last little bit. It worked!
V said, “She is coming!” I asked if she felt like pushing, she wasn’t sure. After the next pressure wave she tried to tell me she felt something in her teeth. I was so confused, then she said, “I felt it with each baby right before they were born!” I said to the nurse, “Call the Dr.”
The nurse insisted on checking her first. Which was pointless, but indeed she was complete. It was maybe 3:17 at this point. V started pushing in her own mother directed way. More like breathing and Ahhing the baby out. Nice LOW noises. The nurse called for the charge nurse and the baby was almost crowning pretty quickly. The nurse called for the nursery nurse.
At this point I moved to her foot. She was still lying on her side. Steve was holding her leg up, she needed more support for her foot to push against. Dr. K got there, just as baby was crowning. I told V she could push between PW if she wanted too… she did just that and slowly pushed the baby’s head out. Then a minute later pushed the body out. Her sweet baby girl was born at 3:24.
V got to hold her and just love on her for awhile. M was 9 pounds and is so cute! She latched right on and knew exactly how to nurse.
It was a fun birth to be at. V did wonderfully. It was an honor for me to be there!