10/24/18: I texted Alex at 4:30pm and told her that I had been cramping through the night and off and on through the day. I texted her again at 6:30pm and let her know I had just had some blood tinged mucus. She asked if I was having any regular contractions and I told her they were about 10 minutes apart. She said great and to keep her updated. I also texted April (nurse friend) and let her know that I had lost some mucus plug. She told me to take a bath and maybe some Benadryl. I took a lavender bath along with Tylenol pm about 9pm. Ben and I went to bed about 10:30-11.
10/25/18: I woke up around 1am unable to stay in bed because the contractions were more intense lying down. I got up and went to the bathroom. I then decided to stay on the toilet and got my pillow and sat backwards in the toilet resting my head on my pillow between contractions. I timed the contractions for about an hour and they were 4-5 mins apart. I called April at 2:40 and asked her if she could come down and check me just to make sure I didn’t need to call Alex yet because I wasn’t sure if this was the real deal or not. She got here at 3:20am.
When she checked she said I was a 5.5 80% zero station. She later said she thinks I was more like a 6-6.5. I called Alex and let her know. She said she would head this way and for us to call Silvia (midwife) if we felt like we needed a midwife sooner since it would take her a while to drive here. She said that if I was comfortable with April monitoring she wanted her to get a full set of vitals on me and check FHTs every 30 mins.
I labored for a bit in the kitchen and living room, having to stand and breath through contractions. I then decided I should probably get Ben up so he could start working on getting the tub up. While he blew it up, I picked up some of the bedroom and then stayed in the kitchen. I had to throw up at one point and contractions were about 2-3 minutes apart. I became vocal through contractions at this point. Once Ben had the tub aired up, I moved back into the bedroom. I labored on hands and knees on the bed with my upper body resting on the ball for a few contractions and then would stand up and lean over the bed for a few. Ben was right next to me rubbing my back and offering sips of water while the tub was being filled up with water.
Annalee (photographer) arrived and starting taking photos. April stayed by me and reminded me to use a low tone and Ben would vocalize with me through each contraction. April stayed in touch with Alex during this time and had called Silvia to head over. Once the tub had enough water, I changed into my birth bra and got ready to get in. Silvia arrived and brought in her bags. Around 5:30am Alex arrived just a few minutes later and brought in all her stuff.
I got in the pool and contractions were immediately more manageable. I labored in the pool for a while breathing and vocalizing through contractions. Alex checked heart tones regularly which stayed in the 140s. I changed positions frequently from leaning over the edge of the pool to hands and knees and sometimes sitting back on the seat in the pool. Ben asked if I wanted music and I told him I was enjoying the quiet. April had to remind me pretty often to keep a lower tone which was really helpful and she would remind me to slow my breathing down. Ben vocalized with me through each contraction. At one point he had to go to the bathroom and him being out of the room was so noticed. I almost asked where he was but he came back in the room. He fanned me with a cool wash rag.
I started to feel the urge to push and was letting my body bear down adding little pushes at the end. After what felt like at least 30 minutes I tried sitting up on the seat to push. I tried that for about 30 minutes and Alex asked if I felt her head moving down. I said maybe a little bit, but not really. I asked her to check me to see what was going on because I didn’t want to be pushing if it wasn’t time. She checked and said I was an 8 but the bag was bulging and that was probably why I felt the urge to push. I asked what we could do and she said she could break my water if I wanted. I told her to do it. She broke my water and I instantly felt baby’s head move down. I kept breathing and let my body push her down. Then I started feeling a really intense pressure in my butt and it was so uncomfortable that I had to get on my hands and knees. I reached down and could feel her head. It was only a few more contractions with some little pushes and her head was out. Alex said she had cord around her neck, but it was too tight to move, so I pushed and her shoulders came out and then she was here! Ben was helping catch her and Alex told him to hold on so she could get the cord off her neck before she came out of the water. She had the cord around her neck 3 times tight. Alex unwrapped her cord and helped me get her on my chest. I just couldn’t even believe that we just had my dream home birth! She was born at 8:19am.
Ben came around and kissed us both.
Alex had me check a few times to see if the cord was still pulsing. She asked if I wanted to deliver the placenta in the tub or move to the bed. I told her we could move to the bed. Emery was trying to latch and I thought it would be easier if we were in the bed. After the placenta was delivered Alex checked to see if I tore. No tears!!
My mom came in and saw us. She then went and got Porter out of his bed and brought him in. He was so sweet and confused by baby sister.
We took a big group picture. Then everybody cleared out so we could have some family time. It was so amazing being in our bed after just having a baby. After Alex was unable to attend the birth of our first child due to being ill at the last minute, I desperately wanted her to be there for the second. I am so so glad that she was! Having the presence of such a knowledgeable, calming and reassuring midwife was everything I could have imagined. I am so thankful and happy to say that having Alex present at the birth of our Emery Jane did not disappoint! Home birth for the win!!