"Ask me for strength and I will lend not only my hand, but also my heart."
~ Unknown

Friday, March 8, 2013

Home Sweet Home: The Birth of William

Rachel expecting William

This is Rachel's story of the birth of her second son, William.  Enjoy!

Wednesday Nov. 27 was just like any other day. Henry and I hung out all day while John was at work. When John got home we ate dinner and after dinner the 3 of us went to church. I felt completely normal. We even stayed afterwards for fellowship, which we don’t normally do on Wednesdays since church starts at Henry’s bedtime.  When we got home, we put Henry to bed (in our bed) and we got ready for bed too. That’s when I noticed that I had lost my Mucus Plug…maybe. I wasn’t 100% sure. It wasn’t like it was last time. But even if I had lost it, it could be weeks until baby William was born. So I casually told John and we went to bed. JUST as I was falling asleep, my water broke.

I was lying in bed perfectly still, half asleep and my water broke. It was 11:30pm.

I woke John up and told him. We were both so shocked. Yes, I was 39 weeks pregnant but still feeling so good. We both thought we had at least 1-2 weeks until William would be born. Honestly, we were stunned. I didn’t know what I should do. With Henry's delivery my water broke at the very end, right before I started pushing. What do you do if it happens first? I was so nervous! I started shaking. I didn’t know if I should call the midwife or not. They told us that if it is night time, not to call unless you are sure things are happening. That way they can sleep until you need them. My water broke but I wasn’t having any contractions yet….so I didn’t know if I should wait to call. It was only 11:30pm so John convinced me to call just because we were both so stunned. I called and Viv answered. She asked if I was having contractions, and what color the fluid was (clear). She told me since I was Group B Strep negative and the water was clear, that there wasn’t any rush to have the baby. We had 48 hours until we had to start talking about what to do. She said normally contractions start within 6 hours of your water breaking. She told us to go back to sleep and call her when my contractions were less than 10 minutes apart. She also told me NOT to get in the bathtub until she got to our house. Apparently it makes you more relaxed and you dilate very quickly.

John moved Henry to his own bed so we could change the sheets on our bed since they were soaked from my water breaking. Of course he woke up and wanted his mommy. So I went to lay with him until he fell back asleep. I also texted and called my friend Vanessa, since she was going to come watch Henry. Since we weren’t sure when things were going to happen, she decided to stay home with her 8 month old and wait for further word. She only lives about 15 minutes from our house anyways. Every time I went to leave Henry’s room, he woke up crying. So we brought him back to our bed and the 3 of us laid down to sleep. I thought that we would sleep all night and get up in the morning with plenty of time to give the house a good clean before my contractions started. Kind of perfect right? 


As soon as I lay down I had my first contraction. It was about 12:30 at that point. I started timing them right away and they were 6 minutes apart, lasting 30-45 seconds. For about half an hour I just laid in bed timing them and trying to sleep in between. By 1am they were 4 minutes apart and crazy painful. I wanted to get in the tub so badly (but couldn't because Viv the midwife told me to wait for her). I couldn’t think about anything else. So I begged John to call Viv (and then we cleaned the bathroom really quickly, which sucks to do while in labour).

I labored on the bathroom floor, on my hands and knees, leaning my head on the (freshly cleaned) toilet. Viv said she would be right over, and within 20 minutes she was there (just before 1:30am). John had already filled the tub and as soon as she came into the bathroom, I basically jumped in the tub. We talked about how I was feeling and she set her things up. John moved Henry back to his room and he didn’t wake up. John decided not to make Vanessa come over unless Henry woke up. He amazingly didn’t. This was the first night he EVER slept in his own bed all night long.

From there I lost track of time. My contractions spaced out more but were more intense. I started feeling pressure but not with every contraction. These contractions? WAY MORE PAINFUL than the ones I had with Henry (my first born). They were in my bones. It was my hips and pelvic bone that hurt the most, with pain running down my legs, something I didn't have while in labour with Henry. I blame it on my water being broken. The second midwife arrived sometime in there but honestly I don’t really remember her being around until after the birth. I think she sat in the bedroom, filling out paper work, waiting to be needed. I had a period of time where I couldn’t stop shaking both during and between my contractions. Viv thought I was in transition so she asked to check me. IT was 3:30am and it turns out I was only 6cm dialted. She didn’t tell me and I’m glad she didn’t. I would have cried from disappointment. She asked me if I wanted to get out of the tub for a bit, to let gravity work. Just as she was telling me that (and I found out later, she was irritating my cervix) I had a huge contraction and my body pushed so hard, all on it’s own. After that I was completely dilated and so so happy I didn’t have to get out of the tub. Viv just told me to do what my body wanted to do. And it wanted to push really hard. I pushed for 18 minutes and William was out. Just as he was crowning, our dog started barking so John ran to quiet him, hoping that Henry would stay sleeping. He did, but John missed William actually being born. He was 100% OK with that since he doesn’t like to see what is happening down there. After the head was out Viv told me to just breathe but before she could even finish saying that, his body flew out. It all happened so fast!

William was born at 3:48am and they put him right on my chest. Everything had happened so fast and I was so shocked. Did I really just have a baby? I couldn’t believe he was here! After my placenta was out (all on it's own...no tugging!), the cord stopped pulsing and was cut. John then took William for some skin-to-skin time in our bed. I had a quick shower and went to join them. Viv gave me a check and told me I didn’t need any stitches and I wasn’t even swollen. They covered me with blankets fresh out of the dryer and I took William back for a cuddle. Viv and the second midwife (I don’t even know her name!) went down stairs to fill out paperwork leaving us alone with our new baby. John and I just stayed in our bed cuddling with William. Around 5am Henry woke up so we introduced him to William. He just kept wanting to look at him but he didn’t want to touch him at all. The midwives came back up and did all the baby checks. William weighed 7 pounds, 5 ounces and was 20.5 inches long. He got great scores on all the tests they did. John went downstairs and made us all a snack. After we were done eating, William finally tried to nurse (we tried before but he wouldn’t open his mouth) and his latch was great. I had another shower (the first one was just a quick rinse) and put on some PJs. At 6am the midwives left, and by 6:15am all 4 of us were napping together in our bed. It was lovely!

Home Birth? AMAZING.

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