I asked Daniel to get the bathtub ready for me and to call one of our midwives, Amy, and give her a head’s up that we thought I was possibly in the early stages of labor and should be prepared for us to maybe call her in the middle of the night. Next thing I knew, I was in the bathtub (with a shower head and faucets that didn’t work so well) in warm water. I reclined in the bath and tried to relax through the next contraction. Bad idea. Laying down made it so much worse! So I sat up and tried to work through a couple.
Meanwhile, Amy called Daniel back and said she felt like she should probably come over soon. He asked me if it’s okay, and I told him I’d really prefer for her to wait since I’d be embarrassed if she just had to wait on the couch for hours. (Ha!) Finally, she insisted on coming and says said she’d be there shortly. (I thought I’d add, Amy and the birth center are about 45 minutes away; however, Amy had decided to spend the night at her parents house, which was only about 15 minutes away.)
By this point, it was a little after 11p.m. All of the sudden I had a strong urge to push. It didn’t really hurt, so I was confused as to where I was in labor. Nonetheless, I let my body go with the urge…and out comes everything in my intestines. Indeed. Yet another sign my body was gearing up for labor, and doing so very, very quickly.
So, I left my sweet husband to clean up and said, “I’ve got to go take a shower.” (Yay for having 2 bathrooms, though only 1 with a working bath and the other with a working shower.) So off to the shower, hoping for some relief from the water. Thankfully, there were still a few minutes between contractions, giving me time to think, pray, and concentrate.
However, the contractions that followed the bowel emptying were killers! The next contraction in the shower, I cried out praying, “God, please be merciful!” “God, give strength!” I tried to relax through them, but could not. Instead, I found myself stomping my feet and swaying back and forth through the pain. After 2 horrid contractions in the shower, I got out and tried to rest on the bed. (Another note: Hana Kate’s was sleeping away, typically a light sleeper, in the bedroom right next to both bathrooms.)
Not wanting to endure a labor from a malpositioned baby again, I was determined to try to “spin” the baby by doing the rotation. So onto my left side I went and got ready for the next contraction. When it came, I found myself burying my head into the pillow and gripping it with all my might, yelling into it. I was getting discouraged that all I’d learned in the Bradley class was in vain, though I was trying so hard to use the relaxation techniques. After the first contraction on the bed, Amy came rushing in. I believe the time was 11:58p.m.
She quickly put on her gloves to check my dilation. I told her that a contraction was coming, and again buried head, yelled and gripped. I told her I was trying so hard to relax, but couldn’t. Then I began to feel super shaky and felt the urge to vomit. In my mind I kept saying that there was no way I could keep going like this for hours. With these 3 factors, I wondered if I was perhaps in transition. However, I had felt the vomitty urge and shakiness with Hana Kate about 20 hours before she was born, and was having strong contractions with her at that time, too. So I ruled out that thought.
Amy checked me and said I was 6cm, perhaps stretchable to 8cm. Wow! I was excited. I had another killer contraction (still laboring on my hands and knees), and then felt a gush of fluid with its end. My water had broken, and we hadn’t even had time to put the sheet guard on! Amy ran out to get some more supplies and a plastic tarp for me to labor on since the bed was now soaked. To this day, I have no idea how she did things so quickly. While she was gone, I told Daniel, “I’m afraid that if God answers today’s prayer, we still have a long way to go…”
Part 3 (the final) coming… thankfully I wrote it all soon after Eden was born…just gotta get the pics that go with it….