What a relaxing experience. It was so lucky that neither baby nor I had any complications, that we had the most amazing midwife/gynaecologist, and that this was my second child. I think if any of those things had been different, the whole experience would have been different, but it wasn’t.
My mom was visiting and had been around for days, we were doing various projects and hanging out. It was pretty relaxed. After a shockingly painful first birth (it wasn’t bad compared to others but the pain sure took me by surprise when I thought I’d rather die than continue and even after a course I had no idea how to manage contractions), I was expecting the worst. I was two days overdue so received a sweep from my midwife during our appointment the day before. The midwife prepared me to be induced the following week, she said I was pretty far off as the baby hadn’t dropped and my cervix was back and closed. Saw my neighbour in the grocery store afterwards and she gave me the ingredients to a labour cocktail (which thankfully I didn’t need) so I bought all that to prepare at home. Then Rob and I went around running tons of errands in Nelson, ate spicy thai for lunch, I drank tons of fluids and finished up paperwork in the evening. So I went to bed relaxed. At 4am my period cramp style cramping contractions woke me up. After 30min I started to time them and they were about 5min apart so I woke Rob up. He made me eggs for breakfast (which I later threw up…) and I called the midwife at 5am. No answer. So I ate and bounced on a ball and called again at 5:45. No answer again.
I was a bit concerned but it was still early days so no panic. Finally at 6:15 the midwife on call phoned and told me she’d sent the two midwives on the day shift to see me. One called and said I was still early so she’d be by at 10am. A little shocked at first, I realized this is what I needed to expect from a home birth.
Meanwhile I took a bath for an hour, walked around the garden in a robe and sat on the love seat swing in our garden (where I threw up after a particularly bad contraction in front of a very confused Klara). At 10:30am the midwife arrived and said I was 5cm dilated. Apparently I had already been 2cm the day before but all other signs had showed that I was far off.
Then the midwife left to an appointment in the nearest town 10 minutes away.
Rob prepared the bed and we thought it might be time for my mom and Klara to head off to my sister’s place for the day. It was impossile to keep things together in front of Klara, even though my mom was occupying her.
I was told not to take another bath as things might progress too quickly. So I sat on a ball in the bathroom and listened to a hypnobirthing youtube video. First time listening to the whole thing and it was quite relaxing to listen as I breathed through contractions.
An hour later my favourite midwife showed up at the house with all her equipment. She set everything up for a while: the baby emergency equipment station in the bedroom, all the supplies, etc. After a while of hanging out she put in my antibiotics at 1pm (needed them as I had that bacteria they test for).
It was just so weird: the whole time though I was still able to breath through contractions and felt relaxed.
At 2pm, I was still traumatized from my first birth and expecting things to get crazy so I asked for my water to be broken. The midwife called the second midwife to tell her to come back from her appointments and we all went to the bedroom, after I thew up again with another bad contraction, and the midwife broke my water.
I lay on the bed for a couple of contractions but it was too painful so I asked to stand up and put my hands on the bed. I even asked if I could deliver this way (since in Switzerland for Klara in the hospital there didn’t seem to be another choice than to lie in the hospital bed to push). So I stood there and moaned while the liquids poured out of me. After 4 contractions I felt the baby already dangling between my legs (yes, without the epidural you feel everything!). I asked Rob to take pictures or describe things but he was in shock and had forgotten the phone downstairs. Not that I’d post those pics here…
Then the baby was out! Rob didn’t even have time to catch him! (the midwife did 😉
See what I mean about relaxed? We just went step by step. The second midwife got stuck behind a hay delivering truck on the road so only arrived as they baby came out. She heard “it’s a boy” as she walked up the stairs to the bedroom.
It took 30min for my placenta to come out but I was ecstatic that it was over so didn’t mind the moving and pushing, etc.
The following part was a bit painful though. After managing the birth I decided to go through the 4 separate stitches I needed without anesthetic. Ow!
I lay on the bed for the next 4 hours with our new little Samuel trying to nurse and cuddling him while the midwife cleaned my legs and they both did paperwork. Rob had to go outside and take care of the animals. Sam was 55cm and the midwife had to measure him twice to be sure, he is quite a big baby.
I really never thought it possible but what a relaxing experience! After all that back and forth a home birth was 100% worth it. Sam also turned out to be the calmest baby I could ever imagine and in great health so I am so very grateful.