The Mr. and I took an 8-week course of the Bradley Method birth classes, as we planned for a drug-free, natural labor. We were as educated, informed and prepared as we could be and I was anxious to know WHEN this little boy would be making his appearance. I was nervous and scared and just wanted to know what to expect. With the exception of some issues here and there that required extra monitoring, it was a very healthy and smooth pregnancy.
Tuesday, July 10, 2012
It was the day before my due date, a gorgeous July day. I had a chiropractor appointment in the afternoon so I decided to take a half-day of work since it wouldn't make much sense to go back to the office after my appointment. It was my second of three appointments. Afterwards I headed home for some lunch (leftovers from the night before, HEAVY on the basil, a recipe we received to put you into labor) and the Mr. went back to work.
I had been having small, probably Braxton hicks contractions throughout the day and I think deep down I knew something was coming so I decided to take a nap because I knew if it was coming, I needed to rest when I could.
The Mr. got home and I asked him if he'd like to go on a walk, so we took off around our neighborhood. Around 6:30-7pm, we were on our way home and about 1-2 blocks away when I all of a sudden had to pee really bad. I encouraged the Mr. to go ahead and get the house opened up because I REALLY had to go... Then all of a sudden - did I just pee my pants...?!?! What the heck? Between trying to hurry home and not laugh too hard, I told the Mr., I'm not sure what that was all about, but my water may have just broke. As I went to the bathroom, I could tell I wasn't peeing and I'm pretty sure now, my water broke. We stared at each other with excitement, nervousness and oh-sh*t kinda looks, as this was IT. We knew we essentially had 24 hours and either way our baby would be here..!!
We called family to let them know to head our way. Dan's Mom brought us Chick-Fil-A supper. The Mr. took a shower and got ready and we took our time getting out of the house as we hoped to labor at home as much as possible. Then around 9-9:30pm, we headed to the hospital.
Once we arrived, we went into a temporary room to get checked:
- Yes, my water broke
- I was only dilated 2cm
- They wanted to start Pitocin.....
Ever since my water broke, contractions started to become more regular and continued to get stronger and stronger. We got into our room 10-10:30pm probably and turned the lights down and started some relaxing music to help provide a calming atmosphere. Then we started walking.
We walked and walked and walked. We made so many laps around that floor, I knew each hallway and each turn like it was my own home.
Wednesday, July 11, 2012
They left and we walked more. Then we'd come back into the room to lay down and monitor the baby - everything was on track and the contractions were getting stronger and stronger. Dan was so supportive and encouraged me to rest while laying down but as soon as they were done monitoring, had me back up and walking more.
We were soon at the point where I'd have to stop or slow down walking through contractions, and finally I'd be falling into Dan's arms having him hold me through each contraction. I wanted to go back to our room and try something else because I was getting more and more uncomfortable.
I remember leaning over the back of the couch and then having to move down to the floor on a therapy ball and then laying on the floor because the contractions were so intense.
Then as if a switch flipped, I felt like I had to push. I told Dan and we both panicked while trying to let the other not know, as we knew there was no way it was that time yet. Dan told me whatever I did, DO NOT push and that I had to get back in the bed before he got the nurse.. But I couldn't move. I felt as though my body kept convulsing and the pain was rippling from head to toe and I couldn't control the waves and the urge. I finally had a break from it all and Dan helped me get into bed and quick peaked out into the hall to get our nurse.
I could tell from the nurse's reaction, she too was caught off guard, as it didn't seem possible for it to be time to push. It was probably 2:30am, which meant I had only been AT the hospital and laboring a little over four hours. She said she wanted to check me but I asked to please wait til I had a break from the contractions as I was trying to control my body and relax through each. Our nurse was amazing and supportive and was fine with waiting.
I kept looking back and forth between our nurse and Dan wanting to cry as I was saying, 'I can't do this, I can't do this.' In my head I was thinking, 'I can't have a baby, I don't want to have a baby, I just want to go home and not do any of this.' But what kind of terrible mother thinks that, I couldn't say that out loud!! I knew the average labor for a first time mother was well over 12+ hours and I was no where close, if I had to continue for another 10 hours like this, there was no way. I couldn't do it. The nurse continued to encourage me and say, 'you ARE doing this'. Dan was amazing and kept me calm and relaxed.
Finally I had a break and the nurse checked to see how far along I was.. 'Oh, the baby is right there,' she said, 'I need to call the doctor NOW.' She advised us if there was anyone coming to the hospital that we needed to call them NOW. Thank goodness we live literally 2 minutes from the hospital so Dan called my family and his and in a flurry two more nurses came in to help with the baby and everyone very impatiently waited for the doctor to come in. The nurse kept checking on his status. I could tell she was nervous he might not get there soon enough.
My doctor was actually there that night for the delivery and my family made it to the hospital in time, my Mom was in the delivery room with us. After only 5 hours** of active labor and about 20 minutes of pushing, Tyson Joseph arrived on his due date at 3:19am.
He was perfect and healthy and we did it.
It was an overwhelming rush of emotions, although maybe not what I expected and not what I often hear other moms say. I'm not even sure how to explain it all and some of it I don't want to explain. I couldn't believe I could now actually see him and he was here with us. I was thankful and worried and tired and excited and scared.
**(Please note I say 'only' 5 hours.. loosely. I had to get to 10cm just like anyone else; however rather than doing it in 12+ hours, I did it in half the time. That is not to brag or compare my story to your's. Each is precious and special. This is MY story and the timing does not discount what I went through/accomplished. I do NOT think I just got lucky, I think there are many factors that attributed to this, including things we did on our part to encourage efficient laboring.)
A very proud Daddy.
Tyson is such a blessing to us and he is absolutely perfect for our family.
I always want you to know how special you are and how much we CELEBRATE the day you were born.
Happy 2nd Birthday, Tyson!!
I'm happy to discuss further labor/delivery or answer any questions anyone might have re: drug-free births, in particular. Please feel free to comment below or email me directly. :)