I choose a home water birth because birth is a natural part of life, not a disease or medical emergency that needs the intervention of doctors. My body was made to bring life into this world and all I needed to do was trust it and it would be able to do everything safely and efficiently.
And my birth was Beautiful. I don't know if words will ever quite do it justice but I will try...
I lost my mucus plug at 11pm on July 2nd and went into early labor at 2am on July 3rd. "This was it" I thought, "I will be holding you very soon! Now to get through labor and birth...". Admittedly, I was a little nervous about the pain because it was my first birth. MJ (my husband) was my source of strength and support through out the labor and helped me realize I was a strong woman and I could birth this baby.
While in labor I felt so spiritually connected to the Earth. I wanted to hold Earth, Hear Earth. I played with clay during contractions and I listened to Native Flute Music. It was so calming and relaxing and allowed me to be in a Zen trance. I opened my mind to the pain, I needed the pain. The pain was good, it meant I was opening to bring my baby Earthside. Having this mindset meant the pain wasn't pain anymore and I was able to focus all the energy on my body opening.
I planned on not having any dilation checks but I got to antsy during labor and wanted to know that all this pain was doing something. When my midwife asst, April, checked me at 3pm I was 3cm. She left me to labor alone and said when I was ready to have her present to call her and she will come to support me. My husband and I chose for it to just be him, midwife and midwife asst at the birth and by 9pm I called April saying things had gotten intense enough that I wanted another woman there. When she arrived I had her check me again and I was 6cm dilated. Contractions were getting pretty intense and I so badly wanted to labor in my birthing pool, but April kept saying I had to be at least 7cm so that way I didn't risk slowing down labor. So to help me dilate more, MJ and April convinced me to walk down the stairs from our 3rd floor apartment to the pool down the street. What felt like a hundred years and 3 contractions later, we finally got to the pool. I speedily walked into cool, rippling water and it was so inviting to my huge, heavy, contracting belly.
And being able to labor outside in nature was amazing. Between contractions I just stared at the sky and stars. They were so hypnotic. Like I was dangling at the edge of the universe. I heard the conversations around me but I didn't understand them. "OH, soooo this is 'laborland' " I thought. I don't really know how long we stayed at the swimming pool, but when we finally made it back to the apartment I kept asking April "can I have my hot pool yet?!". I had her check me again and I was 8cm! YEAH! Then April finally spoke the words I had been waiting so long to hear, "MJ, its time to fill the pool."
While waiting for my pool to fill I sat on a birthing stool then moved to sitting backwards on the toilet. I just wanted any position that opened my pelvis more to allow baby to descend better and open my cervix faster. About an hour later I was able to step into the pool and I just melted. The hot water was so relieving on my tired body. I was shaking with joy at just how amazing the hot water was. It was like a warm protective blanket being wrapped all around me. I tried sitting or leaning back in the pool during a contraction and that is not comfortable at ALL. I took the position of squatting on my knees in the water with the top of my body hanging over the pool. I was getting anxious after being in labor for over 22 hours so I had April check me again and she said I was still at 8cm. I got frustrated that I was still at 8cm and I just really wanted to have this baby already so I asked if she would pop my water. She told me she would have to contact my midwife (Jennifer) to ok it. When she came back saying that she could pop my water I delightfully sat on the birthing stool and felt this relief of pressure as she popped it. I hopped back into the pool then all of a sudden labor became even more intense with double peaking contractions. Then all of a sudden I got the famous 20-30 minute break between the Transition and Pushing phase and the hot water actually allowed me to fall asleep. When I was finally awaken by contractions, I felt this uncontrollable urge to push. I was amazed at how my body knew EXACTLY what to do and was pushing all on its own. I asked April, "My body wants to push! Can I push?!" April started calling my midwife for her to come over and told me to try to breathe through the contractions. A few minutes later April approached me saying that Jennifer was not going to be able to make it because she was stuck at another mommas birth so another midwife was on the way. I didn't panic at the time. I didn't care who was there I just wanted my baby out. So April checked me one last time and delightfully announced I was fully dilated. "Ok Heather, I want you to try to give me 3 pushes with each contraction". "This is it " I thought, "here you come!". MJ held my hand as I pushed. After what felt like 5 minutes (but really was 30 minutes) of pushing, the head was out and Elisa (sub-midwife) had arrived. April told me "One last push Heather! Your baby is almost here!". And with that last push the baby was out! April pushed the baby underneath my legs and I lifted baby to my chest. "Its a boy!!" I exclaimed looking at MJ who was smiling tears of joy. I looked down at my beautiful baby boy for the first time and our eyes locked and our souls became entwined. "Welcome to the beautiful world Kage. I love you."
Born: 6lbs 14oz at 4:32am