I know you’ve all been waiting for me to write about my birth story. It was a roller coaster ride and I really hope I can do it justice without scaring anyone off with TMI. I will warn that I will go into detail and if you don’t want to read about it, then you can click away any time you want! No pressure here. Oh and I may be all over the place as well, but I hope that I can make every detail come together and make sense. It will be a long post!
So on Friday November 7th, I went to work as usual and felt great. We had a very busy day and when I left work that afternoon, I told everyone I would see them the next day. After all, I was planning on working until Tuesday the 11th anyway. Boy how wrong I was!
Peter and I were eating supper around 5pm and that’s when I noticed a little bit of stomach cramps. I thought that supper just wasn’t agreeing with me. I ended up going to the bathroom (poop) about 3 times in 2 hours. I was just having cramps and no back pain at all so I thought it was just stomach issues. The cramps persisted throughout the evening, each time ending with me on the toilet. I looked up on the internet about bowel movements and labour and I couldn’t find any concise answers, so I honestly did not think it was labour. Plus, I had heard SO many times that true labour happens in your lower back. I did not have any pain like that at all. ALSO I KEPT ON POOPING!! WTF.
Around 8:30pm, Peter and I decided to go to bed after a lengthy conversation about baby names. We had a boy’s name picked out for months, but just couldn’t agree on a girl’s name. We still hadn’t decided when we turned out the lights for the night. Peter fell asleep right away, but I was still getting up to go poop every half an hour. I couldn’t believe that much poop could come out of me. Anyway, the cramps were getting a little more intense and the amount of poop was lessening. I started to suspect this could be something more besides stomach issues.
At 1am, the pain was starting to hurt so bad that I found it very uncomfortable to lay down in bed anymore. I also couldn’t keep my moans quiet anymore. I finally woke Peter up and he drew me a bath. At this point I had a little more inclination that it could be early labour. So I started to time the “contractions.” The bath didn’t really seem to help and I just had to get up and pace around the bathroom. I tried calling my Mom to see if she thought it could be labour and if I should actually call my midwives and wake them up. For some reason, I felt totally horrible for waking them up, especially if it was false labour. I had no idea what to expect so I didn’t want to overreact. Mom didn’t answer so I was left with the advice I had been given in our prenatal class: 311. Meaning to only call if the contractions were 3 minutes apart, lasting for at least a minute and it had been happening for an hour.
Since we had only been timing since just after 1:30am, I didn’t want to call yet. A stupid move on my part now that I look back on it. At about 2:15am, I was leaning over the bathroom counter, breathing through a contraction, with Peter by my side when all of a sudden my water broke all over the floor (and Peter’s feet). It was like on tv where it burst with a huge gush. It was definitely time to call the midwife and so Peter handled that part. They needed to talk to me and I could barely speak through the pain. However, they were on their way to our house to assess me before going to the hospital. So I finally accepted that this was it and I was going to have this baby sooner than I thought.
Unfortunately, as soon as my water broke, I felt this overwhelming urge to push with each contraction. I tried not to, but my body was taking over. Peter was holding me at every single contraction and helping me get through them. I kept trying to cross my legs because I really didn’t want to have this baby on the bathroom floor with Peter doing the delivery. We had been advised in our baby class not to close up during labour, but to be open as it makes breathing easier. So every time I went to cross my legs and tighten up, Peter was there to remind me to open up and uncross everything. He really was super supportive.
In between each contraction Peter was scooting around trying to put the finishing touches on our hospital bag. Plus we still needed to get the car seat installed in the car. But he had to keep running over to me for each contraction so the packing wasn’t going very fast. I had planned on finishing packing after I was finished work in a couple days. Of course, that wasn’t going to happen. After a few more contractions and involuntary pushes, I reached down and I swear I could feel the babies head already. Of course I also thought I was overreacting. I kept telling Peter that we weren’t going to make it to the hospital because I felt the head. He probably thought I was delirious or something.
Finally, the midwives arrived at 3am. They got me onto the bed so they could do their assessment (triage) before deciding what to do next. I told them I didn’t want to go onto the bed because it was so uncomfortable to lay down, but I knew I had to let them do their thing. They started their assessment on my belly to feel where the baby was at and got out their heart rate monitor. One of the midwives happened to look down between my legs and blurted out that she could see the head already and we had to do this thing here and now.
They threw down some plastic mats on the bed and set up as fast and efficient as they could. They hadn’t brought all of their home birth equipment (because we had planned on a hospital birth) but they had the necessities. They monitored the baby’s heart rate throughout the entire process to make sure everything was going fine. After only 15 minutes of pushing, out came baby and she was laid directly onto my chest. We finally were able to find out whether we had a son or a daughter. Much to our surprise and delight, she was a girl. I had been 85% sure we were having a boy, but had always wanted to have a girl first. Peter also wanted a girl first, so both our wishes were answered. Peter was then able to cut the cord. I couldn’t watch that part, however.
The midwives gave our baby girl a shot of vitamin K and me a shot of oxytocin to help contract my uterus and to deliver the placenta. Quickly after I delivered the placenta, the midwives pushed on my uterus to make sure blood clots and everything from the placenta was out. Now, I know I may sound crazy, but I swear that the midwives pushing was worse than the actual birth itself. I can honestly say, I do not believe giving birth was the worst pain I have ever felt. Some of you may not believe me, but I’m just sharing my experience. They cleaned me up a bit and had a closer look to see if I had any tearing. I had a minor 1st degree tear that did not require stitches. Score!
The bedsheets were changed and Peter was given a bit of skin to skin time with baby while I went to the bathroom and cleaned up a little more. The midwives helped me get baby latched on for our first breastfeeding session and then they left us alone while they went to do some paperwork. Peter and I wrote out all of our name possibilities on a list and started narrowing them down. We finally arrived on Ezri Jessica. Ezri is a name we both love from Star Trek and Jessica was the name of Peter’s sister who was born before him, but sadly passed away as a stillborn.
After a brief stay in the NICU, Ezri is now at home with us and is a happy healthy baby. Life with a newborn has changed our lives in so many ways. We are so overjoyed that this bundle of love has brought us so much happiness. Peter and I are looking forward to every new adventure that is coming our way.
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