Several people had mentioned to me that labor with their second child was faster than it was with their first, but I didn’t realize it would be as fast as it was! Carter’s labor and delivery was short and painless, except for when I realized that my tailbone had been fractured during delivery. OUCH! All in all it was still a good experience for me, so I was very excited to prepare for my second natural labor and delivery with the same hypnobirthing methods (for anyone in Utah County I took Launi Anderson’s class and it was amazing!). I wasn’t able to participate in another class like I did when pregnant with Carter, but I had all the materials (book, CDs, scripts, etc) so I was able to do ample preparation on my own. This time around, I feel like the thing that helped me the absolute most during late pregnancy and also during labor was positive affirmations. I’m a huge believer in the power of positive affirmations during pregnancy, and really there’s no down side, so feel free to try it and apply it to any aspect of your life 🙂
Wednesday, December 9, 2015
I had been awake about an hour when I felt my first contraction. I was determined that my baby would be born on Friday, so I tried to ignore the contractions and hoped that they would go away. I went about my normal daily routine of feeding Carter breakfast and cleaning up after him, getting him ready for the day, etc.
Contractions were 7 minutes apart and 15-20 seconds long.
After completing a labor preparation hypnobirthing script with Scott I realized that the baby would not be waiting until Friday, so I decided to get my self-hypnosis mojo on. I got in a warm bath, dimmed the lights, and listened to a compilation of positive affirmations specifically for labor and delivery. After the bath, I got back to my daily life and started to clean my room and did laundry. I also started putting together my bags for the birthing center.
For each contraction I would sit on the birthing ball and bounce or squat a little and do a little bounce with my legs while swaying my arms side to side in the air slowly. I honestly felt like I was doing some sort of rain dance, by myself, in the kitchen. Carter would constantly ask: “Mommy, what you doing?” over and over and over again until the contraction was over and I’d tell him that I was dancing. It’s hard to explain labor to a 2 year old.
Contractions were 5 minutes apart and 30 seconds long.
Around this time I got Carter from Scott (I had asked Scott to keep Carter occupied while I took a bath, then I took advantage of the alone time and did the cleaning and packing) and he *in an annoyed way* said that he can’t keep watching Carter, especially since I had only asked for 20 minutes and instead took almost an hour to come get Carter. Well, I was livid because I was in labor and I thought I had expressed that to Scott the previous hour when I asked him to help with a hypnobirthing script to prep for delivery, but apparently Scott did not catch my drift. I got all “crazy labor lady” on him and told him that he can’t try to make me feel guilty for needing a little bit of his help while I’m trying to freaking labor over here!
Contractions were 4 minutes apart and 30 seconds long.
Scott quickly finished up a work project, got over his embarrassment, and came to apologize to me because he didn’t realize that I was actually in labor, he thought I had just had a couple light contractions. Well, yes, my contractions were very light but I knew that I would be having this baby today and I thought I had made that clear earlier that morning, but obviously I hadn’t, so I apologized for getting mad at him and not being more clear about being in labor. I wouldn’t have apologized because I felt that I was in the right, but I mean, you can’t have ill feelings toward your spouse before you bring a baby into the world!
Around 11:45 I decided to call my midwife and let her know what was going on with my labor. (Side note: I had my prenatal appointment the previous day and I was not dilated at all. Like nothing. At the appointment my midwife said I’d be lucky to deliver on my due date on December 17th.) So when I told my midwife about my contractions she recommended that I lie down and take it easy for an hour or so to see if the contractions would go away. I told her I had already tried that and it didn’t make a difference. She said to drink more water and try again.
I didn’t drink any more water.
Contractions were 4 minutes apart and 30 seconds long.
I was feeding Carter lunch and doing my squatting/dance thingy for the contractions when my mom and I had this conversation:
Mom: “Are you in labor?”
Mom: “Don’t you want to wait until Friday?”
Me: “Yeah that would’ve been nice, but I don’t have a choice at this point.”
Contractions were 2-3 minutes apart and 1 minute long.
My water broke. It was a new experience for me since my water didn’t break with Carter until I was pushing. It was a big gush during a contraction, but I thought I had accidentally peed myself. Scott was standing maybe 2 feet away from me and I yelled, “My water broke! … Wait, I might have just peed!” and then ran to the bathroom. More like hobbled. When I made it to the toilet I had another big gush and realized that my water had indeed broke and it was filled with meconium. I was worried.
Scott called the midwife and very frantically explained that I was in labor and that my water broke and then he rambled some stuff and I guess was asked a question by my midwife and he rambled some more stuff and I could hear the midwife say, “Can I please talk to Emily?” Scott didn’t quite know what he was talking about or what the midwife was asking. He’s so cute and flustered when a situation is tense!
I talked to my midwife and told her that my water broke and there was a lot of meconium. She asked about my contractions (2 minutes apart and 1 minute long) and she asked me what my gut feeling was. I said, “I’m having this baby.” She then advised me to come to the birthing center and she’d see me soon.
Scott walks out to the car and tells my mom and Carter who are outside in the front yard that we’re having a baby today! My mom says good luck and bids us farewell as I come outside despite Scott’s wishes for me to wait for him inside (he’s such a gentleman if I’d let him be). As we’re driving to the birthing center, Scott sees something fly off the roof of the car and get run over by the car behind us. I didn’t see any of this, but I did witness him go, “OH NO!!!!!!” and grab his face while muttering “no no no no no no no no no no” a lot. He wouldn’t tell me what happened and why he was so upset for a few minutes and I was a little annoyed. He finally, and very solemnly admitted that the camera that he had left on top of our car by accident was now crushed in a lot of little pieces all over the road behind us. I laughed, probably not the best thing to do, but the camera falling off the car was not as serious of a thing as his reaction made it out to be.
I continued to put on my makeup in between contractions and tried to keep my body from pushing the baby out.
We made it to the birthing center and I passed the receptionist with a quick hello, letting myself into the back. I had a contraction in the hallway and was compelled to let out some low moans as my body was pushing whether I wanted it to or not. The midwife ran from the room she was in and said, “Sounds like you’re having a baby!” (Side note: I really do love my midwives, but at this particular moment when I was involuntarily starting to birth my baby standing up in the hallway I was not feeling the sarcasm, even the positive state-the-obvious sarcasm. Just get me in the room lady!) I gave a very slight chuckle and started walking to the room without the midwife.
I was staring at the most beautiful purple 6lb baby girl I’d ever seen.
After birthing the placenta we found out that I had what is called a velamentous cord insertion. This is when the umbilical cord is not attached to the center of the placenta, but rather to fetal membranes that go to the placenta. It leaves several exposed blood vessels that are vulnerable to rupture and can result in a stillbirth. We feel very blessed to have had a very short labor and delivery and that everything went smoothly. Had she gotten much bigger or had an intense labor, the blood vessels could have burst. Since the labor and delivery did go so well, the midwives and nurse were all taking pictures of my placenta because none of them had ever seen a velamentous cord insertion in person in their combined 3000+ births.
We absolutely loved our experience at a birthing center, but my midwives told me that since my labor/delivery is so fast that I need to plan on home births from now on. SCORE! My husband was very skeptical of doing a birthing center birth and said we would never do a home birth, but after our experience with this delivery and the midwife’s suggestion to do home births my husband is all on board!