I shared Wonder Baby's birth story already, but this is how my beautiful little two-year old came into the world.
Everyone told me that the baby would probably be late. First babies are almost always born late apparently -- something like 70% are late. Then, why is the due date not later, I ask you? Toddler Girl was due on our anniversary, and as a rather large pregnant woman, we asked her to come early. Luckily, she agreed.
The night before I went into labour, the big earthquake in Chile happened. Mr SH's family is in Chile so I phoned him at work. First I made sure he knew that I was not in labour; then I had to tell him that his family was MIA as the earthquake had wiped out all communication. Eeeee. We found out that they were okay before TG came along (barely), but we weren't able to contact them for a while. It was very nerve wracking stuff.
The next night I went to bed at 11pm. I had had maybe two contractions, and I thought, meh, if I'm in labour I'll wake up. An hour later I woke up. I read online once that contractions feel like an impacted fart. If you don't know what I'm talking about, good for you. If you do know what I'm talking about, it's true!
I got up, made some toast with cheese (for energy!) and took a bath while calling Mr SH again. "No, this time I'm actually in labour!" "Yes!" "Please come get me to the hospital!"
Mr SH works night shifts, if that didn't make sense. Then I called my midwife. There are actually three of them and they just take turns with the pager. I got to know all of them in my prenatal care. I said "I'm in labour! I'm in the bath! Should I come in now?"
She replied, "Oh it'll probably be hours and hours still, but if it makes you happy, come in."
It did, in fact, make me happy. I live 40 minutes from the town with the hospital, and babies come fast in my family. Mr SH got home, we ran around in circles for a couple minutes (okay no, I got out of the tub and got dressed) and then got in the car. We also called my parents at some point.
When we got to the hospital, the nurses said, "Oh, you're barely in labour; it'll be hours and hours still. I'm going off shift, but I'll probably be here to help when your baby comes, you know, tomorrow."
To which I replied, "Feels like plenty of labour to me!"
It might have been about this point that I started yelling a lot. Yelling was my preferred form of pain management. I found it surprisingly effective, probably because I was so loud. The whole hospital, and doubtless most of the surrounding area, knew I was having a baby. I was okay with this. I liked the yelling and crushing Mr SH's hand (only hold two fingers, very important!).
I hung out with Mr SH and the nurses, who were lovely, and came in every now and then to make sure I was good. I liked telling them that I loved it. One nurse was sure I wasn't really very far along, because no one says that they love it. Apparently sarcasm as pain management is not common. I kept asking if I could go in the tub now? Please? And they told me that they didn't want to slow me down, so we would wait until I was really in labour. Moral of this story? Don't tell your nurse that you love contractions, or she will not fill the tub for you! And oh yes -- our hospital has a tub built in the maternity wing, shared between two rooms. My hospital pretty much rocked.
Finally, they let me in the tub! At this point (8ish in the morning) my midwife had arrived. Mr. SH was in the tub with me so that I could continue to crush his hand. My water broke and I went through transition in the tub. I liked the tub because it did help a lot with the pain, and I got a comfortable-ish position in there. But they didn't want me to push in the tub. This was okay, because there wasn't anything really to hold onto, and I was quite tired from only getting one hour of sleep. I was kind of bummed though, because I did want to have the baby in the tub, but I trusted my midwife's judgment.
I remember labor as 8 hours total, but I'm not sure... this is what happens when you write your birth story two years later! Up to this point, even in transition, I did not regret the lack of drugs at all. I was always thinking, this is hard, but I can do more if I have to. But I hated pushing. This was my wall; this was where I just wanted to quit. But I couldn't because there was a baby lodged in my pelvis. She even had hiccups at this point. Pushing was horrible! They made me squat and I just wanted to lay down, but laying down is not the fastest way to have a baby. There might have been crying at this point.
I pushed for an hour. Then, finally, a baby girl was born at 10:30 AM. The midwife has me written down as 3.5 hours of actual labour. She was 6lbs 14oz and 20.5 inches long.
I got to snuggle her right away while they checked her out. Mr SH cut the cord and there was blood everywhere! Seriously, he cut the cord and blood sprayed across my face. It was a charming moment for all -- apparently the cord had not quite finished pumping.
Then it took an hour to get stitched up. I wish I was exaggerating, but it fully sucked. I asked if I could have the epidural now? No. She didn't tell me how many stitches I had, but it took 6 weeks to heal. The stitches were probably the worst, because I was done! But I had to lay there for another hour with my legs shaking from exhaustion.
When they finally sat me up and gave me back TG, my parents came in to meet her. They had been around for a while, but my dad had to leave for a bit because the yelling was rather traumatic. I called all the important people then (except Mr SH's parents and brother... booo).
I felt amazing. They aren't kidding about those natural birth hormones! The nurses kept telling me that I should try and sleep, but I was on a crazy adrenaline rush. I grew a person, inside me, and then gave birth in eight hours with no medical interventions! So I was pretty much invincible. I actually had a couple nurses come in to tell me that I was awesome. Then we hung out and watched Canada win the Olympic gold in hockey. It was pretty funny -- all the nurses were watching in the next room and my midwife checked on me during commercial breaks. We do indeed take our hockey rather seriously in Canada.
We stayed for a couple nights until I had the breastfeeding down(ish). It was not an easy journey for us. The nurses were lovely and helpful, and I felt very supported. Still, it was great to go home where people don't keep waking you up to give you awful hospital food or sweep the floor or a million other things.
So, that was Toddler Girl's birth story. Nothing traumatic happened. Mr SH says it was the most intense day of his life. I agree. But for me, it was also a rite of passage. Perhaps I went in a girl and came out a woman. Maybe if I could handle that, I could handle anything motherhood threw at me.
It's hard to believe she's already two, but on the other hand, I can't imagine life without my sweet little girl!
Natural Birth Stories part 6 of 121. My Mom's Birth Story by Mrs. Bee
2. Emma's Birth Story Part 1 by Mrs. Marbles
3. Sam's Birth Story by Birth Stories
4. Baby H's Birth Story by Mrs. Hopscotch
5. Wonder Baby's Birth Story by Mrs. Superhero
6. Toddler Girl's Birth Story by Mrs. Superhero
7. How Baby HH Came to Be... by Mrs. High Heels
8. Baby J's Birth Story by Mrs. Pen
9. Susie's Birth Stories by Birth Stories
10. Baby Confetti's Birth Story by Mrs. Confetti
11. Baby Boy Heels' Birth Story by Mrs. High Heels
12. My Birth Story and Giving Birth Again by Mrs. Chocolate