Nine days before my due date, Mom and Dad woke up Friday morning after Mom’s water broke at 4:20. She labored at home as her contractions were irregular. We left for the birth center just before 2pm and made a quick stop at the salon to get Mom’s nails done. 😉 We arrived at the birth center at 3, saw Becky (the midwife) at 3:30, and settled into our birth room at 4pm. Mom was 4cm dilated and about 90-95% effaced so Becky had swept her membranes (not fun) but when our awesome friend and photographer Jodi arrived a couple of hours later Mom’s contractions still weren’t regular.
Mom, Dad, and Becky tried lots of things to get Mom into active labor. By 8pm Becky was getting concerned because we were racing the clock. Florida state law says if a mom isn’t in active labor by 24 hours after her water breaks, she has to transfer to the hospital! That meant we were down to our last 8 hours.
Around 10:30 Becky decided to check Mom’s progress. Only 5cm. That’s not a lot of progress in 6.5 hours. But that exam seemed to do the trick because suddenly Mom’s contractions got a lot stronger and a lot closer together. They never did hit the magic 5-1-1 mark (when the water hasn’t broken, moms are supposed to stay at home until contractions are five minutes apart, one minute long, for one hour), they just jumped from being erratic to insane!
By 11pm Mom was definitely in labor. It was time to start getting the birth tub ready and call in the doula and the birth assistant. Michelle, the doula Mom and Dad had been working with all year, arrived around 11:45 and started helping Mom with her breathing. Michelle’s calming voice reminding Mom to breath and keep her moans deep and low really helped Mom to work through each surge. Around midnight Becky checked Mom again and she was finally up to 8cm! Dad, Becky, and Michelle helped Mom settle into the tub for the home stretch. Mom floated on her stomach to let the water help ease her contractions and finally, around 1:45am, it was time to push. After a few minutes though, I started having d-cells (my heart rate was dropping) so Becky and Michelle told Mom to switch onto her back.
Mom was so exhausted it took Dad, Becky, and Michelle to help her turn over and then for the rest of the time Dad had to keep holding her up under the arms so she had room to breathe. That helped my heart rate up a little but they were still concerned and didn’t want Mom to waste any time pushing me out. After a couple of pushes my head and hand were out! That’s right, I had my right hand to the side of my head when I was delivered! Then it only took a few strong pushes, I popped out, and Becky realized why my heart rate had been dropping. My umbilical cord was wrapped around my neck (and wrist) four times!!! Becky did this amazing little spin, spin, spin (under water) and freed me in a matter of seconds before placing me on Mom’s chest so I could recover from the shock of being born.
These three pictures were taken by Michelle. Stay tuned for more pictures taken by our wonderful friend Jodi who stayed with us into the wee hours of the morning.
Mom snapped this pic of me when she woke from her nap this morning.