My guess date was January 22, 2009. I was 42 weeks pregnant the day Charlotte was born. On Thursday, February 5 at 2:30 am I woke up with some cramp like feelings – thinking could this be it! I went back to bed, well tried to. When I woke up that morning at 5:30 I had cramping like feelings on and off, I read through some papers to see if I was in the first stage, my husband was up excited and already videotaping.
I went back to bed one more time thinking this isn’t it don’t get too excited. When I woke up I decided to call my midwife and let her know and she told me to keep her posted if anything changed. That day I walked and had lunch with my girlfriends not really knowing I was in early labor.
That night around 7:30 the pressure waves got really strong, they were 4 to 6 minutes apart and lasting around 45 to 60 seconds. I called my midwife and she asked if we wanted her to come out and I said not yet, she told my husband to check and see how dilated I was. That was funny, we could never figure out how to check. I wanted to be alone so I kicked my husband out of the bedroom.
That whole night I was walking, swaying, taking baths, trying to sleep, listing to Hypnobabies, getting on facebook, I couldn’t wait for the sun to come up it was the longest night I ever had. The pressure waves felt like really strong cramps, like I needed to go to the bathroom really bad and couldn’t – the toilet was my favorite place to hangout. I kept telling myself that I was strong and that women do this everyday, to surrender to the process, that I would see my baby soon.
Around 7:00 in the morning I went and woke my husband up and asked him to come lay with me in bed, I was so tired two nights without sleep! He just held me and helped me relax through each pressure wave. It was intense, then it hit me, oh my god I have to shit right now! I ran to the bathroom, well waddled to the bathroom and just as I got to the toilet, WHOOSH, my water broke! I yelled to my husband, “call the midwife my water just broke everywhere!”
This all happened at 8:20 in the morning, the pressure waves continued to come and were just as intense, all I wanted to do was push, at this point the weirdest noise was coming from me, I had no idea I could sound like that! My midwife got on the phone with me and she asked how I was feeling, I said all I want to do is push and she said go ahead. I called my friend and let her know that my water broke and birthing time had begun and she could go ahead and let everyone know to light a candle. I am truly blessed with the women in my life today; I was very supported through my pregnancy. My midwife showed up and let me be, I realized at that point I was somewhere else, I was present but within.
She asked if she could check me and I was fully dilated, this was around 10:20, she let me know that I would be having my baby today and soon. I sat on the toilet and my husband sat on the floor supporting me, he was wonderful. At this point my midwife’s assistant and apprentice had shown up, they were getting everything together. I am not too sure how long I birthed in the bathroom, on the birthing stool, on all fours. I went back and forth lots. At one point they were checking the babies heart rate and it was low and they moved me but it was still low so I had some oxygen and it started to be normal. At no point was I concerned or scared; I knew everything was going good. I started getting tired and made the mistake of looking at the clock, it was sometime after 12:00. Oh my god, when is this baby going to come!!
I drank some water and ate some cantaloupe, during my whole birthing time my pressure waves stayed strong and consistent, they never slowed down. Each time I pushed I felt like I was getting no where, I was told I had a cervical lip and I think the baby may of been posterior. Finally I got back on the birthing stool and my husband could see the head, I reached my hand down and felt the top, it was the most amazing feeling ever! Here comes my baby!
I felt what I had always heard of, the ring of fire! I slowed down and stopped pushing, I allowed myself to stretch, and it is amazing how much control we have over our bodies! When it stopped burning I continued to push, my baby was crowning, I can’t explain the power, joy, calmness, serenity, and excitement that happens in that moment. I am a woman! My baby’s head was out and I paused knowing any minute I was going to meet this wonderful person that I have grown to love in the last 9 months! My husband was ready and he caught her and handed her straight to me, my baby in my arms finally!
It was worth the wait. My baby was beautiful! We had to warm her up and get me off the birthing stool. My husband and I sat on the floor of our bedroom leaning against the bed looking at our little one, that was when I looked and confirmed it was a girl. Our little girl, she was born at 2:55 pm, after 4 ½ hours of pushing.
It didn’t seem that long to me and it never seemed hard, I enjoyed every minute of the birthing process.
My midwife asked me to try and push a little to see if the placenta was ready to come, so I gave a little push and GUSH all over my midwife and her assistant was blood! I never had heavy periods so this was a lot of blood! She let me know that it was fine and to try and push again and that is when the placenta came, it was huge. We sat and laughed, they cleaned everything up while my husband and I enjoyed our daughter. Soon after that Glenn cut the cord and they examined the placenta. Her daddy took her so I could clean all the blood off of me and get in bed. My midwife checked me to see if I needed stitches, no tearing! My baby girl nursed right away she was a champ, I was the one making it hard, it was kind of awkward at first.
My husband, baby and I laid in bed. She was beautiful, weighing in at 9.1 lbs, 20 ¾ inches long (we think, she didn’t want to get measured), 14-inch head and shoulders! I would have to say this was the most amazing experience in my life, I am truly grateful for all the support I had. My midwives were amazing, the power of women during a birth, I can’t explain. They knew how to touch and when to touch, what to say and when to say it, the strength. I am grateful to be a woman and the power we have, I now know my purpose in life.
We decided a few days later to name her Charlotte Lillian, everyday I have with her is a blessing, and she reminds me everyday what is important in life… Love