My due date was October 15th, my first 3 babies were born at 40 weeks 1 day, 40 weeks, and 40 weeks. I had high hopes that my fourth would follow suit. My first 3 labours went like this, lose mucus plug, start contractions 3 minutes apart; first labour was 10 hours from first contraction to birth, second labour was 3 hours and 56 minutes from first contraction birth, and third labour was 1 hour and 57 minutes from first contraction to birth. So my expectations for this labour were to sneeze and have a baby. I went to my 40 week appointment on my due date and was 4cm, which meant things were looking promising. My midwives said they would see me later most likely.
Well October 15th came and went, and then each day came and went, and then it was October 22nd and I was 41 weeks. I went to my appointment and asked for my fourth sweep (I had gone earlier in the week for one). Once again I was told I was 4cm but certainly looked ready to give birth. I stopped for a Starbucks on the way home because you can do whatever you want when you are a week overdue. I spent the evening watching Mighty Ducks 2 and eating Apple Crisp, because again you can do whatever you want at that point. I went to bed ready to take the girls to my parents the next day so I could go to fetal assessment the next day to check up on Zalah.
October 23rd dawned bright and early with me having to run to the bathroom because I had to pee. Except I just kept peeing…well not really but I was leaking fluid. We got the girls ready to go and the fluid was not stopping and I was having non-timeable contractions. I told Stefan I was going to call the midwife instead of going and that we should call my parents to come and get the girls instead of us taking them in. The midwife agreed to come over to see where we were at since my fast labour history promised a quick delivery. I also called my doula Darla to come over.
For the next few hours I sat on a ball and rocked back and forth. I walked around our birth room (aka our guest room), and kept having contractions. Eventually they started coming more regular. My midwife checked me to see where I was at and to check to see if my water had actually broken since I was leaking so bad. Well she checked me and I was still 4cm and my water was still intact. Which meant I just had a hind leak. I was so disappointed that nothing was happening. Labour was taking longer than I had expected and this played with my mind. The hours ticked by and I could not feel her engaging which worried me. I ended up crawling onto the bed to rest except contractions started coming faster and stronger. My amazing husband, and my wonderful doula were awesome and stroked my arms and head through each contraction talking me through it. I wanted to give up, and I was angry at how long it was taking. I still could not feel her head moving down, and my water was still intact. The midwife wanted to check me again but I refused because I was not getting any breaks between contractions and I didn’t want anyone to check me.
I kept feeling like I needed to push, but I also knew she was not where she needed to be for me to push which made every contraction that much worse. I flipped onto my side in hopes that it would help and my contractions came on stronger and my water broke. With my water also came meconium. The next few minutes were a bit crazy. All of a sudden I felt her head drop down into place and I knew I needed to push her out. Everyone was telling me to push slowly and to ease her out. Well that didn’t work. With the next contraction I pushed and her head and whole body shot out rather fast. She was placed on my chest right away. But she was not crying. Suddenly her colour changed and she went limp. The midwife clamped and cut the cord and whisked Zalah to the table. They gave her a few puffs of oxygen and rubbed her with towels. It felt like an eternity waiting to hear a cry. I remember feeling so scared. And then that first cry came and she was handed back to me.
I was able to nurse her and all felt right with the world. I didn’t need stitches which was a first for me and that made those first few bonding moments even better. Her breathing was rapid for the first few hours and eventually came down to an okay rate. She weighed 8lbs 1oz, and was 21.45 Inches long, she was born October 23rd, 2015 at 1:47pm.
I loved having a homebirth. My bed is so much more comfy than a small hospital bed, and my pillows are way better. My shower is cleaner and so is my toilet. The fact that I could make the room a peaceful place leading up to her birth allowed me to be in a space that made me feel safe and secure. After the birth I was able to take my time getting up and cleaning off in my shower, I didn’t feel rushed. While I was showering my doula stripped my bed and threw in a load of laundry. I came out to fresh clean sheets, and when I got into bed my favourite fluffy blanket was put on top of me and it was warm from the dryer. During my labour I had Jack Johnson playing, and lavender essential oil in the diffuser. I was encouraged to eat and drink, and never had the pressure of pain meds, IVs, and constant monitoring.
Our big girls are in love with their new sister, and Stefan and I love our family full of girls. And this was the best picture of the four of them hahaha.