by Cindy Hamilton
My intention for my third pregnancy was no fear… yet, I was so fearful all the way until the end. To make it worse, the baby was almost two weeks past my due date (I couldn’t believe it!).
At 41 weeks and 2 days, I was barely able to walk. I insisted in having my midwife strip the membrane to speed up the process. It’s something I didn’t think I would ever try but it was actually not as bad as I thought.. my midwife was so good, I barely felt any pain.
On July 12th (48 hours later), I felt my first contraction around noon and told the midwife. Luckily, my sister came a few days earlier to help out and was able to bring my two girls to a friends house for a play date (I prefer to birth with only a few people around). My midwife came around 1:30pm and I was 5cm. The main concern was that the baby was posterior (sunny-side up)…Head down but the baby is looking up at my tummy (ideal position is head down looking at my back).
As I had contractions, the baby’s head kept hitting my back, so back labor was very painful- it felt like I needed to poop. So, I tried a few different positions to make the baby turn but nothing happened. The last position they had me try was to have me sleep on my right side and put my left foot up like I was doing lunges. Around 2:30pm, the midwife wanted to check me before I got into the birthing tub to labor more. As I rolled over to the midwife, I felt the baby do something.. she checked me and to all our surprise the baby flipped!
Right when I got up from the bed to go into the birthing tub, my water broke. Laboring in the water felt really good as it was less painful for my back. Ujjayi breathing (sometimes called ocean breathing), meditating and zoning into my hypnobabies in the background really helped too. When I got louder during contractions, the midwife knew I was getting close. I was so lucky to have to same midwife for all 3 of my births. She checked me again and I was 9cm! After one or two more contractions, I felt the urge to push even though she said I was only 9cm. I just went with my body anyway. I pushed for 18 mins and I thought the baby was just crowning (like my first who crowned what seemed like eternity) but in actuality the baby’s whole head was already out. No one had said anything to me.
The whole time.. I kept thinking “how do I get this baby out?” because we all know I have big babies and I was afraid it would be like my first birth where I pushed for almost three hours. When I heard my negative thinking, I quickly used my positive self-talk and told myself “I could do it!” I prayed and then talked to the baby (in my head) and said “okay, we could do this.. I could help you but just be easy on mommy.”
As I finished talking.. I had another contractions (who knew it was my last) and this time the baby came right out! I was so surprised because I thought I would have to push longer.
Brooklyn Lee Hamilton was born at 3:43pm (about 3.5-4 hours labor). I pushed on all fours and labored on all fours because it felt good in that position. I pushed the placenta out when I got out of the water and onto my bed.
Daniel is usually in the front with me to hold my hands and give me encouragement but he felt I was fine so he stood in the back and witnessed everything. Unlike the other two births, he wasn’t able to see much which I didn’t know.
He saw the baby’s head come out, the baby sliding out and this time he was able to catch the baby! They then put her on my back to get some skin to skin. Daniel loved the experience and thought it was the best birth ever! It was the best experience for him and I. He even teared up because it was such a beautiful and peaceful moment. Even though I was the most afraid going into this birth, it was the most calm and peaceful birth experience of them all. But I told Daniel (even during labor)… I don’t want to do this again. LOL
I want to shout out to my midwives Amy and Brittany for making my dream birth plan come true – a water birth. They did not give up on making the baby turn when I was so fearful.
You guys even had Daniel catch the baby too (something he never had thought to do)! Thank you Phet and Pedro for volunteering to help out with the girls and just about anything we needed- you guys are such great friends and we are so blessed to have in our lives. Thank you to my sister Jenny who flew all the way from Minnesota to not only mother me, but all my girls for a whole month. You were the only one who could put Brooklyn to sleep for the first two weeks-I don’t know what we would have done without you here. You have sacrificed and done so much for our family and we are truly grateful from the bottom of our hearts. Lastly, thank you to everyone who visited, sent us messages, thought of us and showered the whole family with love and gifts to Brooklyn. We appreciate every one of you.
Read Cindy’s second baby’s homebirth story