Thursday, November 4, 2010

Birth Story Part 6- Laboring at Home

Continued from last post (which is contined from 4 previous posts. Please start at the beginning).

Hub and I need to make a brief stop at babysitting family #1’s house to drop off a car seat, and I called the midwife on call during this time. I say, “I am having regular contractions and they are mild to moderately painful, with one that was very painful.” She asks about bloody show, timing, etc. She says, well, you can come in or stay and labor at home for a while. Since we had no idea how far apart the contractions were, and felt we had hours I told her, we’ll labor at home. I had an ulterior motive: I wanted to use this website I’d found (its an app too). So we got home around 11-11:15 am. We set up the computer in our living room, got out the Swiss ball and a pillow*. I labored at first by walking up and down the living room and kitchen. At the beginning I was shaking my hands in response to the pain as if to dry them. At this point the pain was moving from being localized right behind my pubic bone to radiating outward to the outside of my lower hips. The contractions were 6-8 minutes apart and about 1.5 minutes long. They came on rather quickly and took a long time to subside. Their peak was about 10 seconds long. We figured this wasn’t in the 2-3 minutes apart range which would signal time to go to the hospital.

I changed my strategy rather quickly to draping my upper body over the Swiss ball with my knees on the carpet. Hub would crouch down in front of me and hold my hands a count for me. After a contraction, I would slide off the ball and lie completely loose on the carpet with my head on a pillow and let my mind drift. The next contraction would come and since we are planning on not having any more children, I really tried to attend to every detail of the pain… since I will never get to experience this again. In the quiet I could feel a flame of heat starting low in my pelvis and spread up and outward. As it spread, I got up from the floor, started breathing in a controlled manner and hub would jump up and join me. Don’t tell him this, but at the beginning he was doing opposite of what I was breathing. I would be breathing in and he would come over and say "out-2-3-4". After a while he caught on.

We did this for about 1.5-2 hours, so that’s maybe 20 contractions. Pretty soon the contractions were getting intense enough that I couldn’t “hang on” to my breathing, and my body would pant and moan from the pain. These contractions did not come one after the other but after the third one really painful one, we called the midwife on call again. This time Hub spoke with her, still 6-8 minutes apart. The midwife repeated that we could labor at home or come in, our choice. At this point I looked over at my husband. He was sweating and a little pale. I said, “We’ll come in, just in case”. We took the time to print the screen of the website and headed out the door. Hub lead and I followed. He had run ahead and opened the car door and as I was walking down the steps, I was slammed again by a contraction that was COMPLETELY out of control. I grabbed the handrail with white knuckles and my deep groan turned to a light scream. At that moment, I though “Uh-oh, this is pretty serious”.

* this pillow is covered by a pillowcase that was signed by all the attendees at my shower. They signed in fabric marker, so it can be washed. It is by far my favorite shower gift. They say things like: "Breathe", "This too shall pass", "You are a flower blooming (an imaging technique) and "better you than me :) "

1 comment:

  1. It's a good thing I already know everything turns out ok ;)