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Tuesday, December 14, 2010

My First Homebirth!

Since several of you have asked, and since I am very excited about it...I wanted to tell you a little bit more about my first completely natural homebirth of my daughter, Kailana. I hope it inspires you in some way!

My daughter, Kailana Alese, was born on Saturday, Dec. 11, 2010. She was due on Dec. 3rd, and I had been in early labor since late in the night of Dec. 5th. I woke up before midnight on the 5th with a bit stronger contractions than I had been having, but I shook it off as nothing much and went back to sleep. At around 2 am, I called my midwife and told her that I had now been having contractions for about an hour every 3-4 minutes. She said that she was finishing up at another birth 2 hours away, but that she and her apprentice would be at our house in 2 hours. I decided to clean the house some more, walk around, and rest a little. It was so peaceful to be up walking around the house with my husband in the quiet of the night. At around 3:30 am, my contractions started slowing down all of a sudden and then went back to around every 10 minutes not much more painful than Braxton Hicks contractions. Oooooooh! I was mad! What was going on???

So, my midwife and her apprentice arrived a bit after 4 am, and we talked about everything that had happened. She suggested that I go to bed, and perhaps the contractions would pick up again. Well, we woke up at 8 am, and the contractions were not picking up. She asked me if I wanted her to check if I was dilated, and I did. I was a tight 2 cm, and my cervix was quite thick yet. Not good. I felt bad that I had called them and dragged them here through a snow storm in the middle of the night for nothing. I felt bad that I still wasn't going to have my baby yet. But, the midwives were so reassuring that I had done the right thing, that they wanted me to call again right away if I wanted, and that they understood how emotional I must feel about seeing them leave and still not having a baby in my arms. They just had so much compassion and love for our family and situation. It really gave me strength and encouragement!

For the next 5 days, I continued having quite regular contractions, but they were not getting any we waited....and I grew impatient...people kept asking if we had the baby yet, and I was starting to lose my cool.

Then, Friday night, as I was sitting on my birthing ball, trying to open up my pelvis and let gravity work, I felt a little wetness down there (if you know what I mean). Sure enough, when I went to the bathroom, it was a little damp. I thought maybe my water was breaking, but I didn't want to get hopes up. So, we went to bed. I woke up at about 2:30 am, and my contractions were a lot stronger than what they had been. I started timing them, and they were about 3-4 minutes apart again. So, I decided to call the midwife again. She said she would be there asap, and I got pretty excited! Here we go again...

A few minutes after talking to my midwife, the contractions really picked up, and I was down on my hands and knees swaying and breathing. This is it!!

The midwives arrived, and I spent the next 7 hours or so sitting on my birthing ball swaying my hips side to side, breathing through each contraction. This was definitely not like my last child's birth! This time, I was in the comfort of my own home, in my pajamas, reading a book between contractions, watching the sunrise, listening to my CD of birds and nature sounds, chatting with my son when he woke up, and just feeling strong, peaceful, and comfortable in my surroundings. My midwives went to sleep to give me as much space as I wanted to just do my own thing. I moved in and out of different rooms, had my morning protein shake, didn't have to worry about new nurses always coming and going, monitors and IV's stuck on and in me. I felt so at ease, even though it was still quite painful.

At around 10 am, my midwife checked me for the first time, and I was at 7 cm. Yay!!! Contractions were getting worse and worse, and she said that if I wanted them to break my water, just to let her know. I waited awhile longer, and then they broke my water. I sat on the birthing stool trying to see if that is how I wanted to start pushing, but it was uncomfortable to me. So, I moved back into the shower, and through all the pain, ended up on the floor of the shower ready to push.

I moved out back to the birthing stool - not comfortable, and onto my side on my bed.(which they had covered very very well with plastic sheets and pads) I pushed a little while like that, but then ended up pushing little Kailana out on my back on the bed. It turned out she had her arm up with her head, which made it a lot harder to push her out. My midwives were great with warm compresses and such to help me from not tearing, and I ended up with only a little tiny tear, most likely because of the extra hand and arm that she stuck out.

I had done it!!! I gave birth in the most natural setting I can think of - my own home with no drugs or other interventions with my wonderful encouraging midwives. And I mean it when I say they were encouraging. They helped me so much without being pushy or in the way. They offered so many words of strength and love. I feel blessed to have had them at my daughter's birth!

An hour or two after the birth, the midwives prepared an herbal bath for me to go in with my baby. It helped with healing me and my battle wounds, and it helps with the baby's cord to dry up faster and heal well. It was a special time for Kailana and I, and it was very relaxing.

My daughter is a healthy 8 lbs, 20 1/2 ounces, and she is doing great, other than bruises on her face that are healing. My midwives were also extremely supportive and helpful in starting breastfeeding. Last time, I wasn't producing enough milk for my son. Nonetheless, I kept at it, and just supplemented with some formula too. This time, they gave me lots of herbal teas to help boost my milk supply and really helped her to latch on the right way soon after she was born. I have had no problems so far, and I love being able to feed my baby all on my own, giving her all the nourishment that breastmilk provides!

If you have any questions about a home birth, using midwives, natural birthing, or anything I wrote about, please email me or comment below. I love to help in any way I can!!

1 comment:

  1. Lovely story! I will be adding your link on my blog very soon! Thanks so much for sharing!



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