When I woke up Sunday morning, I saw a text from my client from 6:00 am saying she was having contractions every 20 minutes or so. Being a first time mom, I figured she would stay there for a day or so. But by 1:30 pm her contractions were 5 minutes apart, and by 3:30 she was wanting some support.
I arrived at 4:30 and found mom at her computer. In between contractions she sent instructions to the teacher who is going to cover for her during her maternity leave. I could tell her contractions were getting intense, but she was popping right out of them and very conversational. I couldn't tell if she was really in active labor yet or not, so I suggested hitting the pavement.
It was a gorgeous Sunday for a walk! Mom was cranking out the contractions, and some people driving by yelled "get a room!" as she labored on the sidewalk. So funny! (And I was loving her cut polka dots and denim shirt!)
By 6:30 is was clear that mom was in active labor, and we went to the birth center at 7:30 pm. Mom was very instinctual and very quiet. She changed positions frequently, and really just followed what her body wanted to do. I was really impressed. So impressed that I couldn't tell if she was progressing or not because her demeanor never changed!
At 12:45 am the midwife decided to check and see how far along mom was, and discovered that she was 10 centimeters! Her bag of waters was bulging, and it seemed like the end was close. But an hour later, the urge to push still hadn't come, so my client decided to have her water broken to try and bring on the urge to push.
Most people think that once a woman is fully dilated that she will start pushing out her baby. And sometimes it works that way, but other times it requires patience as the baby's head molds and descends into the birth canal. This process of "breathing the baby down" can take anywhere from several minutes to many hours.
The urge to push was nowhere to be seen. So we did a lot of position changing, hip moving, stair climbing, vocalizing, hip squeezing, tub sitting, and waiting. I was blown away by the strength and endurance of my client. She never complained, never appeared to be frustrated or concerned, never asked how much longer it would take. She just kept breathing through her contractions and trying everything I suggested.
Finally around 5:00 am mom began to have the urge to push. And once it came, mom knew exactly what to do. Her baby's head began to crown in the tub, and unlike most mothers who wince in pain as their skin is stretched and burned, my client started LAUGHING! In 13 years, I've never seen a woman respond to crowning with a laugh. She appeared to be overcome with joy and excitement, and it was such an amazing thing to witness.
At 6:18 am, Monday, September 26th, Silas slipped into the world.
Weighing 7 pounds 15 ounces
The cord was short and wrapped around him, so he had a bit of a time figuring out how to breath right at first. The midwives knew exactly what to do, and within a minute or two, he was breathing and back in mom's arms. Phew!
The room was very dark, so the pictures don't do any justice to how cute this little boy is! His face is just perfection, and he was so happy to snuggle in with his mama!