I got an unexpected surprise when my client texted me at 11:30 pm on Sunday night saying her water had broken! Sitting at 37 weeks, I never thought I would be attending a birth this week! I encouraged her to try to sleep (ha!). In the morning, contractions were still pretty mild and far apart. Around 11:00 they decided to head to the hospital and make sure everything was ok.
Contractions still weren't picking up, so around 3:00 pm, mom was given cytotec to try to get things rolling. And it worked! Dad texted me at 4:2o to head over, and I arrived at 5:00 pm. Mom was leaning over the bed and moaning through each contraction. I couldn't believe how intense things already were!
Around 5:20 I helped mom to the bathroom and she got the urge to push! Several minutes later the nurse confirmed that she was complete and it was ok to really go for it. By 5:45 we were in full pushing mode.
Dilation occurred quickly, but pushing proved to be more of a challenge. We pushed in every position we could think of, and it didn't seem like we were making any progress. Mom not only had to find endless amounts of energy, she also had to deal with a lot of anxiety and self-doubt. I would tell her she was doing a great job, and she would respond with "I am?"
Then she would find times of inner strength and say things like "I'm ok" and "I can do this." Her affirmation going into this birth was "All the strength I need is within me." And that proved to be very true! This mom was tough, and she pushed for hours!
We tried so many different positions, and upright positions helped her the most with focusing her energy to her baby. But they are also very tiring and her legs were very tired and crampy. One charlie horse left mom in agony! But she was a total champion and pushed in at least 10 different positions.
During a time of strong discouragement, dad told her she was doing a great job. She honestly asked "How do you know?" Then her sassy personality came through and she yelled "you don't know!" to him. It was pretty hilarious. I assured her that I knew she could do it! In between contractions she would also say "this is so dumb!"
By 9:30 we needed more help. The doctor came in and turned on the lights to get her adrenaline going and the nurse administered a low dose of pitocin to make the contractions stronger and longer. We also changed the music from relaxing to energetic. Mom turned on Rihanna, and this doula had a very hard time not dancing. :) The lyrics "where have you been all my life?" played loudly and I thought about all the years of infertility this couple had gone through, and how they were so close to finally meeting the baby they had been dreaming of.
And at 10:14 pm, this sweet little girl was finally born!
This couple did not know the gender of their baby, and mom instantly turned to her husband and said "you're screwed!". Ha!
(And PS, I super love this photo!)
Emotions were strong and it was an amazing experience to see all the hours of pushing, and years of waiting and dreaming come to this moment.
Dad was hesitant to hold his baby, saying he wasn't ready or capable. He was, of course, wrong! He immediately settled into fatherhood!
Baby latched on quickly, and I snuck out of the room in complete wonderment that my Dec. 14th client delivered in November!