Saturday, October 28, 2017

Third Time's a Charm

Wanting a completely different experience than with her first 2 children (both born in the hospital), my latest client opted for a birth center this time around.  Being almost a week past her due date, we've been checking in with each other often the last few days. I checked in with her in the early afternoon yesterday, and the poor thing was sick in bed with the flu.  But as we texted throughout the day, I started to wonder if it was really the flu or if it was early labor.  By early evening I was getting more convinced.  Her contractions were coming about every 7 minutes and lasting about 40 seconds.  A great early labor pattern, but she did say they were already really uncomfortable and she was worried about how much worse they would get.

Since I live quite a distance from her home, we decided to meet at the birth center.  She arrived at 10:30 pm and said that her contractions had spaced out a little more during the drive, but that they were still painful.  We quickly headed upstairs to the birth suite to figure out where we were.  The midwife listened to the baby's heart rate, and was somewhat concerned because it was elevated.

Mom was checked at 11:05 pm and was 5 cm and 50% effaced.  Contractions were intense, but still short, and the baby's heart rate was still elevated.  Since mom hadn't been feeling well that day, she wasn't able to eat or drink much, so the midwife decided to do a bag of iv fluids.  If mom was dehydrated, that could be the reason the baby's heart rate was so high.  And if we couldn't get the heart rate lower, we'd have to transfer to the hospital.

After a few pokes, the iv was in place.  In situations like these I usually see the iv really speed things up, or really slow things down!  But by 12:30 am, mom's contractions were visibly more intense.  I put on relaxing music and helped mom remember to release her tension on the exhale.  As soon as her iv was out, she hopped in the tub, around 12:45 am.  Dad hopped in, too!

The tub brought relief and mom was in the zone.  She was tired and rested in between contractions.  She had been chatting up until this point, but once she was in the tub, she really started to tune out the world.  By 1:15 am her contractions were really close together, and by 1:35 she was needing to vocalize through each one.  I reminded her to keep her voice low and relaxed, and I knew she sounded like a woman who was about to have a baby!  

I even made it into a picture.  The sweet midwife on call snapped this on her phone.  :)


At 1:55 mom announced she was feeling a lot of pressure.  Dad turned on some music they had wanted to listen to and told his wife how proud he was of her.  He was beaming with anticipation, just like a child on Christmas Eve.  He kept saying how he couldn't wait to the hold the baby, and he provided counter pressure on mom's back during each contraction.

At 2:05 the urge to push was very strong.  Several minutes mom announced the head was out and dad was extremely thrilled to be holding the head in the water.  And at 2:10 am, their baby was born.

Welcome Becks!  Born Saturday, October 28th 2017 at 2:10 am.

(And at 2:15, they took their first family selfie.)

Dad had some much anticipated one-on-one time while mom got out of the tub. This might be the happiest dad I've ever seen!

By 2:50, mom and baby were both ready to start nursing, and by 3:15, he was latched perfectly.  There was a rousing Halloween party nextdoor, but I'm pretty sure we had an even better night!

Monday, October 23, 2017

Just in Time!

Sitting at 41 weeks and 2 days, my client's water broke around 7:30 am on Sunday, Oct. 22nd.  To be honest, I hate when the water breaks before labor starts.  It puts mom in this weird limbo phase of not being in labor, but not able to live life normally either.  Her contractions were mild and far apart, and her water leakage was abundant.  We kept in touch over text throughout the day, but there seemed to be little to report.  

In the early evening, mom and dad began to wonder if they should go to the hospital to get some antibiotics since she was GBS+.  It's such a hard decision.  She wasn't in labor, and once you go to the hospital, it's unlikely that you'll leave.  But they also didn't want to risk anything.  I encouraged her to talk to her care provider and see if they could get permission to get the antibiotics and then go home.  

Her doctor was very supportive and told her it was up to her, but while she was on the phone, her contractions suddenly picked up!  Starting at 8:00 pm, her contractions were intense and coming every 4 minutes!  We could quickly tell that it was time for me to head over!

I arrived at 9:00 pm and found mom laying on the floor of her living room and dad rubbing her back during contractions. I encouraged her to slow down her breathing, but overall she was coping wonderfully.  We stayed like this for a while, and at 9:45 dad gave mom a religious blessing.  He blessed her with power and capacity, and told her that her baby already loves her.  Shortly after, dad's parents arrived and his own father gave him a blessing, as well.

Mom was coping well, but I could tell that each contraction was stronger than the one before it, and I felt it was time to head to the hospital.  With such short breaks in between, it was quite difficult for mom to get ready to leave the house.  There was even a moment or two that I worried we wouldn't make it in time!

 (I loved seeing my book on their shelf!) :)

Thankfully, we avoided a roadside delivery and arrived at the hospital at 10:30 pm.  I quickly updated the nurse on the situation.  At 10:40 mom was checked and was 6 cm.  I felt she was further along than that!  Several minutes later mom said she was starting to feel the urge to push and was making low vocalizations, very typical of a woman about to enter the pushing phase.  

I put on some relaxing music and encouraged dad to sit down next to the bed.  (He suffers from chronic pain and I could tell it was starting to happen.)  The doctor arrived at 11:00, and mom was happy to see that her personal doctor had made it to her birth.  She was checked again and was 9 cm!  That's more like it!  Mom was totally in the zone.  Breathing deeply and even appeared to be sleeping in between contractions.  The contractions spaced out a bit, which is typical right before pushing.

At 11:30 mom was complete and the urge to push was coming.  I could tell dad was really struggling with his own discomfort, but he never left his wife's side.  We were so close!  Mom found her inner strength and quickly  figured out how to push effectively.

And at 11:48 pm, on Sunday, Oct0ber 22nd 2018, this little chunk slipped in to the world!

Weighing 8 pounds 3 ounces, and 21 inches long.

Mom and dad looked their son over, commenting on how he got his mom's fingers and toes, and his dad's neck.  

By 12:10 am, baby was nursing like a champ!