March 11, 2009

Childbirth = Empowering

I don't feel like I could say that after Maddox's delivery because I don't believe I let my body do what it knew it could do. I struggled to 7cm dilation before opting for an epidurl. Juliette's delivery was night and day different from his and I left with a very different outlook. And, I truly believe that 99% of why it was so different was the support that I had from the my awesome husband, my delivery nurse, my mid-wife and my doula. Probably all of 1% of it was my determination. I really didn't believe in myself going into the hospital on Monday. But, when I was surrounded by people who believed that I could do it and actually helped me cope, my labor breezed by and before I knew it, I was having my beautiful baby girl plopped on my chest!

We left the hospital yesterday less than 24 hours after giving birth and I feel almost 100% normal. I'm a little sore, but nothing NEAR what I was with Maddox. I've actually started laundry this morning and everything! We are resting and not over-doing it, but it's just nice that I actually feel like some-what of a norml human being!

I guess I'll go ahead and share my birth story from my perspective. Kyle it up on the other site and I think did a great job of describing everything. But, I want to share it here as a way to process and to remember from my side of the story.

Sunday night, I was really tired of being pregnant. REALLY REALLY tired. I was seriously considering scheduling an induction for Tuesday or Wednesday. I had pretty much tried everything to naturally induce labor, except for taking Castor Oil. So, I decided that $4 and diarhea was a far cheaper price to pay than paying for an induction (Yes, my thriftiness even comes into play in regards to childbirth as well). So, before bed, I took 2oz of castor oil (looking back, I probably should have taken 1/2 that). Any way, my body cleaned itself out from 3am-6am. Fun fun. I was able to go back to sleep from 6-7:30. Maddox woke up at 7:30 and I laid in bed with him for a few minutes and started noticing cramping across my lower belly that were coming 8-10 min. apart. Since they felt different than any contractions I had had up to this point I thought maybe it was intestinal cramping from the castor oil. Finally, around 8:30 I decided to let Kyle know what was going on because whether I was in labor or not, I was pretty miserable and should go to the Dr. to be checked out and make sure everything was okay with the baby because I couldn't tell whether she was moving or not.

My appointment was at 10:20. The midwife came in and checked my cervix and I was dialated to 4cm (Thursday, I was 2cm). She casually told me she thought I was in the early stages of labor and recommended I go and walk around for a bit and come back at 2pm. Since we had Maddox with us, we decided to drive back to our town and take Maddox to our friend's who were watching him. The weather was really icky and Kyle needed to send out a few e-mails for work, so we went over to the church to walk around the gym. By the time we actually started walking, it was about 12:45 and the contractions really seemed to have intensified quite a bit. We couldn't even make it 1/3 of the way around the gym in between contractions, so we timed a few and they were coming 2 1/2 minutes apart, so we decided the hospital might be a better place to be since it was 15-20 min. away from home.

We arrived back at the hospital at 1:15 and of all wonderful things, the contractions had begun to move into my back (like last time). Our wonderful labor/delivery nurse settled us in and set me up to be monitored for a bit until the mid-wife could come in and check me (she was in a c-section). She taught me a breathing technic to make room in my uterus for the contraction and then to force my body to fully relax out of the breath. Let me tell you, it was an incredible breathing technic. Let me know if you want details, kind of hard to explain in writing. The midwife came in at around 1:30/1:45 and checked me and was pretty startled when I was 6-7cm already!

At around 2pm, I climbed into the jacuzzi tub for a little bit of relaxing and that was a nice change. At 2:30 the midwife recommended breaking my water because Juliette's head was tipped down towards her chin and thought if she broke my water it would get her head in the correct position to progress things even quicker. The contraction I felt after she broke my water was probably the most intense one I felt, but with the help of all of my support, I was able to get my head back in the game and get back in control of the pain. I labored on my side with the midwife putting pressure on my back to relieve some of the pain there. Kyle was holding my hand and squeazing my hand (they wouldn't let me squeaze because they wanted me to relax). Everybody was talking about how stoic I was because I just laid there and didn't make a peep.

At 3:00 the midwife noticed one of the contractions made me move funny and asked me if I had gotten the urge to push. I was exactly sure so she checked me again and I was dilated to almost a 9 but the front of my cervix wasn't dilated yet. So, she asked me if it would be okay if I flipped over onto an almost hands and knees position with me on the bed leaning over the back. I said that was fine and they helped me move in between contractions. I had one contraction in this position before I was overwhelemed by the urge to push. I was fully dialated in one contraction! They just said to go with the natural urges of my body. 9 minutes later, she was out! My natural urge when I felt the amount of pain from pushing her out was pretty much to get her out as fast as I could, so that's what I did :-D

They plopped my beautiful girl onto my chest and I got to hold her for like 15 minutes before they even took her to be weighed. My first comment was "she's so tiny!" and the nurses and mid-wife looked at me like I was crazy and they said, "no, that's a big girl!" She weighed in at a whopping 9lbs. 3oz.! Talk about all that anxiety last week not being necessary! Oh, and the Dr. that did the ultrasound was wrong, too :-) He said on her due date maybe 8 1/2 lbs.

I have taken all of a couple of ibuprofen to help with some inflammation and that's it! I can't believe how different this recovery is than last time around. Hope I didn't gross anybody out!


Candice said...

Thanks for sharing your story! I'm so happy that all went well for you! Praise the Lord!

Cheryl said...

Thanks for sharing your story and I'm proud of you. It is amazing to be in such control through the pain. The team you had sounded awesome and I know that makes a huge difference! Hope all continues to go well for you. How does Maddox like his sister?

Hannah said...

That's a great birth story Emily! Yeah! I'm so happy for you. It really does make such a difference having great support.

Anonymous said...

i was so relieved to hear that this birth was so quick and she came out so easily. i remembered maddox being more stubborn and long, and i was hoping for the opposite this time for you! hooray!
it is such a great feeling to deliver a healthy baby naturally too!! i am looking forward to doing it again!
congratulations again, she is so stinking beautiful!

Heidi said...

Thank you so much for sharing your side of the birth... and I'm so happy for you that things went well! I can't wait to meet Juliette... she's beautiful!

Shelley said...

dude...that's freaking awesome! I am so happy and excited for you and can't wait to meet my little niece!

Kelly said...

Yeah - this is so wonderful to hear. This is exactly why I want to be a doula. You trusted your body and you rocked that baby. You should feel like a rockstar!


Donielle said...

I'm so excited for you! And now so very anxious for my little girl to get here next month! I'm glad everything went so well for you and for your recovery as well.

*and if you get a chance, totally send me that breathing technique! :-)

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