With my third born’s 4th birthday coming up this week, it is bringing back so many memories.
My second born son was 3 months old, and I remember specifically struggling to breastfeed him, he was a fussy baby, he didn’t sleep well, he was constantly crying, he just never seemed content, so after a lot of tears, bleeding nipples, engorged breasts and way too much cabbage in my “face” I had enough of breastfeeding. So I quit. I was tired; I was stressed out, and had enough. And then just like that… I was pregnant…. AGAIN.
I will never forget the day that I did that pregnancy test. I just stared at it and was in so much shock I didn’t know if I should cry or laugh. I remember standing in the kitchen and saying to my husband, “Love, choose a hand?” He chose and I gave him the pregnancy test. He looked at me and jokingly said “oh this is an old one hey?” I replied laughing (like I do when I am nervous) and said “No, this was this morning. I am pregnant!”
He was just as shocked but laughed and hugged me. We were both surprised but so grateful. We knew of a few friends that were struggling at that time, so we were just grateful and expectant for our baby.
We had our first appointment with the midwife, a few days later. When she saw us she just started laughing. I said to her “I don’t know how it happened so quickly” she started explaining “when a mommy and daddy love each other”… and we just started laughing.
My pregnancy was great in the first trimester, I mean after 2 previous pregnancies I almost felt like a pro. But in my second trimester I started experiencing a lot of back pain, and I started getting really bad back spasms after a long busy day. Obviously it got difficult the further along I got in my pregnancy because I still had a little baby that I was carrying around and an almost 3 year old toddler running around and just doing what 3year olds do.
My third trimester I had way too much stress the closer my due date came. I was stressing for the birth, knowing what exactly happens when giving natural unmedicated birth.
My amniotic fluid started leaking from 32 weeks, and I was put on bedrest for 4 weeks, which was pretty impossible, because I had two small boys under the age of 3 running around. So I decided to go and visit my parents in law, as my husband was away for 4 weeks for work. I eventually got 2 cortisone injections to help my babies lungs develop in case I went into labour by 36 weeks.
Well 36 weeks passed, and I was fine, 37, 38, 39 weeks, no baby, so I asked the midwife if she can induce me naturally so that I can go into labour. You see my firstborn’s birthday was 2 days before my dew date, and me being the planner type mom, had already planned a birthday party, and I could not disappoint my 3 year old toddler and not have a party. (Madness I realize now, but hey I was in the last phase of my pregnancy, no woman thinks straight then.)
We planned everything so well. I knew exactly what I wanted. The photographer should already be at the birthing unit when I get there, my playlist was set up, my bag packed with all my birthing essentials except the shampoo and hairdryer that I forgot, and my babies new born outfit was ready. I drank my castor oil and orange juice concoction at 6am, it normally took 2 hours for the bowel movements to start, and then with that my contractions would normally start and I would go into labour (previous labour experience).
But none of that happened. So at 1pm we went to the birthing unit and met the midwife there, she did an internal checkup and I was still 3cm dilated from 4 weeks prior. We decided to do a stretch and sweep, and see if I start getting contractions.
She kept on asking me “How are you feeling now? Any pain? Any pressure?” And I kept on saying “No” almost confused as to what was happening.
All of this is happening with the photographer happily taking shots, and building conversation. Then it was time for an internal check again, and then the midwife suggested we break my water (I always wished my water would break naturally but it never did) and I knew if she did break my water there will be no stopping the process. So we did it and waited for the birthing process to start… after about 1 hour I was dilated from 3 cm to 8 cm with absolutely no pain or any contractions.
My photographer looked at me with this puzzled look and asked the midwife “Is she not supposed to be screaming” And the midwife just started laughing, and said “patients who do water birth don’t normally scream, because it is such a relaxing environment.” When I was 8 cm dilated I decided to get into the birthing pool, you know just for incase I start getting contractions, hehe, I don’t want that kind of pain just jumping out of nowhere! Eventually it was time to do the internal check up again and I was fully dilated, the “fun” was about to start…
The photographer was ready, my husband was ready, the midwife was ready, but I was starting to freak out. Up to this point it was still ok, but now that baby had to come out…
After pushing for about 35 minutes, drowning myself every time I tried to push, trying to get a comfortable position and kick against my husband, who was in the birthing pool with me by the way, my baby boy was born. A healthy 3.8kg and 52cm long. My husband had the opportunity to catch our third born and cut his umbilical cord after about 10 minutes. Once again I was blown away by Gods faithfulness throughout the whole birthing process.
My photographer was in awe and tears; you see she had never experienced a live natural birth before, as she had 2 Cesareans. And this was her first birthing photoshoot.
In short, what I experienced is called a supernatural childbirth.
With my first pregnancy my midwife gave me this book called Supernatural Childbirth by Jackie Mize. I read it and hoped and prayed and believed I would experience such and amazing birthing story, and eventually third time lucky. Each of my births were different, and so unique and special.
With a third baby you already have most stuff so it’s a bonus, you kind of feel like a pro when it comes to birthing, breastfeeding, nappy changes, growth spurts, etc. But one thing is for sure, not one of my boys have the same personality or temperament, they have different interests when it comes to food, toys, games and activities. But I love all 3 of them, and am so grateful God chose me to be the mom of 3 precious boys. Without the help of a supportive husband and daddy I don’t know how I would have been able to handle them.