So now that you have a pretty good background story from my previous post, you can now experience the labor through the eyes of a young, dumb and full of faith 23 year old woman. (Warning: this is a birth story, and there is a lot more detail than me previous birth story!)
It’s Labor Day!
My mom came to stay with us for 2 weeks, and that morning she asked me if I was sure that I knew what was going to happen that day? I said yes, I have read everything there is to read about natural birth, I watched Youtube videos, I was educated. (or so I thought, I never read the part where they explain what happens when they do an induction.) In short you experience a more painful delivery because the induction process quickly brings on stronger and more regular contractions, compared to natural labour where the contractions have the chance to ramp up slowly. There are different methods of inducing a patient, I actually read about a balloon method just last night, this was new to me. It’s called a Foley bulb induction, it is a procedure where your doctor inserts a catheter into your cervix. One side of the catheter is deflated. Once inside your womb, your doctor inflates the balloon with a saline solution. The pain may subside once the catheter is in place.
Just a Spoonful of…Castor oil
On the morning of 27 of April 2011 I drank a tablespoon of castor oil. Now if you are not a 60’s or 70’s kid I am sure your parents never force fed you castor oil as a kid. I drank “Scotchi-mul-shion” which I now know is actually called Scott’s Emulsion. iI also only learned today that it is orange flavoured cod liver oil (insert gag) It’s basically it has high levels of the omega-3 fatty acids, EPA and DHA, and very high levels of vitamin A, and vitamin D. It is widely taken to ease the symptoms of arthritis as well as other health benefits. Think I should start giving this to my boys again, I am sure they would love it haha. The castor oil made me gag instantly, it’s disgusting. The purpose was to clean out my bowels before I go into labor, because one of the things that I didn’t know was that you can poop while giving birth! I was not ok with that! Neither was my husband. Now there are some people that frown upon this, but keep in mind I was doing this under medical supervision. When your tummy goes (to that extent) it can cause contractions, so it can put’s you into labor. Ever wonder why it’s so dangerous for a pregnant woman to get gastro? Well it’s for that reason.
Back to the story. The midwife was at our house at 11:00 am, by this time my bowels were pretty much flushed, she did an internal exam, I was 2 cm dilated. After she inserted the induction tablet into my cervix, we went for a walk around the block. She told me that I might start feeling contractions and if it get’s too intense we can go home, we made it around the block 1 and half times and then it was time. My contractions were super intense and very close. I hardly had time to breath before the next one came on. My water didn’t break naturally so the midwife did it with what looks like a crochet hook, I hopped on a pilates ball and all of a sudden it was this gush of water. Some woman experience either a gush or a trickle of water when their water breaks.
At around 6 cm dilated I was so tired and in so much pain I asked for Laughing Gas (Nitrous Oxide) for Pain Relief. But that didn’t really work in my opinion. It made me even more tired, and I felt extremely weak, and I started vomiting. I was very active in my birthing. I could stand in the shower for pain relief, the water has very soothing properties, hense my decision to do a water birth with my next 2 boys) I hopped on a pilates ball, I walked around, I squatted, it was great not being confined to a bed for the entire time. I kept on declaring my scriptures out load while bouncing and rocking and squatting. From 1cm dilation – 8 cm it took roughly 4:30 hours.
By the time I was 8cm dilated I had about no energy and there was something that was stuck in front of my babies head, and I needed to bounce on the pilates ball to shift it, at that moment the contractions were so intense I could not open my eyes to read my scriptures anymore, so my husband started reading them out loud for me to hear, him and my midwife were praying over me and rubbing lavender oil on my lower back. At that time a second midwife came in for back up, I have never met the woman, I was butt naked, but I was in too much pain to even feel shame. This continued for about 3 hours. When I was 10 cm dilated the midwife said I could lay on the bed, that wasn’t my initial plan but I had no strength to stand or squat. So my husband laid behind me and held my legs up so I could push. After I pushed for 40 minutes my baby was born. In those 40 minutes I really felt like I wasn’t able to do it. My body felt weak, but my spirit was strong. The midwife had to do an episiotomy, (a surgical cut made at the opening of the vagina during childbirth, to aid a difficult delivery and prevent rupture of tissues.) I heard about in our birthing classes but nothing really prepares you for it. This was done without numbing the area, it didn’t hurt, but the sound was gross. I remember, this was the breaking point for me, the midwife kept on saying I can see the head, but I just could’t push hard enough, eventually my husband asked that they bring a mirror, and as soon as I saw his little head crown it was 1 push and my baby boy was born.
The midwife placed him on my chest and it was such a special moment. My first born, my baby boy. I was a momma. All the pain was worth it! At that moment I didn’t care about myself anymore, my heart split in 2 and it opened up to make room for another human other than my husband to love, and serve, and care for.
Afterwards they took our baby boy and daddy cut the umbilical cord and then they weighed him, and while that was happening the midwife stitched me up, but she did inject me 2x to really numb the area.
My baby boy weighed 4.18kg and was 54cm. He was a big boy!
Every one has a special birth story. And that is your story. It is the most empowering feeling to give birth to a baby, whether it’s natural or by C-section. My mother had 3 C-sections, her body could’t birth a baby naturally. She was in labor for 24 hours and could only dilate 5 cm. So I was always worried that would happen to me too. My fear of hospitals was my driving force to trust God with everything that I had to birth my babies naturally without medical interventions. And praise God it happened like that.
Firstly my gynaecologist didn’t have faith that I could birth such a big baby. When my baby was 9 months old, I made an appointment to go and see her, when she saw my baby she asked me how much he weighed. I told her, and she immediately asked if I had a C-section, I said no, all natural at home. She was shocked. She eventually started working with my midwife and doing the emergency C-sections and sending her patients to my midwife for V-backs. (Vaginal delivery after caesarean)
My GP was working with the midwife, he went on holiday the week I went into labor, he said I would’t go into labor that week. He said if he comes back the following week we would probably have to do a C-section as my baby weighed 3.5kg 1 week before he was born. When we called him after my baby was born he was shocked to hear that he was so big, and that everything went so well.
My mom was in shock in the room next door, she didn’t want to come in while I was in labor, she kept praying for me in the room next door.
My husband was in shock and so proud of me. He said what I did was equivalent to playing 7 rugby matches back to back. That was huge for me. The way he looked at me for months afterwards was so special, he believed in me, he supported me, he loved me more than ever.
The highlight, except for our beautiful healthy boy, was when the second midwife walked into the room, the one I didn’t know, the first thing she experienced wasn’t a crazy 23 year old girl screaming and in pain rocking on her arms and knees…NO! she experienced the presence of Jesus so tangible in the room it was impossible to deny that He was there. As I type this out I have tears rolling down my cheeks! I could not have done it without the strength of the Lord, the support of my husband, the faith and prayers of my mother and my 2 loving midwives! God is my strength and NOTHING is IMPOSSIBLE for Him!
As a freebie I have added my six scriptures that helped me throughout my home birth, you can drag and drop them, and print it out and use them too. Stick them on the wall or cupboard in your birthing unit and declare it over and over while you are in labor.