This is going to be long! You have been forewarned!
Let me start on Tuesday morning, June 26th. I woke up feeling fantastic. It was 2 days before my due date and, while I was feeling impatient, at the same time I was really enjoying the last few days of being pregnant.
Robin and Jason played so well together all morning. I cleaned the bathrooms (minus the tubs and showers) and got all the laundry done. After that I started putting together a last minute labour playlist. Robin and I did some dancing in the living room and I jokingly said, "Maybe this will make the baby come!"
At one point I was sitting on the couch while the kids played quietly and I thought to myself, "I feel so peaceful. I wonder if this is the calm before the storm."
Jon came home nice and early and I made breakfast for dinner. Pancakes, eggs, bacon and sausage. I couldn't stop eating and must have downed at least 5 pancakes.
After dinner, Jon went to play hockey and I got the kids to bed. They were so good and I was still feeling positive even though I was exhausted!
At around 10pm I had a sudden, painful contraction that took my breath away. I didn't think much of it but about half an hour later I had another contraction that was equally painful. I texted Jon to see where he was at (he was only a minute away) and opened my contraction timer app. Jon got home and I didn't say anything about my contractions since I wasn't sure. But another one hit and I told him that "this might be it."
So, we settled ourselves on the couch and watched TV while I timed the contractions. They were about 10 minutes apart and very intense. A few hours passed and they didn't seem to be getting any closer together so I suggested we head to bed. I was in bed for maybe 3 minutes when another contraction came. It was the worst yet, lasting almost 2 minutes. Even though my contractions were only 7-8 minutes apart I told Jon to page the midwife. I could feel things were happening down there.
It took about 30 minutes for the midwife to arrive. In the meantime, my best friend came over to look after the kids in case they woke up. By the time the midwives came my contractions were 5 minutes apart.
My midwife came with a student and asked if it was ok if the student check me after the midwife. I told her that was completely fine. How else would she learn? So, my midwife checked me first. Her only comment was, "Oh my!" :lol:
Next, the student checked me. She noted that my bag of waters was bulging and guessed me to be at 8 cm's. The midwife corrected her and said I was more like 6-7. I was surprised! I was expecting maybe 4 or 5cms at the most.
I wanted to get in the tub right away but Jan (my midwife) asked me to wait until they had everything set up since things usually progress really quickly once in the tub. So I waited out the contractions in this position until the tub was ready.
The only thing that helped ease the pain of a contraction was leaning over like that and bouncing on the balls of my feet.
Once I was in the tub the midwives had my best friend steep them some tea. Look how much they're enjoying themselves!
The last contraction I had out of the tub I felt a lot of pressure and almost the urge to push. When I told the midwives they quickly prepared everything they would need and had me get in the tub. In the tub, Jan checked me and said, "Oh!" again. She whispered to me that I was at a 9 already and then she let Lauren do a check. Lauren determined right away that I was at a 9.
They quickly phoned the second midwife (we're required to have two midwives at a home birth here). Jan asked me if it was alright if they held off on breaking my water until the second midwife got there. I said that was fine. In the meantime, she said if I felt the urge to push I could go ahead and do what felt natural to me.
About 10 minutes passed without a contraction. It was as if my body was resting before the hard work began. I felt an incredible urge to push with the next contraction so I just let my body do what it needed to. I felt a sudden popping sensation as my water broke. I was looking in the water and I could see the gush of my waters mixed with a touch of blood (probably my show).
As soon as my water broke I could literally feel her head rush down to fully engaged. I couldn't have stopped pushing if I wanted to. It felt like an eternity passed. The burning was too much to bear. But everyone kept telling me how great i was doing. I was focused on Jan's voice as she told me the progress. "Lots of hair! There's the forehead....eyes....nose....mouth...and her head is out!"
I stopped contracting so she told me to stop pushing. I knew Josephine's head was out and yet I could feel her legs and feet kicking me still from the inside. The next contraction came quickly. The burning wouldn't stop. It felt like I'd never get her out of me. "Little pushes now, slow down!" She still wasn't out! One final contraction and I pushed like my life depended on it. I felt her slide out and I swear, that is the best feeling in the entire world. Jan scooped her out of the water and into my waiting arms. I placed her on my chest and just started laughing. I did it! I couldn't get over her little face. It was perfect and pink.
I looked up at my beaming husband and then I heard a small voice. It was Robin! She woke up just as Josephine was born. My best friend brought her into the bathroom. Her eyes were huge and her voice was so tiny. "I didn't know you were having the baby now, Mommy!"
Robin hesitantly asked if she could touch her. This is one of my favourite pictures.
I had a bit of trouble delivering the placenta. There were a few scary minutes where it seemed to be stuck. One lobe wouldn't come out. But, after an extra small push from me it came out all in one piece.
Jon took Josephine from my arms and I got out of the tub with lots of help from Jan and Lauren. They dried me off and I walked to the bed. I was shaking like a leaf. I kept reassuring everyone I wasn't cold, I just couldn't stop shaking. It was the adrenaline. The shaking subsided once I was on the bed and Josephine was back in my arms.
We had lots of skin to skin contact and her first latch was amazing.
Jon was so proud of me and I must say, I was so proud of him. He was an amazing support. He knew exactly what to do and say and was so confident the entire time. When I first brought up having a home birth with him he flat out refused. He came around and became my biggest supporter and now he wouldn't change how we did things for the world.
ETA: She was 7lbs 13oz and 20 inches long. She was born at 5:04am.
If you made it to the end of this epic novel, thank you for reading!
Awwww. Rose I'm crying. You're amazing. Seriously. And the part where Robin woke up. AWWWWWWW. <3
I'm SO SO SO glad you got everything you wanted. I'm SO proud of you. SUCH an inspiration for other women. <3
and Josephine is DARLING. I told you already, but she is GORGEOUS! <3<3<3
How precious!! Made me tear up.
Congrats mama!! :D
Awww I got all teary eyed reading that.
Congratulations to you and your family, Josephine is absolutely perfect! And good job mama! you did absolutely amazing!
Amazing and beautiful! Congrats!!!!!:)
Amazing! Shes precious, Congrats!
beautiful family!! and amazing story!!! congrats!!
Awe how beautiful, congrats. I am glad everything went so well.
Dude... I'm almost in tears here, that was beautiful....
Thank you for sharing, Rose! Lots of love to you and your beautiful family :D
Omg Rose. This had me in tears. I am so incredibly happy for you and your family. You are such a strong woman and mother. ♥
Quoting rosamor:" This is going to be long! You have been forewarned! Let me start on Tuesday morning, June 26th. I woke ... [snip!] ... he wouldn't change how we did things for the world. If you made it to the end of this epic novel, thank you for reading!"
I made it to the end of your novel with lots of tears!
Congrats! Sounds like a pretty easy birth. :)
Omg. Congrats! She's beautiful! You did an amazing job!!!
You looked great after! Gorgeous family, congratulations!