Well bees, Baby MtnHoney is here!!
At 41w10d, and after 4 membrane sweeps since 39 weeks, I started 3 days of stimulating labour with lemon verbena tea and castor oil cocktails under our midwives care. I started having contractions in the pm Sat Sept 21. Still nothing to “write home about” by the time we went to bed, but at 3am things started happening, and by 4:30am Sunday we were really on our way.
Problem was, my pattern was inconsistent and kept slowing down a lot during the day. Finally from about 2pm on I was having them really consistent every 5 min- strong! The midwife came over to check me at 7pm when I reached the “4-1-1” stage (contractions 4 minutes apart, one minute long, for one hour)…. And I was only 4cm. Wtf?!
I was disappointed, also since my water had broken in the morning (during an intense contraction, on all fours, left a puddle – fun times). I got into the birth tub finally even though I wasn’t farther along because the pain was starting to be unbearable. I stayed in for an hour, labouring hard. My BFF and doula was amazing- along with my wife they had all four hands on my lower back during every contraction and with loud, low toning that’s what got me through. i am woman , hear me roar!
From 8pm on, my back labour was increasingly unbearable. I was confused because I knew that the baby wasn’t in a posterior position, and I thought that was what caused back labour. I felt my resolve at having a natural home birth slipping away as the pain became SO excrucitating.
At 11pm the midwife came by, checked me again: 5cm. OMFG!! As soon as she said that I knew I couldn’t carry on without pain meds. It was crazy to get to that place since I had been so set on a natural, home water birth. I know my experience is unique since I’ve talked to lots of friends who birthed at home and watched home birth videos. So I don’t want to scare any of you!
So off to BC Women’s hospital we went. Unfortunately it was a busy night so we ended up in triage for 3.5 hrs!! Our midwife got us a canister of nitrous oxide to help take the edge off while we waited for a room. Boy, I never huffed so much laughing gas before. But it mostly worked.
The plan was to get an epidural and then try augmentation with oxytocin. BUT things didn’t go that way. As soon as we got our room (finally!) something changed with the baby’s heart rate and before we knew it, emergency cesarean was being offered. Before yesterday, I had thought cesarean would never happen to me. But since the baby’s vitals were dropping and after the 24+ hours of intense labour i had endured, I agreed.
The spinal felt very strange for sure and the OR was surreal. everyone was friendly which was great. I had to let go of my hoped-for ideal birth and embrace what was happening. When my wife came in with her scrubs on she looked so cute! I felt a lot better once she was there. The procedure is so quick and then I heard my baby crying!! My wife got to stand up and see him over the screen right away, and then she went over to him while they cleaned him up and tested him. I heard her singing a lullaby while they did his Apgar test. I’m proud to say he scored a 9. 🙂
We had extra time in the assessment area because there was a shift change going on, so we both had lots of skin to skin right away. He latched really easily too, yay! Breastfeeding is going well, thanks to rooming in with baby and the support we got early on. I was discharged after only two nights. so good to be home.
I am of course processing a lot of emotions: sadness. loss. relief, confusion, joy. in the end what matters is a healthy baby AND a happy Mama. and in our case, we have TWO happy Mamas. Our treatment at BC Women’s was amazing and what I thought could only be a terrible procedure was actually still a beautiful experience.
And here he is!! Born Monday September 23 at 5:09 am (at exactly 42 wks)