My due date came and went just like I expected it to. Halloween. I was due on Halloween and I was very happy to have that date pass as I did not want a Halloween baby. For months family and friends watched my belly grow and all of them said "you will go early" and each time I told them, "nope, I have a November baby, I know it".
I knew I was getting close for my body to deliver, the pressure, the pain, the braxton hicks. (I'll spare the female parts of knowing too). My other babies were both born on Fridays so I chose the date Novemeber 4, 2011. I was wrong. However, I really thought the date 11-1-11 would be a neat birthday as well.
So on 11-1-11, I was trying to think of all the natural ways to induce labor. Sex? Castor oil? yeah, none of that sounded appealing, so I just went on with my day. I woke up, took Miss E to daycare and ran errands. Honestly, I don't know what else I did that day. It seems so long ago. What I do know is that Miss E came home ill with a high fever. We nursed it all night, I took JC to swim practice because I knew it would be that last one I sat at for awhile. Upon returning home, I find Mr. CE and Miss E rocking, sweating and one high fever.
"Great", I thought to myself. I am going to have a sick toddler, then I will get sick and have to go into labor. Funny thought that was, but I had it wrong. After cooling her down, I went to bed first, preparing myself to take second shift with sick toddler. About one hour later in bed, I lifted my heavy,swollen leg, turned and felt a pop. I shook it off and went back to sleep. Ha. A half hour later I thought I peed the bed.
Next thought? "My water never broke on it's own before, it didn't now". I got up, took a shower, texted my doula and then called my midwife. Yup, as I was talking to her, my water broke more in the bathroom. No denying it now, I was going to go into labor with a sick toddler at home.
When I got off the phone with my midwife she encouraged me to get rest and my contractions had not become regular yet. I quickly called my mother and oddly, said "are you sleeping? It's time, head over." Get rest?? Yeah, not...
I wrapped a towel around my large contracting belly and leaned into Miss E's room where my husband was rocking her. "my water broke, I gotta get stuff ready...shit". From here on it was a blur. In my mind I had a few more days of cleaning the house and well, packing for the hospital too. There I was, my water leaking, it was midnight and my bags were not packed.
I remember Mr. Ce trying to get some sleep and my mom walking in. I was nervous. Last time I had my girls to help me labor. Now its me, alone at 2 in the am while people are sleeping around me. As I laid on the loveseat, with my mom sleeping across the foot rest, I timed each contraction on my phone. Over the next hour they went from 7 minutes apart to 3 minutes apart and lasting about a minute.
It was 3 am.
I woke everyone up, and soon I was texting my doula to meet us there. We left the house at 3:17am and got to the hospital by 3:40am. I have a text telling my doual it was room 707 at 3:44 am and not to forget to go into the ER entrance.
At 4:01 she texting me that she was coming in and I quickly texted back "I am only a 4".
I was shattered that I was only 4 cm dialted. With Miss E I came into the hospital at 7cm and the intensity was the same. I felt panicked. How was I going to do this naturally if I am having this much pain and have so far to go!
At 4:05 I had the tub running for labor. I was anxious but looking forward to the warm water.
This is where I lose all sense of time in my labor.
I remember my husband nervously cracking jokes, talking to my doula and midwife. I know at one point Mr CE took a video of me in the tub that I have yet to see. Knowing that my mother could not watch it, I know the moans were smack in the middle of transition.
Transition, you mother, you. Back labor? I despise you. The contractions were getting stronger, I i was trying everything I remembered that helped in Miss E's birth, nothing was working. The warm water, the swaying hips in the tub, the breathing, the low moans...nothing. It came down to me begging for an epidural.
An epidural that I wanted so bad despite my strong desire not to have one. Therefore, everyone talked me out of it. I recall being so pissed at them. "I am the one in pain, you assholes. I am the one that feels like my back and hips are coming out, taking my kidneys with them!"
They all just helplessly looked back at me, offering encouraging words as I slammed my sweaty forehead back down into the cold cloth. Next contraction came and from there on, with each tense minute, my husband and doula both had to take a side and push down on my hips.
This is where I wish I knew the timeline. I know not long after my epidural begging I had to be reassessed by my midwife since she was going off call. Out of the nice warm tub I went. They all waited for another contraction, told me I was close. My heart sank knowing I wasn't fully a 10 and ready to push.
My entire pregnancy I worried that my midwife wouldn't be there. Now I had her here but she was leaving for a meeting and office hours at 7:45 am. Looking at the clock it was 7:15. I was told to get up on my knees to see if it would help progress things,boy howdy did it...
There, with my large, white behind in the air on all fours, I felt pressure and "pushy". My face is buried into a pillow and each contraction is coming one right after another. I hear voices behind me. I can't see anyone. I am alone. I am pushing down. I hear voices asking me if I am pushing. Grunting, I answer.
Back to my pushing zone. Me, my body, my baby. We are doing this. I take a deep breath and push. Finally the back pain is gone. No longer am I chanting, "but it hurts so bad." In my head I know it is so close to the end. My body tells me I am about to meet my third baby.
The pain turns into relief. Pushing felt like relief. My head is in the pillow with my arms wrapped around it. My doula and my husbands voices become clear again. My husband tells me he sees an eye. ?? I regroup and visualize that last push and I push. That last push was going, I hear my midwife tell me the plan.
"Donya, I am going to pass Justin up between your legs and you are going to grab him, ok?"
Hell yes it is okay. The last push, the relief of his head being born into this world followed by the painful release of his shoulders and done. He is in my arms.
Born 7:29 am on Novemeber 2, 2011
My life and my heart will never be the same, I became Justin's mom, Mother of three and a survivor of another natural birth.
Still in my birth position, my first look at my second son.
My wonderful husband and father of *3*
My wonderful Doula, Julie
and that is my third and final birth story.