I've been meaning to write up Miller's birth story for his baby book, but haven't gotten around to it and since I know some people love reading birth stories (at least I do) I figured I would just write it here!
When I was pregnant with Navy, I knew I wanted a natural birth, but I wasn't quite comfortable with a home birth and there weren't any midwives allowed in our nearby hospitals (or covered on my insurance! 🙄). This time around I KNEW I wanted a home birth and lucky for me, Washington is very homebirth friendly!
Anyway.. on to the good part 😂
I went to bed April 14th being 2 days overdue and pretty bummed about it. I remember Justin coming to bed around midnight and cuddling me (which never happens) and I immediately had a strong contraction (oxytocin, people!!). I had one or two more before we both fell asleep. I woke up again around 4am with more strong contractions. I only had a few before I could no longer lay down during them. I sat up in bed through a few and then woke Justin around 6 to tell him this was the real deal. We were so excited! The contractions were 3-5 minutes apart from the very beginning which made me a little nervous so we went ahead and called my midwife and doula and had them head over while I put on a comfy nightgown and some makeup (LOL). My grandma was staying with us so she cooked breakfast while I worked through contractions. My midwives arrived around 8 or 9am and we all hung out around the kitchen island for a while and had breakfast while the birth tub was setup. During contractions I would just stop mid sentence, lean on whatever was nearby, and just empty my mind to nothing but my breathing. With Navy I studied hypnobabies and I used a lot of the same techniques this time around.
At one point my midwife mentioned how she could feel the energy shift with every contraction. It was like time stopped for 30-60 seconds and then we just picked our conversation right back up. It also happened to be my birthday that day, so my phone was abnormally active ("happy birthday! Any baby?"). At some point I went upstairs to checkout the tub. I wanted to wait as long as I could before I got in so that I could really appreciate the comfort. I labored on my yoga ball for a bit and decided I wanted them to check my cervix. When she did, I was only 4cm, but there was some scar tissue that she massaged during the next contraction and I instantly opened to a 6.
I have no sense of time at this point so I can't tell you where we are in the timeline now. My guess would be around noon. Now is when I got into the tub and I stayed there for the rest of my labor. Up to this point my water was still intact and I hadn't noticed much a change in intensity of contractions. At some point an edible arrangement was delivered from my brother and SIL and it may have been the best thing I'd ever tasted 😂
For a while, I leaned over the edge of the tub and surfed Instagram between contractions. Oh! I forgot to mention that navy swam around in the tub with her bath toys for a while haha! Once things started to intensify, I sent navy to watch cartoons and made Justin get in the tub with me. After a while I started to feel a lot of pain and pressure in my back (the WORST 😩). In my mind I felt as though I was yelling during contractions, but later everyone told me I was still really quiet! I started to feel shaky and nauseous between contractions so I knew I was in transition! Surprisingly, I still had 3 minutes between contractions at this point (usually they begin coming on top of each other during transition). I started to doze off between contractions, but it was very intense during them! I started changing positions with every contraction and I think that was because he had to corkscrew his way out (considering the amount of back labor I was having, I was surprised when he came out perfectly anterior). Right around the peak of intensity was when I first felt the urge to push. With Navy, pushing was such a relief (and quick!), but this time it was a LOT of pressure, crying, and moaning.
The rest is something I haven't really shared with many people.
When Miller came out he had the cord wrapped around his neck a few times and it was pretty tight. With only his head emerged, my midwife (student midwife actually) tried to unwrap the cord, but it was too tight. Once I pushed out the rest of his body, they were able to spin him around (under water) and get it all unwrapped. But when we pulled him up out of the water he was purple and limp and wasn't taking a breath. We all started to rub him and talk to him to kind of give him a little jolt. Meanwhile they went ahead and cut the cord (which I now realize was so that they could take him to resuscitate). It was probably only 10 seconds but it felt like an eternity before he finally let out a cry! They put him on my chest and voilà, we were all in love.
Once we all got cleaned up, we got into bed, popped some champange and toasted to our birthdays and a perfect baby boy!💙