Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Abigail's Birth- NOT at Target!


This is the sister birth story from our fabulous birth story from last week.  I love this story too!  I love how it showcases how deeply important a good birth team is and how quick and beautiful a fearless birth can be.  
Enjoy! 

Abigail

I woke up at about 4 AM to Matthew squeaking in his bed (he makes funny noises when he is in that 'between sleep and awake' state). I went in to check on him and while sitting on the floor next to his bed I had my first 'real' contraction. I went to the bathroom and then got back in bed, only to get up again because I had to pee again. I had a couple more contractions in the process of all this and figured that the time had finally come (I officially hit 41 weeks that morning). I climbed in bed and was just sitting there because I was contracting again when DH woke up. I told him what had been happening and he got up to find the stopwatch so we could see how far apart they were. They were coming pretty close together - about seven minutes apart, and were just over a minute long. It was about 4:30 so we decided to give M (my midwife) a call. Because of how quickly labor with Matthew went, she decided to head our way right away (she was coming from about 45 minutes away). She called P, my other midwife, on the way. We also called my friend Leigh Anne, who is training to become a doula and who had offered to be here for any support we needed, as well as to watch Matthew. She arrived first, and not far behind was M and then P.

My contractions at this point were about 4 minutes apart and still only a minute long. They weren't too painful, but I was having some Pelvic/Hip pain during them, which was not pleasant. DH and Leigh Anne traded off providing counter-pressure during contractions, which helped immensely. M did a pelvic exam and I was dialated to a 6 between contractions and a 9 during, so we knew the baby would be here soon.
Matthew woke up at about 5:30 and was perfectly content to hang out in the living room with Leigh Anne and his toys. He would come back to the bedroom occasionally, just to see what was up, but didn't really care about staying. He did so well the entire time, and I'm so proud of him.

P suggested that if I push during my next big contraction, my water would most likely break and the baby would probably come quickly after. I followed her suggestion, and my water broke during the next one. I was in something of a supported squat position, leaning on DH's arms, and dropped to my knees right after my water broke. I leaned back on my legs and could feel the baby's head crowning. P knew it was right there and told me to reach down and touch my baby's head. With two pushes her head was born, and one more brought the rest of her. DH was there to catch her, along with M, and they placed her on my chest. My baby was finally here, and it was a girl!

I have a video of this moment that I wish all expecting or hopeful moms could see. Matthew's birth was so hectic because of it's 'location,' and this birth was so peaceful. The only sounds on the video are of some minor chatting between my midwife and husband, and the sound of my breathing. Then, as the baby crowned, there is only the sound of me breathing, and then the awe when she emerged. It was a beautiful silence. Thanks to my mom, husband, and midwives, I've really always known that birth didn't have to be full of fear and screaming like it is on TV, but I never realized it could be so peaceful and beautiful.

P draped a towel over over the baby and I and rubbed her down. She was breathing great, crying occasionally, and squirming like a madwoman. She was beautiful, with dark blue eyes and short brown hair. Despite all our efforts prior to the birth, we didn't have a name right away, but 'Baby Girl' was just fine with me for the time being - I was just happy she was here.

Within a few minutes I delivered the placenta and DH cut the cord. I moved the baby further up on my chest and she nursed a little bit right away. Matthew came in the room and DH brought him over to meet the baby. We moved to the bed to get comfortable and just hung out there for a while. I had torn a bit, so M stitched me up. My midwives cleaned the baby up and did her newborn exam. She is so strong - when M turned her over to her tummy for part of the exam, she actually lifted herself up on her hands and knees and tried to scoot away.  DH dressed her and then we all cuddled as a family.

My midwives were great, and so was Leigh Anne. Everything was cleaned up, laundry was washing, and the baby was sleeping before everyone had gone. Leigh Anne stayed for a while to entertain Matthew for a bit longer. She also made some food for us and cleaned up the kitchen. It was wonderful to have such great help. Mom flew in that night, and we were just content to hang out for a few days and relax.

Things really couldn't have gone better. Abby's birth was beautiful and empowering and all around amazing! We are thrilled that our little one finally made her appearance, and that she is a she.

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