March 12, 2020
*Disclaimer: This is my birth story! If you don’t find a liking to birth or birth stories I will tell you this is not the blog for you to read.
To start off, my birth with our first, Elijah was very difficult. You can read more about it here so I won’t say much about it. It really took me about three + years really up until birth to truly “get over” labor with him and the entire situation surrounding pregnancy. I have technically wonderful pregnancies. I’m grateful I’m not overly sick or nauseous the entire time. Besides the sometimes horrible acid reflux, most people would consider me to be lucky with how well both of my physical “pregnancies” go. Obviously, besides finding out I had cancer with my first pregnancy, the actual “pregnancy” part is what I’m talking about.
I knew that when we got pregnant with our second, I was still not mentally prepared for labor. . . but over the 10 months of pregnancy I was preparing myself the best way I possibly can mentally for the “perfect” second child labor.
Fast forward to February 24th when I had a doctor’s appointment and our sweet boy had been measuring two weeks large since around 28 weeks. So we decided that she would attempt to strip my membranes at 39 weeks to see if he’d come. I had been practicing hypnobirthing/christian hypnobirthing (which you can read more about this here!) since 25 weeks and was prepping for a completely natural birth, and didn’t want to be induced at all due to a very traumatic birth with my first son that was over 42 hours.
So, last Monday she attempted but his head wasn’t in a good position and she couldn’t strip membranes. So, we scheduled a date Thursday to do it. I went in, same thing he wasn’t low enough on cervix. I was so discouraged. I was done being pregnant and wanted my baby to be here! I said, so what are my options. She said I know you do not want to be induced but, that’s an Option we do have. It was Thursday and I said so like tomorrow? She laughed and said she’d wait for after my due date (feb 29) and then schedule for Monday. I said I’d think about it and get back to her that afternoon.
That same morning I went to my chiropractor and she said do you want my opinion? Your body is too stressed. You’re too stressed and won’t go into labor. I cried internally and was so discouraged. I said to myself and my husband – I’ll get induced. Therefore, I have a date, and maybe hopefully my body will be thrown into labor and know what to do.
I didn’t go into labor over the weekend like I’d hoped but Monday 03-02-2020 at 630, I went in and they started me on Pitocin around 9ish. I started contracting well and they weren’t painful contractions so I kept thinking goodness I need just stronger contractions. She broke my water and then left me on 2ml of pit because my body was handling it well. Listened to hypnobirthing soundtracks and fell asleep because I was absolutely so tired from being up since 3 am of like excitement and nervousness that I was going to meet my baby!
She broke my water (for the first time) around 1130. My doula, Sara Jean was amazing and she helped in so many ways helping move me around. Still not painful contractions though. Was at like a three. Dr came back in around like 3 to check on me and she went to check me to see if I had dilated after water broke and she said he had taken his head and sealed the broken part of the bag up with his head. Lol! She said that is super rare but she laughed and said he sure doesn’t want to come out. She broke my water again and said I should feel a lot more water gushes and more pressure.
When she came in a few hours later and checked me she said again as I was at a 4 1/2, he had moved his head and stopped water from coming out! What a stinker. She said I was dilating so she wasn’t going to attempt to rupture my water again. So they turned Pitocin up and then told me I really needed to get up and move around. So I got up, and things were getting a bit intense. Not bad, but just a lot more pressure. Harder contractions.
I got in the tub and started shaking so they thought I was getting close to transition. When she checked me later I was about a 6. I was SO discouraged and after being in labor for 12+ hours I felt like my body and my mind had failed me. I bought a homeopathic birth kit and an amazing lady in the group helped my doula (which shout out to the best doula ever Sara Jean!!!! I would not have had the birth I wanted without her help and support and I’m Forever thankful for her!!!!)
But after shedding so many tears I told them I wanted to see my four-year-old, Elijah to refocus and hug the best boy I’ve ever had and remember why I’m going through this. This made my labor just switch completely. He came in and just hugged me and kissed me. The sweetest. He prayed for me and his baby brother and everyone in the room was in tears. I said, let’s kick this into high gear. The homeopathic birth kit had so many remedies to get my mind refocused on labor and getting over this hump. I got in the bath again and labored in there a while and then when things started getting more intense I went and did so many other positions trying to move the baby down. I told them to get a dose of Nubain (one hour pain medicine) ready. When she brought it back I said – no I’ve got this. I don’t want it. I can do this. (Help of my doula and her helping my mindset of what I really wanted in the birth and could do this without pain meds!)
The doctor checked me when I was at a 6 and within around 30 minutes I felt the need to push. I was yelling at them to get the doctor and the nurse kept saying, you’re fine. I was begging for pain medicine and she said I was too far along and she didn’t feel comfortable with me being at an 8 the doctor is on the way. She didn’t want me to push and I was shaking SO so bad. I was sobbing and trying to refocus and it was HARD. My hypnobirthing was playing in the background and I did have an insanely amazing birth team but I’m not going to lie, at that point, it did not help me. Nothing did except getting that baby out. I really actually dreamed of pushing the baby out on hands and knees or squatting. She was checking me before I pushed and she said I could get up but physically I couldn’t. I was on my side and my doula held up my leg. They kept saying not to, but every surge I had, I pushed HARD. They didn’t want me to push but I didn’t listen. I was pushing anyways (come to find out his cord was wrapped around his neck and he was sunny side up) within seconds of my pushing though obviously my body and intuition knew it was okay because within seconds of a contraction he flipped his way over and started easing out and came out she looped the cord and he came out crying loudly and in less than 5 contractions/ pushes. I pushed for 1 hour last time with my son with an epidural.
I SOBBED at the end because I did it. I had my natural birth despite being on Pitocin for over 12 hours, with absolutely NO PAIN MEDICINE. Which I never thought I Could actually do. I’m loving holding this sweet 9. 10 lbs baby in my arms and he’s just doing SO wonderful and big brother truly adores him. We are SO thankful he’s here with us and that I’m not pregnant anymore haha!
Another really amazing thing is that we were in the same hospital room, with the same doctor and the SAME nurses that we had for Elijah’s birth, four years ago! It was simply amazing.
Also, if you ever considered hiring a doula do it. It’s worth every. Single. Penny. SO worth it. Mine was literally making sure we were all taken care of, making sure Tyler was eating and that I was comfortable. She helped ensure I was hydrated and she kept my mind towards the goal and she was the best. ❤️
I didn’t have a birth photographer, BUT my husband got the camera and my doula took some photos right after and I’m so so thankful! Also Carter’s newborn photos at the end, were in my in-home studio! 🙂
follow along @ASHLEASNELLPHOTOGRAPHY