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 A Birth Story 

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 We had had three boys first, so when we found out we were having a girl I think I seriously went into shock. It was really exciting to think of finally having a girl! She is now already five months old. So with spring here and her growing fast, I'd like to share her birth story.

A little background, this was my fourth child. My first two births I had the epidural without a second thought. My third baby threw us for a loop. I started contractions in the morning and when I got to the hospital I was already eight cm dilated! It was a crazy experience as I had not prepared to labor naturally. So this fourth time I wanted to be prepared, educated, and ready.  

 I wanted to deliver naturally for the experience. I had talked to so many other mothers who had experienced a beautiful birth without medication. My husband and I discussed this option. I started reading books. I had my birthing plan and ideas to help my husband who wanted to be my coach. We practiced breathing rhythms and birthing positions. I thought I was ready this time. 

I was running a few errands in the mid afternoon a couple days before my due date when they started. At first the contractions were similar to Braxton Hicks. I was so excited that contractions were starting that I walked every moment I could. By the evening the intensity rose. My husband and I sat on our couch watching our shows while tracking each contraction. They were between 10-20 min apart. By the last show my contractions had dipped under 10 minutes. I got excited.

Around 11 pm we called my sister-in-law over. We had asked her to hold down the fort while we were in the hospital. Contractions were getting close to five minutes. Finally progression. I then hopped into the shower to rinse off before going in to the hospital. When I got out I started tracking my contractions again. They had slowed to the 10-20 minute pace. I felt discouraged but decided this meant I might be able to get some sleep.

I laid down around midnight only to wake up one hour later with painful contractions. I tossed back in forth in bed for I'm not sure how long. It was torture at this point to lay in bed. I would start drifting off only to be woken up in pain. Finally I got up. I went to my basement and started cleaning.  

Around five in the morning or so my husband and sister-in-law woke up. Even though my contractions were not a consistent five minutes apart they were starting to get a bit more painful. We decided we should go in and when we got to the hospital around six am, I had not progressed! The nurses monitored me for an hour. They saw I was having consistent strong contractions, but not enough to qualify for labor. They did assure me that I was in early labor and I would be back by the evening. 

We went home and watched a movie. I bounced on my birthing ball pausing with each contraction. They were starting to get pretty painful. I was able to lay down in the late morning and sleep for an hour. After lunch we decided we should walk. We walked around the whole neighborhood. One of neighbors saw us walking and joined us. 

We got home and back to the birthing ball I went. For me it was really comfortable. My contractions were still only seven minutes apart. My mom called and I expressed my exhausted frustrations with her! Why was it taking so long this time!? I started really having to work through each contraction. It was about the time that I almost started crying my husband insisted we should go in. So we loaded up again this time around four in the afternoon. The pain was equivalent to when I was at an eight with my third. Why weren't the contractions closer?

I had discussed my plan to deliver naturally with many other people beforehand. And one of my friends who had delivered naturally offered her help during labor if I needed it. I called this friend on the way to the hospital. And I just cried. I wasn't crying because of the contractions but because of the experience. I had hardly any sleep and contractions for over 24 hours. I was frustrated that the labor was going so slow. She was such a huge support at this moment. She assured me that I had done everything right. I was strong. I had tried and if in the end I ended up with the epidural it did not mean I was a failure.

Emotionally I was reinvigorated but my physical appearance must have resembled a ghost with crazy hair and droopy eyes. They monitored me and found I was almost five cm dilated and in active labor! Luckily the hospital I was delivering at had one hot tub room. I knew the hot tub would help. My husband unpacked some music, granola bars, as well as our oil diffuser. I slipped into the tub and into periodic bliss. My countenance changed. I felt renewed and ready to do this! I still had to breath with each contraction and they were the most pain I have ever felt. But the hot water helped a ton. In between contractions I smiled and talked with my husband. The nurses commented on my improvement. I felt hopeful.

While in the hot tub I did start to progress faster. Every half an hour I was dilating a centimeter. By seven at night though the contractions still weren't under five minutes apart. And I was not dilating anymore. I was seven cm dilated now. I told the nurses I'd like to wait another hour to see what would happen.

It was pretty discouraging around eight pm when the nurse informed us that I was still a seven. My husband and I talked over the options. We prayed. Though the tub felt great the contractions felt pretty darn painful to say the least and were still not under five minutes apart.

I decided to get the epidural. The nurse and my husband helped me out of the tub. My body shook. I no longer had the warm tub and my body knew it. Each contraction seemed to drain the life out of me. The epidural could not come fast enough. But when it did, it felt like Christmas. After the pain was taken away I suddenly realized how exhausted my body truly was. It's crazy to think I was in so much pain that I didn't feel the exhaustion that had overcome my body. I was instantly grateful I had chosen to get the epidural. Even with the epidural the contractions did not speed up. So they added Pitocin. Even with the Pitocin I did not get ready to push until 10 pm! I cannot imagine how long it would have taken if I hadn't been on Pitocin.

When it was time to push they found my baby was posterior. Meaning she was facing with her spine against mine. I found out later this may have been a factor to the awful labor. She was flipped and in a couple pushes we finally had our baby girl! I am really glad I had got the epidural in the end. I told my husband afterward that I think I would have died if I had been in the pioneer days. Oh Boy!

 This story wasn't meant to scare anyone from doing natural labor. I really think it can be an amazing experience. But from this experience I learned how strong I really am. I can legitimately tell my daughter, "I was in labor for over 30 hours with you!". It also taught me that when it comes to pregnancy and labor, you cannot always predict the experience. So even though this happened to me, it doesn't mean it will happen to you. Or that it will even be the same for me next time. But that's life right? You can't control everything or hardly anything really. I'm just glad in the end to have had a healthy baby and delivery. And now I get to drive you all crazy with pictures of my baby girl. Haha! She was definitely worth it.

 

4 comments

  1. Yours is a beautiful story. Thank you for sharing!

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  2. Thanks Rebecca! It has been a good learning experience for me. - Natashia

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  3. Beautiful story, Natashia! I agree, no reason to feel like a failure. Back labor is very hard! Now you have a beautiful little girl to dress up and enjoy!

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  4. Thankyou Trickfam! This was hard thing for me to stomach but I have no regrets now and know I did the best choice for me.

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