(I haven’t forgotten about the give away. I should have the winner announced in a day or so!)
I hadn’t had a birth since June of ‘08. For a lot of different reasons. Lots of family trips, DH was SO busy working and the June birth was an emergency cesarean at 34 weeks and frankly hit a little too close to home. I still continued to teach Hypnobabies, but would refer students to my fellow doulas.
I was so excited when Sierra wanted me as her doula. I got back from a trip the day before she turned 37 weeks. She was cool with that. I had Cindy on call in case she had her baby before I came home. It was a little hard to get used to being on call again, but totally worth it. I did get REALLY sick one weekend and had Cindy be on call for me for a day or so. I knew that Sierra’s birth would be fast, so I kept all my friends on alert, in case I needed them at a moments notice.
Tuesday night Sierra called and said that nothing much was happening, though the midwife had stripped her membranes that day. I actually knew that my 2 main people were not available to watch my boys Wed morning and I was in charge of Jenn’s son that morning too. So I was glad nothing was happening. I went to bed happy.
I got a call from Adam at 6 AM Wednesday morning saying Sierra was having pressure waves every 5 minutes. I said I would hop in the shower and be there soon. I panicked a bit in the shower, who was going to have my boys? Then Rob said he had an IMPORTANT phone call at 9 am. I made a list of people for him to call, called Jenn to say I couldn’t take L. and ran out the door, with a quick “Good Luck!” and kiss for Rob.
I got to Sierra’s by 6:40. Adam was surprised I was there that quick. Sierra was just getting out of the shower. I got out my notebook and knee pad and she came down and started getting breakfast ready for the kids. She would pause every 5 minutes or so and have a pressure wave. I would do the relax cue and say some mini scripts. We turned on the Birthing Day affirmations. I got the birth ball and made her sit down and stop getting breakfast ready. She went to the bathroom around 7:12. I could sense she needed to get a little more focused to stay relaxed so we headed upstairs around 7:20. Her sister Jen had arrived and was helping Adam with the kids. Sierra was telling Jen she needed to bring the dogs in to get groomed.
Sierra got settled on the bed and we put in the East First Stage script and I figured out how the cameras worked and would do the relax cue when she had a pressure wave. I could tell because she would moan softly through them. She was staying nice and relaxed. I could hear Jen getting directions to the groomers from Adam and I ran downstairs between pressure waves and said, “Don’t go now. This baby will be here within 2 hours!” I wanted to be sure there was someone to be with the kids. J
7:50 her friend Karrie arrived. She is an OB/GYN from Northern California, but happened to be down visiting and was so excited to be at Sierra’s homebirth. In fact when Sierra wanted to do a home birth, her mom asked, “What does Karrie think?” Sierra was able to say, “She thinks I am a great candidate!”
8:00 Sierra goes to the bathroom and we start running water into the tub. She was so excited to get into the tub.
8:10 Angela arrives, Sierra tears up and is just so happy. Angela listens to the baby, who sounds great. She uses a cup to drip water on her back while she has a pressure wave and Sierra LOVES that. I do the relax cue and say scripts and Karrie takes over water duty and later pushes on her lower back. We made a good team. Sierra doing all the work, but Karrie and I helping out during her pressure waves.
Sierra’s mom arrives around 8:30 and she comes up and says, “How are you doing? Are you having pain?” Sierra looks surprised and shocked at the word. “No,” she hesitatingly answers and looks at me questioningly, “I am feeling a lot of pressure!” I reassure her, “Yes, just pressure.” I asked Sierra about this later and she says that it was true. She was just having a lot of pressure, it was getting more intense at that point, but no pain. At one point when Sierra was resting between pressure waves (which seemed to be coming every 3-4 minutes) she asked, “Do you really think I will have the baby today?” She still wasn’t sure it was really her birthing time!
Not long after things change a bit, she starts making pushy noises at the top of her pressure waves and they get closer together. Karrie and I smile at each other knowingly. I tell Sierra betweens pressure waves that she is doing great and I think the baby will be here within and hour. She still doesn’t really believe me.
9:00 Angela comes in to check on the baby. Sierra asks if she should get checked. Angela says OK. So she checks her with Sierra still in the tub. She is 9 cm. Sierra is shocked, “REALLY? Are you lying to me?” Angela reassures her she is 9cm and doing great. Sierra says, “I am really having the baby TODAY?” It is almost as if she still doesn’t believe it is her birthing time.
Things pick up and Sierra wants Adam in the tub pushing on her back during pressure waves. Around 9:15 she decides she wants to get out of the tub. She wants to get in the shower to rinse off. “Your baby will be born in the shower if you get in now.” Angela tells her. So we help rinse her off in the tub. Which is a challenge - first the water is too hot and then it is too cold.
Sierra is starting to get pushy while standing in the tub and seems incredulous that she needs to climb out of the tub. It is as daunting as climbing Mount Everest. She finally climbs with both feet up onto the edge of the tub and then she is stuck there. There are 4 of us supporting her, but I was really hoping she didn’t have a pressure wave while high centered on the edge of the tub. She finally steps down and we help get her to the bedroom.
9:25 Sierra arrives in the bedroom. She drops on the floor next to the bed for a pressure wave and starts to push. Then she climbs up onto the bed and is on all fours and starts to really push. Her water breaks on the bed. She is ready for the baby to come out. She keeps asking “When will the baby be out?”
Someone goes to get her kids and then with the next push the baby’s head is out. Angela has Adam come around so he can catch the baby. He seems surprised that it is time already. Then suddenly the baby is out. Just like that the baby is born. It is somewhere around 9:35.
Someone asks, “What is it?” Adam checks and announces, “It is a boy!” Aidan said, “I wanted a girl…. Next time it will be a girl.”
Sierra lays down on the bed and holds her sweet baby boy. Oliver was 7 pounds 10 ounces. Her birth really went like she had visualized, only a bit faster. Sierra was a little stunned that the baby was actually here!
About an hour after the baby was born, Aidan asked, “Mommy, you aren’t pregnant anymore?” Sierra confirmed that it was true. Aidan was overcome with JOY and ran through the house shouting, “Mommy isn’t pregnant anymore!!!!! Mommy isn’t pregnant anymore!!!!” Apparently Sierra had not been able to do quite a few fun things the last few weeks and he was so excited to get his mom back!
When I got home Rob was on the phone. I tried to ask him where the boys were, but he was too involved to even tell me that. So I started calling people on my list and asking if they had my boys. I finally found them at Jenny’s. Jenn had called Jenny to see if she could watch L. and explained the situation. Jenny called Rob and offered to take my boys! I have the best friends!!!!
It was a wonderful birth and I love how things always work out with my family when I am called away!