I had a home birth.
An intentional home birth.
How did this come about? Well, for those of you who know my history, I don't labor for very long.
One to two hours. You can look back to 2010 and read Travis' birth story and how anxious I was about having to get to a hospital on time, having the kids taken care of, having Mike home when he works an hour away etc. It ended up all working out with a healthy baby..but really, I didn't want to go that route again. I read up about home birthing a bit after Travis was born and decided if we ever were blessed with another one, that was what we should do.
I'm glad we did. It was a great experience as compared with a hospital birth.
Mike kept saying, "Why didn't we do this sooner?" We were in the comfort of our own home, didn't have to worry about getting the kids somewhere or having someone come get them, didn't have to worry about driving to the hospital or delivering a baby in the car..I could sleep in my own bed and shower in my own shower. My baby was not taken away from me--at all.
Some perks of hospital birthing? You don't have to worry about meals, the hospital bed sits up with a push of a button, and there is medical equipment/attention at your fingertips if necessary. That is about it. Of course, the midwives are all certified and come equipped with certain medical equipment (including oxygen) for emergencies and 911 is an option, but there is a certain "risk" involved in home birth.
We are very, very grateful to God that everything went well and we did not need any medical intervention for either myself or for Jared.
So, Thursday, November 15th, was pretty much like any other Thursday.
We did our thing during the day. Mike was planning on coming home early so we could all go to the "end of soccer pizza party and awards" and then I had an appointment with the midwives.
We ate our pizza and headed over the office.
One of the midwives came out and asked, "So, when are you going to have this baby?"
My response? "Tonight."
After hemming and hawing over having an exam, I said okay for Mike's peace of mind.
I was 2-3 cm at that point. It was around 7:15pm-ish.
From there we went to pick up some groceries I had placed an order for.
Mike dropped me off at the A&P and I got a couple of things there and headed home.
The kids were sleeping.
Carried up groceries and put them away..it was about 9:30 ish then. After that, I did some vacuuming, light dusting, and cleaned up the playroom..feeling achy..but that was nothing new.
Around 11pm, we went to bed.
Well, I laid down very uncomfortably...for about 5 minutes.
Chalk it up to all the busy-ness of the day, right?
I called the midwives at 11:20pm and said it was probably going to be tonight.
(I would really dislike being a false alarm)
I wasn't having regular contractions, but a lot of pressure and back pain and I just knew something was going on. I had given Mike the heads up--probably time to start setting up the tub and other paraphernalia..just in case. We had to move our coffee table and recliner to have the tub fit in the living room. A few minutes later, I told him--FILL IT! He ended up calling the midwife back and saying yeah, hurry up..the baby is coming!
As you can see, it is a decent sized tub.
We ran out of hot water while attempting to fill it. Mike started heating water on the stove..and it wasn't even halfway full when I got in..but it worked!
I was laboring in the bathroom, half standing, half squatting, leaning over a chair..I have no idea what time it was, but Mike says that the midwife and her assistant arrived about 12:15am or so..I had already had the urge to push one or two times. They arrived and helped me make my way into the living room and tub. The hot water was nice and in a few short minutes..at 12:28am, Jared Arthur arrived. So the midwife got here just in the nick of time! His labor and delivery took a total of an hour and a half. The second midwife (there are typically 2 midwives and an assistant present for a birth) arrived after I was already out of the tub.
These pictures are from probably an hour or so after birth.
I sat in the tub with him for a little while.
He was a hearty 10lbs 2 oz...actually he was probably more--because he did a ginormous poop (on me!) after we got out of the tub but before he was weighed.
Mike weighing Jared.
He looked great..pink and round.
The midwives were joking that in movies they will use an older baby and put slime on them and pass them off as newborns..well, that is what Jared looked like--but he really IS a newborn!
The midwives stayed until 3am and then we settled down for the night in the living room.
It was the warmest room in the house and as I'm sure you are aware, we had to monitor Jared's temperature. Mike had the woodstove CRANKING hot..so that everyone except Jared and myself were uncomfortably hot. It was necessary for the baby though.
Clean-up was relatively quick since EVERYTHING was in the tub and it could just be drained.
By the way, the tub was on loan from the midwives, but there was a liner in it that we purchased and after use threw out.
Of course, Travis was the first one up BEFORE 6am!!! Hows that for a good night's rest?! :p Michael was right on his heels..and they found a new brother waiting for them. Pretty cool early morning present, huh? Yes, the kids slept right through it all. Not a peep was heard out of them.
These are just pictures off of Mike's phone.
Obviously, I did not take any pictures--but the midwife's assistant did.
You'll have another post sometime soon with more.