My Bath Baby

Indie Bay Dobson was born at 7:20 am on 04/12/11 (40 weeks + 6). A beautiful 7lb 15oz (way bigger than my midwife had anticipated) in my tub at home! 9 hours of established labour. 5-10 minutes of second stage pushing. At about 11:00pm we noticed that the contractions started picking up. I can’t actually remember what happened, but they started coming every 3-4 minutes. I lost a slightly brown mucous plug. I put on my Hypnobirthing Tracks and at 12:45pm my partner called the midwife. She headed over and checked me at 1:15 or 1:30 – 100% effaced and only 3cm dilated.

I felt like I had been in labour forever. The surges were felt mostly in my lower back and my legs. I didn’t know this, but she told my partner that average dilation is 1cm per hour, so she would head home to sleep and wait to hear from us at 10:00ish. Over the next few hours, the contractions started coming back to back. I completely relied on having a hot water bottle on my back or being in the shower to ease the tension. We were so exhausted we slept for a minute between each contraction. Haha. Over the next three trips to the toilet I lost bloody masses of mucous plug. I was able to manage through each of the contractions with breathing – but it was getting more and more difficult. My partner rang my midwife again at 3 or 4ish and she asked him to check my cervix under her instruction. He said he could feel the head, but he wasn’t sure how dilated I was. He guessed it was 5 or so cm. I started thinking in my head “holy crap, how many hours can I do this for…”. The contractions continued to increase in intensity, and I joked with my partner at one point about giving up and getting drugs. But we both knew there was no way I was giving up. By about 5am I felt the urge to push. My partner had been told to tell me not to push, that it was too early and that I should force myself not to. He checked my cervix and was really confused about what he was feeling – said he had no idea, but that the midwife didn’t want to hear from us until it was time – which he would assume would be closer to 10:00am.

I was in so much pain – I was swearing and moaning like nothing. Haha – I had hoped for one of those beautiful painless births. It broke his heart to see me in so much agony and he was resisting being annoying and calling the midwife again in the middle of the night. I tried all fours, I tried the shower, I tried being on my birth ball, I tried leaning over standing. Nothing made it remotely manageable. I could not stop myself from pushing. I tried relaxing and breathing through the urges. But it just made the next contraction ten times more impossible to stop the urge. And once I pushed, the pain in my back was completely disabling. He checked me again an hour later and said he felt my bag of waters ahead of baby’s head. Finally, he called the midwife at about 6:30 and told her that I was in so much pain and finding it impossible not to push. That he felt my cervix and could only feel the bag of waters. She arrived at about 7:00am, checked me, and said “Well, how about that – you don’t need to stop yourself pushing!” I was soooo ecstatic – despite the fact that I was probably fully dilated hours earlier. It still hurt like crazy to go with the urge of pushing but once I got into the tub, it took me about 5 or 6 pushes to slide her out and I checked to find out we had had a beautiful baby girl! It was such a relief to be “allowed” to push, and a part of me is so glad that I now know I could have trusted my body’s urges. She is absolutely gorgeous with a beautiful head of hair. Turns out she was delivered LOA – and had been positioned ROA/ROL most of the last few weeks. So, throughout the morning she had likely rotated through the posterior positions before coming out LOA. Next labour – hopefully much shorter!

Am so stoked to have my girl and everyone is absolutely smitten. She took to the boob like a champ and I did not have any tearing! More than anything – so stoked to have had a NUCB home water birth that my mum (who had not intended on attending the birth due to her being anti-home birth) observed and was highly impressed with what she witnessed. Would not have done it any other way.