Our first two children were born with a midwife at a local hospital. With my first, my water broke before I was in labor and, since I was group-B strep positive, I had to go in for antibiotics. When labor did finally begin about 10-12 hours later, it was slow and I was tired. Eventually, after consulting with my midwife, we decided to start Pitocin with an epidural about 32 or so hours after my water had broken. After several more hours, our first girlie was born!
With my second, we barely made it to the hospital in time! I was laboring and then my water broke, pushing me into transition almost instantly! We arrived, and my husband carried me through the hospital to the elevator and up to labor and delivery, and my midwife hadn’t even made it there yet! An off-duty OB delivered my second daughter, complete with episiotomy and stirrups, and I ended up with a level 4 (?) tear afterwards.
So, with our third pregnancy, we had moved farther away from that hospital and our midwife had retired. We knew we wanted a midwife, so that meant it was time to head to TBC. We had several friends who had delivered there, so we trusted their experiences and thought we’d investigate for ourselves.
From the start, we were sold on it! Throughout the pregnancy, they were supportive and encouraging. We had some weird results from an early ultrasound and had to wait about 10 weeks for a follow-up one, and they helped try to calm me down in the meantime. The second ultrasound showed that everything was fine, so we were on track to deliver at TBC come 40 weeks!
At 39 weeks, I was trying to finish all the projects I had left to do before the baby came. I sat down to upload several more pictures that I was trying to order before a coupon deadline wore out and, as I did so, I heard a distinct pop and then was quickly very wet! Having had my water break with both previous labors, I knew that was what had happened. But, I was not in labor yet at all. I called Dorinda and she had us come in to check on things and then sent us home to wait a bit. She told us we had 24 hours to get into active labor on our own before we would have to move things on a bit.
So, the race was on, and I was certainly nervous! This was supposed to be our first time at TBC, and I wanted to deliver there with my midwives! We paced and walked and paced and went out to dinner while friends cared for our kids. I have never been so wet before – I seriously went through every pair of maternity shorts I had! It was a pretty nasty feeling, and yet, not really any contractions.
I tried to sleep for a while, but I was making myself pretty nervous, and I really didn’t want to have to deal with our kids in the morning while trying to labor, so we called and Dorinda said we could go ahead and come in.
I think I was only about 2-3 cm dialated when we came in, so we came up with a killer routine to hopefully jumpstart things. I rocked in the rocking chair for a few minutes, then I climbed the stairs to the third floor over and over, then I sat on the ball for a while, then we began again. The last Harry Potter book had just come out, so my husband brought it and read to me, and that was probably the single best thing for me! I think I was so uptight and nervous that I was hindering labor, and the only thing that helped was getting my mind off of it for a while so it could progress on its own.
After a while, the midwives changed shifts, and Katie came in. We enjoyed talking and joking with her for a while. She eventually suggested black cohosh (?) under my tongue, which is about the nastiest thing I have every voluntarily put into my mouth, but I think it did help. And yet the clock was still ticking…
By the 24 hour mark, I was still not quite there yet, but Katie thought I was progressing enough to stay! I’m pretty sure that having that burden lifted was what really helped to get things in motion! I could finally “rest” and just let my body work. We kept up the workouts and the black cohosh, and eventually I got to the point where it was finally time to push!
This was by far the longest I have ever had to push (these darn large-headed back labor babies I tend to have!), but eventually I felt the baby emerge and then come out! What a wonderful relief! The midwives helped me to lie back on the bed and then put the baby on my chest. They, we got the surprise of a lifetime! It was a boy!! We had two girls and never even really thought it would really be a boy! I’m pretty sure our first response was to look at each other and exclaim, “What do we do with one of those?!” What a wonderful blessing!
He pooped and peed all over the changing pad and supplies when Colleen finally examined him, and my husband cheered for his boy! And then my friend brought our girls (ages 4 ½ and 3) to meet their brother, and they were enthralled! And then we got to go home! Probably the best part, after having to stay for 48 hours each time with my first two because of the group-B strep thing!
I am so thankful for the midwives and the atmosphere of support and help at TBC! I am pretty convinced that, had we not had a midwife with our first, we would have ended up with a C-section, and I think the same would have happened with our son if not for TBC!