asphodellium

Posts Tagged ‘labour & delivery

(For Ashelyn’s birth story, go here.)

Thursday morning, sometime after 9AM. Kevin is preparing to leave for an appointment when I tell him I’ve had a few contractions. I can’t say for sure that it’s labour, but given the circumstances of my first birth – an emergency unattended homebirth – we alert the midwife.

She suggests a warm bath, which slows the contractions but doesn’t stop them. I feel them the same way I did with my first: a low frontal burn, not particularly acute. We call my parents, who come to pick up Ashelyn for the day, and arrange to meet our midwife at the hospital.

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It’s a little past noon when we arrive. Kerry checks me: 4cm dilated and, she says, “quite thinned out.” Contractions are roughly 5 minutes apart and 30 seconds long, but don’t bother me too much, so Kevin and I are instructed to go for a walk.

We wander around the hospital for an hour or so and return reporting some progress, but nothing remarkable. I’m still at 4cm. We get a curtained-off unit in the assessment area. It was quiet earlier, but now more labouring mothers are arriving, many of them making much more of a racket than I am. The wait for a room is long.

At 3:30PM, I feel a sudden pop, like a water balloon or a giant baby hiccup. Then a gush. “Oh,” I tell Kevin (who was dozing off on the assessment bed), “my water broke.”

Up until now, contractions had been well within the realm of manageable. My midwife kept asking if I felt any pressure, and I hadn’t. Neither had I felt like making odd noises. But the first contraction after my water breaking doubles me over, and there it is all at once: pressure and the urge to push. Plus the involuntary growly noises I remember making at Ashelyn’s birth.

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They usher us to the nearest labour & delivery room, thankfully just around the corner. I don’t, however, make it onto the bed before the next contraction hits. I feel a burning “ring of fire” but higher up, in the area of the cervix. I feel baby’s head moving down … and out.

The body slides out with the third contraction, and then the nurses are heaping warm towels – heavenly! – over the two of us. “I feel better now,” I say unnecessarily.

“I’ll bet you do,” one nurse grins.

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Jariel Jayden, born February 12 at 3:43PM. 7lbs 4oz at 38w4d, he’s almost a full pound heavier than his sister was – although both burst forth in the same kind of hurry.

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