My first born son, Brycen Anthony, arrived at 38.5 weeks, weighing in at 9.4. My second son, Calvin Angelo, arrived at 39.2 weeks, weighing 9.2. So thinking “logically” my third would arrive around that time frame in pregnancy. An assumption I would learn to regret…
At 39.3 weeks, Friday February 27th, I emailed the midwife in desperation to get this baby out of me and asked of her something I thought I would never consider: strip my membranes. At this point, my pelvic pain was so painful, it was robbing my family and my life. My midwife called and said she would do it, but once I was given the option to go forward with my plan, I got scared and chose not to.
March 2nd, 39.6 weeks pregnant: almost sounds like a jail sentence waiting to be over. We celebrated my second’s son’s second birthday, and I wondered if she too would welcome us on this day. She did not.
March 3rd, 40 weeks: My husband and I went to our midwife appointment, where I again wanted my membranes swept. We had the midwife check my cervix and when she could not sweep because I wasn’t dilated, I was relieved that baby had decided her fate. That night I went to Marina Jack’s and sat on a swing and stared at the almost full moon and said out loud to whoever was listening that I was giving into their plan.
March 4th: I went to Sarasota Family Chiropractic to see Melissa so she could adjust me. She was the only reason I got by at the end, she helped ease my pelvic and lower back pain. I couldn’t recommend a better chiropractor. We talked about how March 5th was the full moon and how we both thought that maybe she would grace us earth side this day, but I, in my mind, doubted it. Later that day at 4:45pm while driving the family around, I had what I thought was a contraction but I laughed it off because again I had doubts. I had 3 more by the time we got home. I decided I would go to bed when the boys did at 7pm, just in case she wanted to come in the middle of the night.
At 10:30pm I woke up with more contractions that would last for the rest of the night, but I noticed my husband was still awake so I texted him to go to bed. I didn’t tell him I was having contractions because I knew if I did, he wouldn’t have been able to sleep. For weeks I had asked my oldest son when his sister would come and his reply was always 100. Now, I know that he was telling me a time in which I would know baby was on her way for sure.
At 1:00am, on the dot, March 5th, I woke up with stronger contractions. I went to the bathroom when I found I lost my plug. I then grabbed pen and paper to write down each contraction, while I watched some Spartacus. My contractions started getting closer together fast so once they got 10 minutes apart I paged the midwife. Jessica, one of the wonderful midwives at Rosemary Birthing Home, called me back. She told me to at least lie back in bed and rest through each contraction. So I did. The boys woke up around 6:30am when I also woke Frank up to let him know today’s the day.
At 8:13am, we went for a car ride so we could all get fresh air and breakfast. Once we got home at 8:55am, I had an intense contraction in the driveway, but after that I had a mental block and contractions stopped. I went into my room, curtains closed, sitting on my birth ball, listening and singing a beautiful song by Leah West, “Guardian Angel,” to my daughter, to tell her it’s okay to come. I cried ugly, passionate tears to her while singing to her, but nothing happened. I finally went into the living room and vented to my husband that maybe she wasn’t going to come today. I grabbed my pen and paper and I wrote a message to her. It said, “Dear baby, COME OUT!” Thirty seconds later, at 10:22am, I had another contraction. I never thought I would be so excited to have one. I then went back into my room to relax and read her a book. I read her “On the Night You Were Born.” It was a pretty perfect book that I hadn’t seen in months that so happened to be on my bedroom floor. It’s about the only time I appreciated my children leaving random things lying around in places they shouldn’t be.
At around 12pm, contractions started picking up and getting more intense. I called my midwife and she asked me questions and decided that she needed to talk to my husband and tell him to keep track of how long my contractions were start to finish for 30 minutes. He called back and though they were about 5-7 minutes apart, they didn’t last very long. So she told him that they would be leaving the Birth Center at 3pm after their last appointment, unless anything changed. I was standing in my room looking at my beautiful collage that I made for Rose’s birth when the very first intense contraction happened. I tried to scream for Frank to help me but the pain was so intense that I could only get a whisper out. I felt helpless, no strength to move, yell or drop to the floor. I just held onto the wall to get me through it. Once it stopped I cried out for Frank, “help me!” He helped me to the bed. The contractions knocked me off my feet, standing was now too much for me to do.
By now it was around 2pm. Frank was studying me and he knew something I didn’t, baby was going to arrive before the midwives came if they left at 3. He grabbed my phone and called, they asked to speak with me and I’m sure some very inappropriate words came out towards my husband, to which they replied, “On the way!” Once I knew they were on their way, a panic inside me went off. “This is real, baby is coming, soon!” After some time passed, I remember yelling out to Frank like he did something wrong, “WHERE ARE THEY?!” Moments later Jessica and Anna walked in getting everything ready and checking on me. It was 3pm, which I found out later that’s when they arrived. The end was near but all the same words cried out of my mouth, “Make it stop, please, please make it stop.” With tears flowing down my face. Then back labor decided to show up, something I’ve never experienced with my other labors. “My back hurts.” Jessica pressed her hands on my lower back to help the pain, but it wasn’t enough, so I pushed my hands on top of hers to force more pressure on my back. Sorry, Jessica, pain is not something I tolerate well. Yes, that is my formal apology.
I felt the urge to push, so I started to push but nothing was happening. Panic started happening, my thoughts started fighting with me. I asked if they would please break my water, a request I never thought I would ask but I knew it had to be done. So they did. The urge became stronger and nothing! Why??? I laid on my side every other time and birthed my children just fine. It wasn’t happening. I looked for answers, I begged for answers. “What can I do, tell me something, please!” With my second, once his water broke and he flew out, I actually recall putting my hand on his head to slow him down for fear of tearing. So when my water was broken and the same feeling came but she wasn’t coming I was concerned. “Hands and knees.” I opened my eyes, “I can’t move!” I fought with myself and started to change my position. As I was moving the birth photographer walked in. I got on hands and knees and I felt my baby coming with ease. I heard someone say there’s a hand by her face, my daughter was reaching out to me, so she quickly swiped her hand out and she was born. Before she was completely out, she screamed! At 4:04pm, she was born. YESSSSS!!!!! She is here!
My boys ran in the room. Bry, my 3.5 year old, was all happy wanting to hold her. While Cal, who just turned two said, “eww!” After things settled down, my midwife drew me an herbal bath while Frank bonded with Rose in the backyard with the boys. Before the midwives could leave, I needed to eat so Anna made me a bowl of fruit and heated some pasta. I was so drained that Anna actually spoonfed me while I held Rose. Talk about going above and beyond! Anna, thank you for that! They cleaned some of my laundry and left. Frank put the boys to bed at 7pm. Rose and I went to sleep at 10pm where she slept next to me the whole night and only woke to nurse. Perfection!