Preterm Birth

September 12th, 2013

34 weeks and 6 days gestation

Mid morning I am at a friends place watching her 2 year old son along with my 2 year old son.

I've had about 3 weeks of issues with not being able to pee, so am constantly peeing myself. What fun pregnancy can be and wearing adult diapers. I kept going to the bathroom to relieve myself as best I could, constantly and had a bit more discomfort today and didn't think much of it. I thought maybe I have a urinary tract infection.

Around noon I went home with my son and the drive was a bit uncomfortable due to the mentioned issues. At home I put my son to sleep. He still nurses to sleep and that made the process difficult because when you are uncomfortable with contractions you need to keep still to get your child to sleep. During his nap I was attempting to fold laundry. I had been super "nesting crazy" the past week that I had everyone's winter clothes washed. Including all the cloth that was to go back on the baby carseat and baby clothes. The past week I went nuts and rearranged an extra room and was doing all sorts with my storage room.

3:30PM I text Addie (my great friend and unofficial doula in training, since she's been to many friends births) My exact text to her "Assuming it's nothing but my contractions are getting closer together. About 8 an hour. Less than 30 seconds not getting more painful. Not telling Heidi. Ignore, ignore, ignore right! This sucks!" I remember I was low balling and was really having more like 10 + contractions an hour. I should mention Heidi was also Addie's midwife for 2 of her pregnancy's, so she knew Heidi's protocol. Of course Addie replied saying to ignore contractions and tell Heidi just in case. I didn't. I didn't want to be the annoying client of Heidi's who bugged her about everything especially since I have never had braxton hicks before and was only 34.6 gestation and I bugged her enough about my peeing issue (I was convinced it was a leak in my water bags)

5:00PM my husband is home and he didn't know how bad the contractions were. I only texted him to be home as soon as able so I can get into the tub to slow down these annoying braxton hicks contractions. After 10 min in the tub and little to none help in slowing contractions I dialed Heidi and handed the phone to Eli, my husband as I breathed through another contraction. About every 4 minutes or more at this point. Heidi promptly told me to get to the hospital while she made sure they knew I was coming. Addie picked me up shortly around

5:45PM. Hospital drive not fun. I remember it like it was yesterday trying to keep a conversation while having contractions. NOT FUN SITTING DOWN. Addie timed contractions at every 3-4 minutes. Husband stayed home to find a babysitter for our son and arrange his own ride there since he doesn't drive.

6:15PM Addie arrived and need to lean on stuff/Addies back to breath my way through contractions. Heidi was waiting for us. The assessment area says that I need a vaginal exam to see how I am progressing. I didn't want any exam throughout but if it meant I could get a room to deliver in so be it. Heidi checks me out and I am 8cm. Didn't even feel her hand inside me...very strange.

Delivery room I got my IV and monitor put on my belly....shitty! I was planning a home birth and was hoping to only have a IV in my arm IN CASE I needed it, instead I had antibiotics just in case. Didn't bother me too much since I didn't feel like walking around since I guess I was listening to my body because it was almost time for the delivery! I laboured with the head of the bed up all the way and kneeled and leaned on the top with my arms. Got to listen to Heidi tell the doctor to go away since she wasn't needed. Stressful hearing the doctor insist that she needed to be there because I was a VBAC and early. But Heidi was victorious! That doc GTFO!

I moaned/hummed through my uncomfortable contractions. After a bit I looked at Heidi and said "I'm not looking forward to these getting more painful. Does it get much worse?" She smiled and said that this is it, it doesn't get any worse and that I was doing great! I believed her. It was an amazing feeling, feeling baby slowly descend. In between contractions Heidi and Addie rubbed my back in circular motions and I felt like I was high as a kite. I enjoyed every second!!! The discomfort only turned to pain when someone was not squeezing my hips or doing it incorrectly. Between Heidi, Addie and my husband they took turns.

8:00PM-ish my husband showed up, along with my sister. This stressed me out big time since I didn't want her there. She is very "medical birthing type" and didn't need that negative energy in the room. I did feel bad she was suppose to be in the room while I birthed my first baby, but ended up C-section. This time she asked right on the spot if it was ok for her to stay. I was hesitant and said alright. A short time later I wasn't getting anywhere and both Addie and Heidi recommended that I change positions. I went to side lying (and in my head thought about the show Call the Midwife since most deliver that way) I was glad to move since my legs were cramping from kneeling for so long. Heidi and my husband stretched my hamstrings throughout the rest of labour whenever they could.

So my contractions got more intense at this point (not more painful) because my primal moan/pushing/grunting took over as I pushed. I was told after the birth that when I was kneeling for that long stretch in labour that I announced I wanted a rest and put my head down for 5-10 minutes and everyone was quiet. and contractions slowed for a bit. I do not recall this. I started to crown and Heidi said "STOP" and do tee hee hee type breathing. Addie squeezes my hand and says loudly "I'm so sorry Anna, I know this is the worst part but it's almost over". I looked at her and also loudly said "what! I've had shits that hurt more than this" Everyone laughed until the primal stuff came back and I continued to push out baby.

Baby went onto my chest. Baby looks to be a decent weight for 34.6 weeks. I have a moment to breath baby in and enjoy the moment. Wow! Pushing baby out actually felt great! Everyone makes it out to be the worst pain ever! Everyone wait's patiently and then starts asking "so...what is it?" I lifted baby up and had a very fast look. "What the fuck is on my clit!?! Get it off, it hurts! I think a girl but didn't get a good look, the cord is too tight on my clit." Heidi slackened it some and I lifted baby again. A GIRL!!! I got to use the name I have been saving since I was a teenager. Maggie! I was so happy!!

Soon after Heidi told me to start pushing out the placenta. That was easy and uneventful. Eli didn't want to cut the cord (just like our first baby) so Heidi offered the chance to me. I took the scissors and then looked at my sister and asked if she would like to. She was so happy to do so! Delayed cord cutting for 14 minutes. The whole time I had a good friend takes photos for me during labour and birth. So happy I did so, even though I can only show those close to me because I was wearing my birthday suite the whole time. After birth I asked Heidi for a piece of placenta which I ate raw on the spot. No flavor but a strange texture. The rest I took home and blended it within a few smoothies. Eating it all within 72 hours.

The rest of the story is crappy. I stayed the night in NICU in a recliner with Maggie on my chest. Heidi had to fight for me to leave the next afternoon. I signed the against medical advice forms, got to listen to fear mongering about how my baby will die and took off. Maggie was healthy at 5 pounds 10 oz and at exactly 35 weeks the day she went home.

Nobody asked me why I think I went into labour early. The reason they wanted to keep Maggie in the hospital for many days was to find the reason she came early. I hate hospitals and took her home. For the record. Do not move furniture and heavy storage bins while 34 weeks pregnant. You WILL go into labour soon after.

Being a beautiful summers day when we drove home my newly aged, 2 year old son was outside playing with Babcia (grandma) and leaned down over Maggie for the first time and said "Hello baby!" It was heart warming. Now I want more children because I love being a mom and I loved giving birth! I love breastfeeding! Also tandem! Only time will tell if our family expands.

Heidi was an amazing midwife!! I really put her to the test with getting the doctor out of delivery and then fighting for me to go home soon after. Thanks Heidi!