L began care with me at 7 weeks along in her pregnancy. This was her third pregnancy, but going to be her first home birth. L’s pregnancy progressed along beautifully. At 39.1 weeks, L requested to be checked since she had been having cramping and contractions. She was 1cm dilated, 50% effaced and baby was at a -1 station. On October 19, L text me to say she was losing her mucus plug and contractions were coming at a more regular pattern and she felt like maybe her body was starting the process. We kept in touch through out the day. That evening L rested and I talked to her about checking in in the morning. The morning of the 20th, L text and told me her contractions had changed around 6am and were now closer and stronger, but she wasn’t ready for me to come yet. Shortly after noon, L text me to come and check on her and see what was going on. I arrived at quarter to one and checked L’s cervix. We definitely were in active labor! I found L to be 6cm dilated, 80% effaced and baby at a -1 station. We joked that the baby would be here long before The Walking Dead that evening. Probably a joke we should not have made… As we would soon find out what a journey little Greenlee was going to take her mama on. Contractions were coming every 4-5 minutes, lasting a minute long. L walked around her living area, pausing to breathe through the wave of each contraction. C, her husband, and I worked on setting up the birth pool and getting it filled. I called T to come to assist the birth as we anticipated things to move quickly. A little after 2pm, the birthing pool was ready and L was ready to get in. She got into the water and relaxed. Contractions were now coming every 3 minutes and lasting 90 seconds. By watching L’s demeanor, it seemed that we had moved into transition. For the next hour, L rotated positions in the pool. Squatting, then sitting, then hands and knees. Soon L stated that things were hurting, and she was starting to feel the urge to push. At 3:30, I checked and found L to be completely dilated and effaced and baby at a +2 station. I encouraged L that her baby was close and would be here soon. We had no idea what pushing was going to look like! So L pushed. Every 5 minutes another wave came and she pushed. She pushed in every position possible in the pool. An hour later, I suggest L get out of the pool and go to the toilet to empty her bladder and see if the position change would help Greenlee to come. At 4:50, L got off the toilet and started to walk to her room when her water broke. It was clear and baby sounded beautiful. We moved her to her bed and encouraged her to rest in between contractions. Then we started rotating the clock on the bed. L pushed on her right side. Then pushed on her left side. Then pushed in her hands and knees. Such a strong woman! I checked her cervix at the two hour mark and felt a considerable amount of molding. Baby was now in a +3 station. I would apply pressure vaginally to help L with pushing and we could all see the head as she pushed. A little after 6pm, L looked at me and asked if there was anyway for me to pull her out. I told her I wish I could. I suggested trying to sit back “hospital style”. L said no. I checked her a bit deeper to get a better feel of baby’s position. Where I expected to feel a face, I felt the occiput. Quite shocked at what I was feeling, since baby had consistently been in a LOA (left occiput anterior) position. I talked to L and C about baby’s position and explained that posterior baby’s can come out, they just take more work. At 6:27pm, T convinced L to try “hospital” style positioning. L got in a semi-sitting position and leaned back on C. Two minutes later, baby girl was crowning! At 6:30p, with one last push, L brought Greenlee earth side. Greenlee came out in the ROP (right occiput posterior) position. We could now see why it took Greenlee so much work to come earth side! Greenlee latched like a champ and was alert looking at her mom and dad. L’s strength inspired me in labor. What work women do to bring their baby’s into this world in a gentle, peaceful environment! L was amazing! Welcome to the world sweet Greenlee! Born on October 20, 2013 at 6:30pm, weighing in at 7.14#, 20″ long. Such an honor to be part of L’s labor journey.
A Wee update As nighttime continues to creep sooner and sooner, the tasks of the day are not decreasing. Actually, the opposite