It is so awesome the way God joins paths and allows people to connect. I was given L’s information from a friend to design a logo for my home birth practice when I was starting up my business. In August, L called saying she was 20 weeks pregnant and was established with hospital midwives for prenatal care thus far, but kept having dreams that she should have a home birth…. with me. We set up a time to chat more in depth, and soon she began her care with me. L’s pregnancy progressed perfectly. She began seeing a chiropractor, and was amazed at how good she felt through out her pregnancy! L went into spontaneous labor with her first child during her 39th week. She felt she would probably follow the same path. This little guy had his own plan! Three days passed her due date, L text me that she was finally feeling contractions! Not super close, long or intense, but contractions none the less! We discussed eating, drinking and sleeping and she agreed to the plan. I told her I would wait to hear from her when things got more intense. At 345 on January 29, L awoke to contractions that were a bit more intense, coming every 4-5 minutes. She could not sleep through them. About an hour later, she noticed a slow trickle. She called me suspecting her water had broke. Her water broke at the beginning of her labor with her first baby. I got up and got ready and headed to L’s home. Amnioswab confirmed that L’s water had broken. We decided we would defer cervical exams for awhile and let the laboring journey be. Contractions came about every 5 minutes all morning. Not super strong, and not getting closer. We used an herbal tincture and essential oils to help bring them closer together. The weather was nice in the morning, and we walked around the subdivision to help bring the contractions closer and stronger. At lunch time, we made the decision to go out and eat and see if a change in environment changes the contractions. L really was craving a cuban sandwich so we all loaded up and went to Central Texas BBQ for lunch. We returned to the house, and L decided to try and take a little nap and pray. I encouraged the rest, as L would need it to get through the labor journey. One thing that was so special to me about L’s labor and birth was she had written out a paper of her prayers for this labor and birth. One of her prayers was that through her labor journey that when it got tough and painful, that she could bring it back to the cross and focus on the pain and sacrifice Christ gave for us. Not wording that word for word, but the point is there. It touched me. I never really considered that the pain we as women experience in childbirth is the closest we have to feeling what Christ went through for us. After her nap, we went and walked. And walked and walked. Tried some curb walking, squatting with contractions. When she got tired, L would sit on the birth ball, and then get up and walk some more. Close to 5pm, we decided we should do a vaginal exam and see where we were at in the labor journey. L was 3-4cm, 80% effaced and at a 0 station. During the vaginal exam, we discovered that baby was acynclitic. Out to curb walking we went! And then we did some belly sifting with the rebozo to jiggle baby’s head around. Then lunging, and onto to knee chest. Changing positions often to encourage rotation of baby’ head. Quarter after seven we decided to do another exam. 5/90/0 with a bulging bag of water! We were thankful to confirm that L had experienced a hind leak earlier, and was still protected with her forebag. Baby was still acycnclitic. We continued multiple positions, as well as herbs and using the breast pump to bring stronger contractions. A little after ten, we did another exam. 5-6/90/0. Patient was in a very positive attitude, and okay with the way she was progressing. Around midnight, L and M decided to lay in bed and get some rest. L was sound asleep and then would wake and gently moan through contractions. Contractions slowed to around every 8-12 minutes. God was gracing her with a good break for sleep. Close to 330 in the morning, patient woke and we decided to do another cervical exam. 7-8/100/0, bloody show. Sleep helped immensely! She made great progress. She was feeling some pain in her lower back and decided to try a bath. She sat in the bath for awhile, and then got up and walked around her room, squatting with contractions. Around 5, L and M laid back down and got some more rest. Again, the contractions slowed to around every 8-12 minutes, but when a contraction came, it was intense! L woke around 7 and we went out for a walk. It was much chillier this morning than the previous day. Contractions were closer together with walking, and much stronger! Patient said she feeling some pressure. At 8:15, a cervical exam noted no change from the prior exam. A big, bulgy amniotic sac was definitely evident at the cervix. I discussed the risks and benefits of breaking the water with L and M. They decided that they did want to me to break the water. Contractions got stronger. L was standing, rocking her hips. Then, laid on her side, and onto hands and knees. She was so amazing at listening to her body and changing positions. Shortly after ten a cervical exam found L to have an anterior lip of cervix remaining and baby at a +2 station. Baby was coming down well with contractions. We tried pulsatilla and evening primrose oil to help melt away that lip. L got into knee chest position to help baby put different pressure on the lip. L had a strong urge to push, but the lip could not be held back during a cervical exam. The lip persisted for quite awhile. L got into the shower to help get through the contractions. The pushing urge was strong, but the shower helped her resist the urge. Things were intense. M was a rock for L. It was beautiful seeing the connection they had. And no words can describe how beautiful and sweet it is to see a husband pray over his wife during such an intense time in the labor journey. At 1220, lip was still noted. Patient was leaning over the side of her bed. She requested that we try to reduce the lip. This procedure is done by me holding up the lip while she pushes through it. It is not a comfortable procedure by any means, but sometimes is necessary. It only took a couple contractions, but L was able to push baby past the cervical lip. Soon baby was crowning. At 1243 we had a baby. I caught the baby and handed him to L. They had waited until this moment to find out the sex. Baby was a boy! I am so blessed to know this sweet couple, and to have been there midwife. We got L settled, showered, fed and then performed baby’s newborn assessment and breastfed. John Paul’s big sister just adored her new baby! Congrats L and M on your precious baby boy! John Paul born at 1243 on 01/30/2013 weighing in at 8.14# and 22” long. So blessed to have been part of his birth!
Winter in Scotland
It has been a while since a new blog post, but with good reason, as it has continued to be a busy