January 31, 2013

36 Week Birth Story – HOME Delivery!


My son Gavin is turning one next Wednesday. I am finally putting the finishing touches on his birth story and thought I would share his much unexpected birth story. Enjoy! Kari

Dear Gavin,
Your dad and I took a 16 hour birth class in preparation for your arrival. We hoped to bring you into this world naturally and in the water. Your birth was not what either of us expected. It is hard for me to remember a lot of the details still today- probably because I was in so much shock. But, it is your story and I am here to tell it best that I can.

Your birth story starts on February 5, Super Bowl Sunday. However, instead of watching the Super Bowl, your dad and I worked on unclogging the kitchen sink. We had been working on it for over a week. That night we had cut a piece of the pipe out in the basement to better access the clog. Your dad and I decided not to put the pipe back together so we could clean it out better the next day. When we went to bed that night, the kitchen sink had a plunger over the drain and was obviously unusable. I was planning on spending the next day at the chiropractors, then meeting my dad for lunch, and then finishing taxes.

At about 11:00 pm, as I was getting ready for bed, my water broke. As I was only 36 weeks pregnant, at first I really didn’t believe it could be the start of labor. I did a little internet searching and concluded it was most likely my water breaking. Remembering from our childbirth classes that it is important to get some rest during early labor, I put the pants that got wet from my water breaking into the laundry machine (they were my favorite pants and I wanted them for the hospital!). Then, dad and I headed to bed. At about 1:00 am, the contractions started. Your dad could feel them before I could and would let me know when one was coming. At about 2:00 am, I decided to get up and pack the hospital bags while dad snoozed. It was the most randomly filled bag- nothing for your dad, a going home outfit that would not fit you until you were two months old, baby shampoo and a baby book, a couple tops for me. Come to find out later, not much would be useful!

At about 3:00 am, we called the hospital to let them know what was going on. They told us we could stay at home until 11:00 am the next morning if we were okay on our own. The midwife also called us and told us the same thing. I was relieved to hear the midwife on call that night was one I had actually seen during my pregnancy and really liked. We decided we were still okay and I continued to have unevenly timed contractions- some short, some long, and varying minutes apart. The pain was uncomfortable, but not unbearable. At 4:00 am, I threw up and knew instantly that I was in trouble. We had learned in our classes that most women throw up during transition, which is 8 centimeters. I went to tell your dad that I wasn’t comfortable being at home anymore and to pack his bag and head to the hospital. While he was doing this, I went to sit on the toilet. Upon wiping, I felt your head. Yep, you were right there.

In that moment, I did not feel panic. Rather, I knew a decision had to be made. Choice one was to make a run for the hospital and potentially deliver you on the side of the road (the hospital was a good 20 minutes away). Choice two was to call 911. I choose option two as I had no desire to be on the evening news. I called your dad from the bathroom and told him I needed him to call 911 as I could feel you head. Bless his heart, he did just that. He calmly accepted the situation without challenging me, freaking out, or going ballistic.

At about 4:20 am, the call was made. We have the whole phone call on tape, which may never be made public (pretty funny to listen to!). The first to arrive were two City Police Officers. Upon learning they would not be delivering you, I yelled at them, “You don’t know how to deliver babies? Who sent you?” They reassured me they could deliver babies, but we needed to wait for the paramedics. At about 4:45 am our heroes arrived, Angie and Bill, who were paramedics. I honestly was not in much pain until I threw up, then the contractions started coming fast and hard. Pushing you was pretty difficult and I was not exactly in the best position up against the bathroom wall. I kept thinking how I needed to get you out before the daycare parents arrived next door. When I thought I could push no more, you finally arrived at about 5:26 am (give or take, it was chaotic). You did not cry one bit. Angie immediately took you out to the hall to try and get you breathing. Once you were stabilized, they brought you back in. I was able to nurse you for a bit. Then, I walked down the stairs where a gurney was waiting. (Honestly, I asked for my pants on the way down the steps which they refused to give me!). I laid on the gurney, you were placed on my chest, and we were wheeled into the dark, cool night. As we were loaded into the ambulance, I noticed a firefighter I recognized from church. After revealing my lady parts to half the world, you think my modesty would be gone. However, I asked your dad if that was who I thought it was and if he was in the house. Dad assured me he was probably outside (yeah right!). Your dad sat in the front with Angie. We sat in the back and I held the oxygen tube to your nose. As soon as we were in, the lights on the truck went on right outside our driveway and off we went ninety miles an hour to the hospital. Once we got there, we parked in the ambulance garage and again went out into the dark, cold morning. We took the elevators up to the maternity ward. Going into the elevator, I asked your dad what he wanted your middle name to be- it was either going to be Miles or his name. He decided his name and I couldn’t have agreed more. Considering he almost delivered you, it only seemed right.

Once in our room, we got a picture taken with Bill and Angie that I treasure (how we had the peace of mind to think of that, I don’t know!). Then you were checked out with dad and I was stitched back together (that was brutal). And, that my dear Gavin, is how you entered the world. Fast and certainly on your own terms. It is not how I wished you to be born, but I suppose all that matters is you are safe and sound.



click here for info on how to submit your birth story.

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