Though I don’t usually share birth stories publicly on my website, this story was one that I just felt needed to be told. After obtaining permission from the mom, I couldn’t wait to share a snapshot of her amazing journey. It is my hope that you enjoy it as much as I did, and that it gives you a glimpse of what the process looks like.
This Mom got in touch with me just two weeks before baby was due to arrive. We quickly arranged our first (and only) meeting to prepare for the birth. I was impressed with how well she knew what she wanted, and how quickly we were able to connect. As I go on-call at 38 weeks, I was on-call immediately after we met. Since she was a first time mom, I expected baby wouldn’t come until his due date or maybe even later.
On the big day I don’t think either of us knew this was it. After two calls from her to report some infrequent contractions, I carried on my day as usual. Even she was still trying to get out the door to pick up a few last minute things. Often with first time moms, they are only too eager to get to the hospital. With this gal, she barely made it in time! When I called at the end of the work day to check in and couldn’t reach her, I assumed things were progressing faster then expected.
Within minutes of getting a call from her other labor support person, I arrived to meet them at the hospital. We were all amazed that she was already 8 cm dilated. She was so strong and able-bodied that we weren’t even sure she was in labor up until that point. Since the contractions were coming close and strong, we didn’t have time to use visualization. Apart from that, most things went exactly as she had hoped in her birth plan. She chose to use the gas (nitrous oxide) which seemed to help her quite a bit. This was all she used for pain. Though she wasn’t having back labor, my attempts at the double hip squeeze provided very helpful. She said the pain become much more manageable when I was able to be “hands on” for every contraction. Just over an hour after arriving at the hospital she was fully dilated and ready to push.
The average pushing time for first time moms is one-two hours, often longer. I didn’t expect she would take long, as labor itself had progress so quickly. Throughout the pushing, I provided suggestions to her labor support person to keep her hydrated, encourage her, and apply a cool cloth to her forehead. I continued to do the double hip squeeze to minimize her discomfort and help make more room for baby. She pushed very effectively and delivered a baby boy after pushing for just over an hour.
Her big, healthy, baby boy was the center of attention in a bustling hospital room. His head of curly black hair signaled to the world that a cute little man was on his way. After all of the medical aspects were taken care of, she was able to cuddle and get to know her little guy in her arms after carrying him on the inside for nine months. Before leaving, I helped her with her first breastfeeding. She was so grateful for my support that she gave such positive feedback even before I left her that evening: “She certainly wasn’t an extra body… I’m eternally grateful for her usefulness and presence during the birth of my son”. They say that a picture is worth a thousand words, but I think in this case, these words are worth a thousand pictures. It is honor to receive such a response.
Before baby was two weeks old, we did our follow up appointment. This is such a great time to just check in on mom and baby to be sure all is well. For clients that had confusing or difficult birth experiences, it is the perfect time to clarify and begin to work through those things. For this mom, things were going very well- she is such a natural!
I hope that gives you just a glimpse of this amazing mom and her story of bringing her son into the world. If you, or anyone you know is looking for a doula, please contact me and we can begin the journey of working together for a wonderful birth experience!
*Shared with Permission