by Ashley, Texas

All of a sudden I got one that felt like it wasn’t going to stop – the pressure just kept building and then – pop! My water broke!

natural water birth story

10 days overdue and finally something happened

I was 10 days overdue and had finally decided to stop working and focus on getting this baby to come. That morning when I woke up and went to the restroom I realized that I had lost my mucus plug. I tried not to get too excited and poured myself a bowl of cereal.

While watching the morning news, I suddenly felt as though someone was grabbing me around my belly and gently squeezing. I stopped mid-chew and paid attention. It was definitely different from the Braxton Hicks and the occasional crampy feelings I had been having for weeks.

My husband was heading out the door to work right after that, and I decided not to say anything just in case I was wrong. I spent the day just puttering around the house and trying to sense a pattern. I honestly think I spent too much time focusing on the contractions instead of going about my business, and nothing productive seemed to really happen.

And the contractions got more intense…

My husband didn’t come home until after 6 pm, and by then I knew something was happening. I had already called the birth center to tell them they might be getting a call later that night, but it looked like it was going to be a while yet. Once my husband got home, I felt like I could really relax and the contractions got more intense and regular.

We went up to the birth center right at midnight, and when the midwife checked me I was at 4cm dilated. I was so grateful that I was far enough along that we didn’t have to go back home!

And the water broke…

From there, I really started to feel good and we chatted and laughed with the midwife for a while and she observed my contractions while I rocked in a rocking chair. Then, she suggested I lay down and rest since I hadn’t gotten any sleep.

I lay down on my side and was surprised to find that I could actually fall asleep briefly in between contractions. They were getting pretty intense at this point, and all of a sudden I got one that felt like it wasn’t going to stop – the pressure just kept building and then – pop! My water broke!

It felt great, such a release. I woke my husband up (who had all but passed out) and told him what had happened. He went and got the midwife. She checked me again and I was 6 cm.

And then I gave birth in a birthing tub

She started the water in the birthing tub and I felt rejuvenated and excited to be progressing. Getting in the tub felt wonderful. Up to this point, I had been just breathing through the contractions, but I noticed that my arms and legs were starting to feel a little ‘tingly’. I mentioned this to the midwife and she said I wasn’t getting enough oxygen and should vocalize during my contractions. I started doing that, kind of a long, low, cow-like bellowing through each one and that really helped a lot.

I got on my knees and leaned over the side of the tub. That position felt really good and allowed me to rest my head on the side. What seemed like a short time later I felt like I had to pee and got out of the tub and went into the restroom. Just sitting there increased the pressure soooo much I felt like it was already time to push. I came out and told the midwife and she checked me and said it was time.

My husband looked a little scared (he had been keeping his distance on the other side of the room) but the midwife told him to come over to the tub and put a cold washcloth on my forehead in between contractions. I got into position and with the next contraction, I was pushing. It felt wonderful to be able to work with the contractions instead of just getting through them.

I remember a burning sensation, but I was on a different mental plane at that point. I knew it hurt, but it didn’t matter.

At one point, I calmly asked “am I tearing? I feel like I’m splitting apart..” and she just told me to keep pushing. After pushing for only 17 minutes my daughter was out.

I was surprised to see her being held up to me, ready for me to take her into my arms – I couldn’t believe it was already over. I held her on my chest while the midwife suctioned her mouth. After a few minutes, my husband got to cut the cord. Then, the birth assistants arrived! I had progressed so quickly they hadn’t been able to get there in time.

The placenta came out pretty quick and then I had to make my way to the bed because I was bleeding a lot and needed to be checked. It turns out I had a small tear but was also hemorrhaging. I got a shot of Pitocin in the leg to stimulate more contractions in order to stop the bleeding and the midwife stitched me up.

Finally, we were able to calmly lay in the big bed and enjoy our new baby! Our family had been out in the waiting room and everyone came in to see her right away. She nursed very quickly and easily, and we were able to go home within 7 hours of delivery.

I am so grateful for my natural water birth!

Perfect! Can’t wait for the next one!

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