All three of my loves are sleeping so I'll take a minute to record Ivy's birth while it's fresh on my mind. On Wednesday morning I woke up feeling discouraged again, that nothing had taken place over night. I was 41+5 weeks pregnant and was feeling so low. I tried my best to just be grateful for a healthy body and baby, but mentally, it was tough. I knew I needed to have a better mindset, but my emotions were all over the place by this point. I started to prepare and accept mentally that an induction was most likely going to happen and I needed to be okay with it. It was really hard for me that last week and a half. This was probably the most challenging part of this pregnancy.
I woke up with some heavy discharge but went about our morning as usual, not knowing at the time I was actually just losing my mucus plug. Darren brought me the car at his lunch break and Wesley and I headed to my moms like we had been almost everyday for the last two weeks. We swam for a bit, then headed home and hung out with my brother and his wife who live in our guest house for a little while before going to prep dinner. It was a very normal day and I was still not feeling anything. At 5:00 pm we went to pick up Darren and then headed to the store to get some things for our taco salad. As we were leaving I told Darren I'd just wait for him to get the car so I didn't have to walk so far. A minute after he walked away I felt my first contraction at 6:05. I had back labor with Wesley so I wasn't positive this was the real thing, but assumed so with the difference in discomfort. We got home, Darren started to make dinner and the contractions started to come quick. So I hopped in the tub, turned on my audio birth affirmations (these were such a huge help) and started managing each wave. I felt amazing and was grateful for how relaxed I was remaining. Wes came in and wanted to be apart of the fun and hopped into the tub with me! This was such a fun and cherished moment to have my son and husband there laboring with me at home. It seemed like the contractions were coming really quickly already so I asked Darren to time them. I was so excited when he told me they were already only 3 minutes apart! I had the thought this was going to be quick, but I don't think I realized just how quick. I told him I wanted to move to the bed and managed a few more intense waves there. Wesley was excited and was having fun rubbing lotion on my back. By that point they were 2 minutes apart and pretty unbearable so I told Darren we needed to leave. It felt like it was all going so fast but my body was telling me it was time, so I listened. Darren turned off the stove, called the midwife, photographer and my mom and quickly got the car ready. We made the 10 minute drive while I managed each wave, talking and laughing and smiling in between. I had told him days before that I wanted to smile during labor this time, and I was! I felt excited and energized in between each one.
When we arrived at 7:35 I was well into transition, unable to focus on anything other than getting her here. Each contraction was so intense and I was very irritable, sort of yelling at everyone to hurry up. We checked in and impatiently waited for a nurse to bring me upstairs. That seemed like a lifetime, as laboring in a hard wheelchair is very difficult. I'm focusing on each one as it comes, moaning that deep "ah" moan that laboring mamas do. We finally made it to triage, where they tried to get more information from me as I labored. This annoyed me as I thought of it later, but in the moment I was in my own world, not giving them any answers, just focused on my baby. My nurse came in and saw how deep in it I was and made the decision to override procedure and hurried me into delivery. I'm so grateful she did that and recognized that I was about to have a baby. (Aint nobody got time for questions when your baby is literally coming out) We got into the delivery room around 7:50.
My midwife checked me right away and I was at a 7, Ivy's head was right there and my water was partially broken. Darren held my hands as I soared through each one, assuring me that I could do this. That I was doing it. He was my strength when I asked for an epidural (not that I really wanted one or would have been able to get one anyway) and I could not have gotten through those last minutes without him. After a few contractions, I felt the need to push, kind of surprised at what I was already feeling! I told her and she said if I was at a ten, I could push. She checked and I was at a nine so I asked for her to just break the rest of my water because I knew my sweet girl was not going to wait. That amazing gush flew down my legs and then it was time. But I resisted. I was resisting the push! I was literally trying to keep my legs closed and my nurse just kept telling me over and over to open. I was still full of so much fear. I was finally faced with the opportunity of meeting my baby and I was still holding on. But then I looked at my my nurse, my husband and my midwife at my feet all encouraging me to let go and to meet my baby and finally gave in. I said the words "let go" out loud and surrendered. I have never felt so present in a moment as this, it felt as if I was out of body watching from above. With Wes it's all a bit of a blur, as I was so tired by this point. But I was fully there with her as she was moving through me and oh my, there is nothing better than that. A couple pushes later our Ivy entered the world at 8:24 pm on July 1, 2015, guided by her daddy's loving hands. We were in awe, in love and mostly we were finally complete.
I just have to say, I don't think it matters where or how a mama delivers her babies so long as she feels safe and comfortable. It's such a personal decision. For me, I have always wanted a home water birth and delivered Wes at a birth center and loved it, so I really was not excited about the idea of delivering at a hospital. But we decided a hospital was our best option this time around and it turned out to be a great experience. The hospital was so baby friendly, encouraging breastfeeding and skin to skin like I've never seen before. And I wasn't there all day laboring, which was how I envisioned it going. Sometimes our experiences turn out better than we imagine, I suppose.
We cannot get enough of our beautiful baby girl and couldn't be more grateful for the light she has brought to our family.
These amazing photos are taken by my good friend Stephanie and I couldn't be more grateful for them!