I've been asked a few times about my birth story already & I am more than happy to share it with my followers!
So here it goes!!
At 33 weeks gestation, I went to see my doctor for a check up and we saw that I was already dilating and having contractions that were 4 minutes apart. Oddly enough I couldn't feel the contractions and spent a good amount of time arguing with my OB until she put me on the NST and I saw the contractions for myself.
I was sent to Labor & Delivery to try and calm my uterus down. My husband I weren't surprised by this at all. I was born with a heart condition and we knew that pregnancy could lead to some complications. We (my doctor, husband, and I) were very happy that we had made it to 33 weeks without having complications-- it was much further than anyone expected me to make. My doctor tried giving me a medication to slow my labor but it caused issues with my heart. My doctor and I quickly realized that anything that they could give me to slow my labor down would make my heart act up. SO--- once my contractions slowed down to about every 6-10 minutes my doctor let me go home on partial bed rest & wanted to see me at 34 weeks.
Well we made it to 34 weeks! Saw my doctor and I was still progressing, so she put me on total bed rest. Her goal was to get me to 34 weeks, but my goal was 36 weeks-- so we did what we could to make it there. My amniotic sac had herniated down into the birth canal-- which is normal and not that scary... you just have to be careful not to break the bag of waters!
I saw my doctor at 35 weeks and she told me she would be legitimately shocked if I made it to 36 weeks. So I was on bed rest and miserable!
Then the labor started.....
On Wednesday 2/11/15 I started having contractions that I could feel and I was pretty sure I was in labor, so I went to the doctor. The doctor saw that I was at 90% effaced, head at +1, and was dilated to 4 cm. She said "You are close-- go home and have sex!"....... Easier said than done!
So we went home and had relations because I was miserable-- beyond miserable. The contractions were 4 minutes apart and never let up. I wasn't sleeping but maybe an hour at night..... This went on until Friday 2/13/15.
I saw my chiropractor on 2/13/15 and she said that according to my alignment, I had a few more days until I would be going into labor. I was EXHAUSTED and couldn't get much sleep but at this time my contractions had pretty much gone away-- I was having a few an hour but that was it. Later that night I spoke with a midwife from my school (The Naturopathic Institute of Therapies and Education) and she confirmed that my little guy was posterior & that could lead to a harder labor-- so we should try spinning him. I was having back labor-- I literally could only feel the contractions in my back. I had spent the last 3 days hanging out on my birth ball-- since that was the only way I could sit without terrible pain.
My husband and I did the exercises on spinning babies and hoped for the best. My back pain completely went away and the contractions were gone.... Little did we know it was the calm before the storm...
We woke up on 2/14/15 VALENTINE'S DAY!!! We had no plans whatsoever besides maybe getting something for dinner. I had woken up in crazy pain and was irritable. My low back was killing me and my pelvis felt like it was going to shatter. So I came out to the living room and sat on my birthing ball and watched a movie on netflix.
I had mentioned to my husband that I felt "wet" and he said "Maybe your water partially broke". .... I was in denial of this-- like nope I probably just slightly peed on myself or am having watery discharge.
The day went on as usual. Then about 3:00 I had gone to the bathroom and came back to the living room and sat on the couch. My husband was on the phone with his friend talking about a video game that had just came out. Then all of a sudden I was wet, the wetness had gone through my undies and onto my pants. That's when it hit me...
I turned to my husband who was still on the phone and said "I think I'm leaking" he got up and looked and nodded. He got off the phone and said "Yea it looks like you are--- you wanna go get something to eat?"
My husband is great for saying odd things at the weirdest of times...
I said "No honey, if my water has broke remember they said I can't wait around at home I need to come right in-- even if I question that it has broke we need to go in."
With that we grabbed out phone chargers & birth bag full of homeopathics and essential oils and were on our way. I was still in denial as we drove to the hospital.. I mean, how perfect? I would go into labor on Valentine's Day. My whole life I had thought that having a child on Valentine's Day would be the coolest thing in the world. It would be such a cool way to share your love!
I got to the hospital only to be greeted by nurses claiming I probably peed my pants. I wasn't thrilled. Something in my mood had shifted-- my labor had begun and I didn't realize it. When the nurse went to check me, she wasn't even all the way in when she said "Yup your leaking" then I felt a "pop" and suddenly my water had broke... my water had broke EVERYWHERE. It was the weirdest sensation. Almost like I was peeing-- and my body kept trying to stop the peeing lol but there was no peeing going on whatsoever.
Things got real very fast. My mother & grandmothers (both maternal and paternal) had very fast labors and my doctor thought I would as well. I sent out a text message & then updated Facebook letting family and friends know we were going to be getting our human soon. My family was immediately concerned about my heart- as was I.
They got me into a room & I gave them my birth plan & asked for my cardiologist or someone in cardiology to be paged and let know I was there. I also asked them to call my specific doctor who had a plan... Turned out that she was unavailable and I was slightly devastated-- but the doctor who was on call I really liked as well.
I went from having moderate contractions to having contractions so bad I could barely breathe in about 20 minutes. I wasn't able to sit down or be in the bed at all. My husband rubbed my back constantly and I kept bending over or squatting down. A nurse came in and asked me if I wanted the water proof monitors so I could sit in the shower on the birthing ball. I accepted this happily.
I have to say the biggest relief I had was sitting on the birth ball while hot water ran on my back. I did a lot of praying and thanking god for the opportunity to be a mom-- to be my son's mom. I thanked god for the ability to attempt a natural birth. I did a lot of praying out loud for a couple hours.
Then the transitional phase happened. All I could do was cry. I was in the shower on the ball and just sobbing. Sobbing because I had a heart condition and couldn't have real medicine even if I wanted to. Sobbing because this was really happening. Sobbing because I was a bit scared. I was scared because no one knew what was going to happen with my heart. I was scared I was going to die and leave my husband to raise our son alone. I never have feared death. I've come close to dying a few times because of my heart and I never feared death, but becoming a mother and realizing you could leave behind someone who needs you-- needs your milk & needs a mother-- it's a completely different feeling.
I didn't think I could do it. I kept telling my husband I couldn't do it. He was a trooper. He kept telling me this was what I wanted, our son was going to be in my arms soon, and this was all going to be over before I knew it. Then the chest pain happened & I thought I was going to die. The nurses had refused to put a heart monitor on me for some crazy reason. Cardiology had never shown up and my contractions were so close together that it was practically like I was just having constant contractions. I started asking for medication to help my heart calm down. I knew any type of pain medication would sedate my heart a little bit. I said I wanted something small nothing big. Nothing considered a narcotic, no epidural, no spinal, etc.
It took them 30 minutes to get an answer from cardiology as to if I could have something or not. By that time my body was involuntarily pushing. They gave me a small dose of medicine-- which did absolutely nothing whatsoever for my pain, but it calmed my heart & brought my blood pressure down. Then my doctor came running in-- involuntary pushing is apparently a big deal to the nurses who don't want to be the ones delivering your baby hah!
Seeing that my baby was posterior still, my doctor literally put me in every possible position. I was at 8 1/2 cm dilated, head at +3, oh-- and my cervix wouldn't fully efface... My doctor had to manually move my cervix-- all I can say is OUCH... That is when the screaming began-- with her many attempts to get my damn cervix to get out of the way. Then the crazy positions continued-- while I screamed my head off.
Then she asked me to start pushing with my body. This is when my mind and my body completely stopped working together. I would try to do what they told me to do and it just wouldn't happen.
After 25 minutes of trying to push & screaming-- suddenly my body pushed and he was in my arms.
My labor lasted 4 1/2 hours. That was it.. I was shocked when they told me how fast it went. I was embarrassed for sure-- because of all the screaming.
I later found out about not fully dilating. I delivered my son at an 8 1/2 cm. He also came out sideways. He wasn't posterior or anterior. His body had half spun. So he was facing my my right hip. My pelvis didn't separate properly because of his position & my pubic bone had lifted and shifted to the left allowing my son's shoulders to come out. So all the screaming-- that was for something. Embarrassed? Yes!! Proud? Extremely-- my heart lasted through the labor & birth of my son! The medication helped but did nothing for my pain. My doctor told me later that she knew it wouldn't do anything for the pain but she also thought it might help my heart-- which was the only reason she let them give it to me. She said she was proud of me for doing a natural birth and was slightly surprised I did it without huge heart complications.
Ezra James was born at 8:25pm on Valentine's Day.
We are thrilled and so in love with our calm & peaceful baby. He hardly cries-- unless you are changing his diaper. He doesn't really cry when he wants to eat, he fusses. His neck and shoulder were quite tight-- so he sees a pediatric chiropractor who is amazing! He isn't a fan of being adjusted but hopefully he will only need one or two more! He was slightly early, being born at 35 weeks 6 days but he is doing SO well!!! I will always say "Try a natural birth!" I was up and walking around within an hour after he was born. I have energy & it's not taking much time to recover-- practically none. Of course, I am resting a lot, simply because it is what the body needs regardless of whether you think it does or not!
I have no regrets about birthing my son! Next time, we want to try laboring in the bath tub not just the shower. I couldn't labor in the water because my strep b results hadn't come back until right before I delivered & they were negative lol. I saved my placenta & have made placenta smoothies every day since he was born. I have had minimal bleeding & no baby blues whatsoever. I have energy and feel great! Besides a bit of soreness in my pelvis, you wouldn't have even known I had a baby!
Until next time! Love & Light!!
Who am I?
My name is Jessica Kellaway! I am the earth loving, natural parenting, Jesus loving weirdo your mama might have warned you about!