Gabriel Jack’s Birth
Jack’s Birth Story
This was my fifth baby but first home/water/hypnobaby. My pregnancy was wrought with depression and anxiety. I was told by many to just go with what I knew and stick with the hospital. It was believed that I wasn’t strong enough to handle a natural home birth. I put my heart and soul into making it work out. Everything related to natural birth and positive stories that I could get my hands on was devoured! It felt like my longest pregnancy because my every breath was for my baby. In the past, I would try to go on with life and let the pregnancy pass quickly. This time, I learned all I could and paid attention to every detail. Regardless of the need to medicate my anemia, depression, anxiety and group B strep, I was determined to have my home birth. When my baby presented himself breech at 38 weeks, my midwife gently and casually turned him around. I didn’t even have to worry about c-section because it went so quickly and so well. The Lord was definitely on my side.
My husband and I took the Hypnobabies course from the wonderful Laura Lund. We made some dear friends and had a fabulous time. I realized for the first time in my life that I had no clue how to relax. The skills I learned will be tools I plan to utilize my whole life! Our last class came at my 37 week mark. I was ready to go. Too bad my baby wasn’t. As each week passed, I wondered if my pregnancy would actually end! During my 40th week, some very stressful things in my life came up and I was so grateful that I wasn’t in labor or caring for a newborn. When that stress was ironed out, I was ready again! Silly me. During a moment of depression, I found an email from a friend in my Hypnobabies class that lifted my spirits. She was due the same day I was and also had no sign of progression. I suggested that if we hadn’t had our babies by the next Wednesday, we should go to dinner. How that changed my perspective! (great thing to do if you’re over your guess date!) All of a sudden, I wanted my baby to stay in, just a little longer! My husband felt the same way. He had been telling our baby to come out and now he was asking him to stay in! On Tuesday night, we received a call saying that my friends water had broken. I was happy for her but devastated that I didn’t have my baby or the dinner date. I waited to hear how her birthing time went but instead was told that nothing was happening and she wanted to go out! We had a wonderful evening together. When we came home, I was ready, again. I had some different feeling birthing waves and thought-maybe?!
That night, I decided that since the next day was my husbands birthday, we would celebrate and help move things along. 😉 It worked beautifully! My pressure waves started coming every 10 minutes. For about an hour I tried to rest. I listened to a Fear Release for a little while but the intensity picked up and I needed to get out of bed. I sat on my birthing ball and draped over some pillows. I asked my husband to time them for me but he kept falling back to sleep. After only a short time, I knew this was it. I got him up and had him get the pool set up. During that time, my pressure waves felt pretty sporadic. Since it was 2:00 in the morning and I figured I had some time, I didn’t want to wake anyone yet. My husband read a few prompts to me then started to improvise while he finished preparations. I felt it was time to call in the troops. My pressure waves were totally tolerable but they were coming very close together.
Because I was tested positive for GBS, I knew I needed to do a Hibiclens wash at the beginning of my birthing time and every 4 to 6 hours afterwards. My husband called our midwife and she gave us the directions. Then he called my sister-in-law, mom and sister. My sister-in-law lives very close to us so she was the first to arrive-thank goodness. I was using the bathroom while my husband was making the calls and when I came out, he asked if I wanted to get in the pool. I stepped in and an intense pressure wave hit. I cried out for help because I felt like something major was happening and I didn’t have any control. My sister-in-law walked in at that moment and said, “this baby is coming soon!” She has had five at home so she knew what she was talking about! No one else, including my midwife, had made it yet.
My husband checked to see if the baby was crowning. Sure enough, my bag of waters was right there and the baby’s head was an inch beyond that. With the next wave, I couldn’t help but push with all my might. It was absolutely amazing to feel my baby’s head and know that if I pushed just a moment longer, I would find reprieve in his neck. My sister-in-law said that he was posterior and watched as he turned when I pushed his shoulders out. With a gush and a slide, he was here! His amniotic sac, or “call,” was over his face. (I knew he was a special boy!) I saw my husband pull the sac out of the water. My sister-in-law and husband caught him. I flipped around and took my baby. He quickly cried a nice cry and then settled into me. Any “pain” I felt was gone. The hot water felt so good and my baby looked wonderful. My mom and sister came in shortly after. They just missed it! My mom got my 2-year-old, Brigham, up and my sister woke my other three children. Brigham smiled and said, “It’s Jack-Jack!” He was thrilled. The other kids were a little too sleepy to get the whole excitement thing. But, they came around-they had a difficult time going back to sleep. I had them leave the room while I got out of the pool and delivered the placenta. When they came back in, we just enjoyed our beautiful new little boy. No machines, no rushing him away, no medication! It was wonderful!
From beginning to end, it was 3 hours total. Nothing at all like my previous long and painful hospital births. My daughter said it would be stupid for me to ever go back to a hospital! I’m glad she caught on. I have loved sharing my birth story with friends and neighbors because no one believes you can have a mostly pain-free birth without a doctor to make it happen. My mind and body relaxed. The functions God put in me worked! Even with a posterior baby. (I never did get a wash done and my little one is healthy and doing great!)
Jack Monroe weighed 8 lbs (my biggest) and 20 ½” long. He was born at 3:30 a.m. September 27, 2007-his daddy’s 33rd birthday! To make it even better, my friend had her baby boy later that afternoon! Happy Birthday boys!