The story of Henry’s Birth

September 16th, 2007

Thursday I was supposed to have a m/w appt but when I got there, I discovered it had been canceled because the m/w had been at a birth that day. I was disappointed because I really wanted to hear the baby’s heartbeat and see if the exam would shed any light on when to expect my baby! It was our day to be at Jackie’s house, so I headed back there for the rest of the afternoon.

We had a really yummy dinner of shepherd’s pie, and then Zibby and I went home (Buzz had to work late so he didnt make it over to dinner). The evening proceeded as normal, Zibby went to bed, and I tackled some condo association business. Around midnight I was heading to bed when I heard Zibby fussing. I went in and nursed her a little, and noticed that I was having some contractions. But, I’d been having them on and off for 3 weeks, so….I laid down, and was dozing, but also kind of aware that these were regular, getting stronger, and then I had a contraction and felt my water break. I got out of bed, not quite sure if it was really my water. It was 12:43 when I got up.

I made some toast and decided to watch a little tv. About a half hour later I was pretty convinced that I was in active labor and I couldnt watch tv anymore and needed Buzz to get up. He got up, but was kind of groggy for a bit. I called my friend Tina, who was my doula, and told her I thought this was it. She said I sounded too calm to be in labor, and we decided I’d call the m/w and let her know what was up, and then call her back.

The m/w said that everything sounded good, and to call her when I thought they should come over. Tina called back and we talked and decided Buzz would go get her. I called my friend Jackie and asked if she could come over and bring her birth ball and stay while Buzz was gone. She arrived alittle before 2 am. Buzz left to get Tina.

I sat on the birth ball and leaned over the arm of a chair, and during the ctx, Jackie would press down on my back. It was just exactly what I needed. By 2:30 however, we realized things were going very quickly and that we ought to get the pool started. I called the m/w back and asked her to come over. Jackie got the pool going, stopping every 2minutes to help me thru a ctx. I was now in the second bedroom, where we were putting the pool, kneeling on the futon sofa, leaning over the back of it.

By 3 am, Buzz and Tina got back, and Buzz immediately started filling the pool with water. Ctx were extremely intense at this point, and I was making it thru with counterpressure on my back from Jackie and/or Tina and making low moaning sounds. The mood was good, Jackie and Tina were joking and keeping me focused. The m/w and her assistant arrived around this time and started getting their goodies out. As soon as the pool was filled enough, I got in, probably around 3:15. The pool was an amazing relief. Again, the best position was for me to be on my knees, leaning over the edge. Tina was sitting on the floor in front of me holding my hands, and Jackie was pressing down on my back. I was surprised that I was already feeling the need to push. Everyone assured me everything was good and I started pushing.

It was a struggle to keep on top of the pressure, but everyone was so good and kept me focused and encouraged and I was able to get his head out in a couple of pushes. The baby gave me a little break at that point until the next ctx, so I got some good breaths in, and then two more pushes to get him born. I scooped him out of the water and brought him onto my chest. Zibby had been asleep until she heard me yelling while pushing him out. She came in and after he was born, she came over and kissed both of us. I told her she was officially a big sister now.

Jennifer, the m/w, needed to suction him and give him some oxygen to get him going, so I was just holding him for while and rubbing him until he started making some good noises. After the cord stopped pulsing, Tina cut it, and Buzz took our new son Henry while I got out of the pool. After I got into bed Buzz handed Henry back and I held him again. It wasnt too long before the placenta was born. (Zibby asked later what had been in that big bowl. I said, the placenta. She said, Mama, that was EEEWWWEEE)

Henry was 8 lbs and 20 inches long. At the 2 day follow up check, he was at 7 lbs 14 oz, and doing well. Nursing is a little challenging, but we are getting the hang of each other and he is so far a very sweet and peaceful little guy. Zibby is thrilled with him and is being a big help to us. Buzz is taking good care of all three of us, too :)

I am so grateful that Buzz trusted my choice to have a home birth. I am grateful to my midwives, Jewel and Jennifer for everything they did for us. I am totally indebted to Tina and Jackie who were both indispensable and shared their love and support with me and our family. I am so proud to be the mama of two beautiful and amazing children. This whole pregnancy and birth were really wonderful and I just feel so blessed.

day one
Henry and Zibby
Henry, one day old

7 Responses to “The story of Henry’s Birth”

  1. Andrea on September 17, 2007 8:17 am

    Truly awesome. :) As in filled with awe.

  2. Roxanne on September 17, 2007 8:00 pm

    Beautiful birth story- thank you for sharing it. I’ve been reading your site for a while – this is my first comment. I love the picture of big sister Zibby holding Henry. She looks so happy. Sending love from New Jersey, Roxanne

  3. Cate on September 18, 2007 5:58 pm

    Absolutely wonderful! You are one amazing mom. Yow! Empowerment! What else can I say, but can’t wait to see you all soon!

  4. Renae on September 18, 2007 8:06 pm

    Congratulations! What a sweet baby boy!

  5. kim on September 19, 2007 9:26 am

    Wow Nancy, that sounds like a wonderful birth at home. I’m so happy you had all of that support and a beautiful experience. I had one wonky experience and one wonderful one like that, and whenever I smell lavender I fly 7 years back in time to the birth. It is great. Can’t wait to meet Henry, and yes Zibby does look so happy and proud.

  6. Jane on September 20, 2007 10:41 am

    Nancy! How absolutely wonderful. I’m thrilled for you. Thanks for sharing your birth story and for a wonderful blog. Its great having you to look up to! :) Hello baby Henry! And a big hug to all of you.


  7. Hilde on September 22, 2007 9:23 pm

    Yay! You rock! It’s such a joy to read your birth story.

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