Kaylee was prepared for a long haul labor just like her first, but in some cases those second babies don’t mess around!
“I was doing ALL of the prep the last few weeks of pregnancy: red raspberry leaf tea, dates, breathing techniques, going through the Pain Free Birth course – you name it, I was doing it! I was determined to be consistent with it all to hopefully reap the benefits and have a smoother (maybe even shorter) labor as a result of my diligence in these small things. I did experience light cramping for a few weeks building up to my due date, but nothing more. I was slightly discouraged thinking that maybe my prep wasn’t doing anything for me since I wasn’t experiencing any prodromal labor – boy, was I wrong!
Sunday night around 10pm I started to cramp. I woke up the next morning (41 weeks) and noticed some bloody show. YAY!
At 1pm I had my first noticeable contractions, 7 minutes apart. We called my doula and she recommended I get in the bathtub to see if contractions would space out or continue with the consistency. Contractions shifted to 3 minutes apart and lasted 60-90 seconds.
My husband asked if I wanted to call the midwife and I said, ‘Well, it hasn’t even been an hour yet, I don’t want to bother her.’ He recommended we call anyway and it’s a good thing he did!
While on the phone with my midwife, contractions lasted over 2 minutes with only 30-40 second breaks in between! They were strong but manageable (the worst part was just having such short rest periods between!). The midwife said she would stop by to check on me. Then we called our doula back and asked her to come over.
By now I was having to vocalize to cope through contractions. Thank goodness the PFB course taught me what kinds of sounds to make and how to control my breathing! Deep down I knew that contractions don’t last this long unless you are in transition, but I had barely been laboring for an hour, and I just thought there was no way I could possibly already be that far along. This actually worked to my advantage because I kept telling myself I had to keep my crap together since there were still multiple hours of labor ahead, and it was only going to get worse!
Right after the midwife showed up I felt a big shift in my pelvis and naturally started bearing down during contractions. It felt so good and productive to be able to do something more than just focus on my breathing. I was very vocal and primal during pushing, which I never expected myself to be!
I was still in denial that I could actually be this far, so I wasn’t sure if I was truly feeling the FER or not. After a while, I worked up the courage to ask my midwife how far she thought I was. She responded, ‘Oh honey, you’re pushing. Why don’t you see if you can feel the baby?’ I hesitantly went for it, expecting to be disappointed. However, just the opposite happened. Her head was about an inch from coming out!
I had a shift here. I had been doing well before, but now I got to fully accept that we really were almost done. I had successfully made it through transition, I really was bearing down, and my baby was almost here!
I gladly welcomed the ring of fire and continued to bear down during contractions. After around 45 minutes since the start of bearing down, I switched positions and the baby’s head came out. In the next contraction her body came out into the tub. I got to be the one to catch her and the first one to touch her!
I immediately came out of ‘labor land’ and couldn’t believe I was really holding my baby. It had been just over 3 hours since that first contraction.
My labor and birth wasn’t what I expected it to be: I didn’t use the birth pool we had already inflated, didn’t use any early active labor coping mechanisms I had planned on, etc. But it was AMAZING and everything I didn’t know I needed. Birthing in the bathtub was never the plan, but I am so grateful for the way it all played out.
I can honestly say it was a pain-free experience – intense and full of pressure, yes, but pain-free! I owe so much of that to the PFB course. I never would have even dreamed of that being an option had I not come across Karen’s account and course!”
Learn the Pain Free Birth© techniques Kaylee used to overcome fear, master pain, and experience a blissful birth. I promise you, birth can be SO much better than you’ve been told!