Ashley - posted on 11/06/2009 ( 4 moms have responded )
Isabella Lena Jo Wilson’s Birth Story
For nearly 2 weeks leading up to Isabella’s birth, I had been contracting on a regular basis. It was painful and annoying. They would keep me up at night and make sleeping impossible. I was tired and worn out.
The night before Isabella made her grand entrance into this world; I had been having contractions that were 4-6 minutes apart and lasting 45-60 seconds. This went on for nearly 2 hours, but as soon as I went and lay down in bed, they all but completely stopped. They dropped down to maybe 1 per hour, just enough to keep me from getting any good rest. By the next morning they’d completely stopped. I actually wrote out a big vent about the whole thing and how it was driving me absolutely batty… hahaha! Boy was I in for a surprise!
I went on with my daily activities, actually a little happy that I hadn’t gone into labor because not only was my daughter still sick, but my boys had both come into my bed running fevers and coughing that night. So, all 3 of them were sick, I had my hands full! All morning long, they had all done nothing but lie around and watch cartoons.
I did a little housework in between taking care of my kiddos and my frequent bathroom pit stops. I made some lunch, which no one but me ate, and got everyone comfy on the couch for a nap. At about 1:30, I made yet another bathroom stop and during so, I had a small gush. I wasn’t sure if it was my waters or just Bella moving around and pushing on my bladder, which wasn’t uncommon. I’d never experienced my water breaking on its own before, but I’d always read that if you’re unsure you should lay down for about 15 minutes and if there is a small gush when you sit or stand up then it’s more than likely ruptured membranes. So, that’s what I did, and sure enough, there was a gush.
I called Judith, my wonderful midwife, at around 1:45 and let her know that I thought that my waters had broken. She had me lay down one more time to make sure it was indeed my bag of waters and not just me peeing myself…lol! When I got up, I had that same gush. By then, I had also started having some contractions again. I called Judith back and told her about the gush and my contractions. She wanted me to rest for 15-30 minutes to see how the contractions reacted. I did what she said and they didn’t get any closer together, but they did get a little more intense. When I called her back to let her know, she said she was about 2.5 hours away (she had been on her way to see another client) and was turning around to head my direction. She wanted me to take it easy so things didn’t progress too quickly. I had no problem taking it easy.
I called my husband to let him know that we would soon be meeting out 4th child. He was thrilled and said he was on his way home. I called my best friend Stacy, my mom, and my Grammy Linda to let all of them know it was time!
By then, my contractions were about 5 minutes apart and lasting about 1 minute to 1 ½ minutes long and were becoming quite intense. I was quite during my contractions, concentrating on breathing through them and keeping my body relaxed. My kids were doing wonderful while I was laboring. My mother-in-law, Sue, and my husband, Matt, got to our house at about the same time. Sue got my kids dressed and their bags packed. She stuck around with me while Matt ran a few errands. She was such a big help during that time! She picked up my house, did some laundry, unloaded my dishwasher, and helped with the kids so I cold concentrate on my labor. I didn’t ever stay in one place for long. I went from room to room and from position to position. One contraction would be spent sitting on my bed, the next would be on my hands and knees in my living room, the next would be sitting Indian style on my floor, and the next would be in my kitchen leaning over the counters. I just went with the flow and did whatever was comfortable at the time.
While Matt was running his errands, my mother-in-law, my daughter, and I started blowing up the pool we were going to use for delivery. Justice was having a blast with the pump! My youngest, Tre` even gave it a try…lol! My contractions were getting more intense and I was starting to have some awful back labor. When Matt got home, he finished the job of blowing it up. I gave my kids hugs and kisses and off they went to the in-law’s house. We had planned on having them there for the delivery, but since they were all sick we decided it best for them to go spend the night with Gramma. Right after they left, my father-in-law came over to help my husband fill the pool up.
Around this time, my best friend, Stacy, showed up. She was so wonderful and such a help! She would apply counter pressure to my back during contractions, which made them SO much more tolerable. She really made things easier when she got there. There was someone to focus on me and me alone. Matt and his dad had got the hose hooked up to the washer connection and the water was flowing! They started bickering: was the water too hot, was it going to melt to pool, should they add ice, was the pool in a good spot… that sort of thing…lol!
At that point, my contractions had suddenly started coming one right after another. I had maybe 30 seconds in between each contraction and my body was starting to push involuntarily. I could feel the pressure of her head during each contraction.
I told Matt and his dad to forget about the pool because we weren’t going to have enough time. At that moment, Judith and her daughter Shae pulled into our drive. Judith came in, took one look at me, smiled, and said, “We’re going to have a baby.” She wanted me to lie down so she could check me, so slowly made my way to my side. She asked me if I could lie on my back, and I just couldn’t do it. I asked her if she could just do the internal with me lying on my side. She said it would be a little difficult, but she could do it (thank goodness because I really didn’t want to roll onto my back). As she checked me, she smiled and said we had about ½ inch before Isabella would be here! She gave us the go ahead to start pushing!
I was still lying on my side as I started pushing. With our first push, she crowned! Judith told me to reach down and feel my baby’s head! What a wonderful feeling!! I pushed again and she crowned again, but this time I held here there for about 30 seconds. It took a lot of control on my part and really, I’m not sure why I did it, but it felt right at the time. With our third push, her head was born!! Judith asked me to try to slow my pushing down, and my response was “I can’t help it! It’s not me, it’s my body!” I think I may have gotten a little snippy, but it was completely unintentional, so sorry Judith! After that, she said, “Then just go with it.” She was so calming. With our next push Isabella Lena Jo Wilson was born at 4:42 in the afternoon!!
Now, the things that happened next all happened so fast that I may not have them all in the right sequence.
Right after she came out, I rolled to my back and pulled her up on my chest. As I was doing this, I saw a spurt of blood and noticed that Bella was a purple color. Then I heard Judith. She didn’t quite yell, but the tone of her voice was very serious, “Clamp! Shae, I need a clamp!” That’s when I realized that the spurt of blood had come from Isabella’s umbilical cord! Judith had me lay her on the blanket next to me while she was pinching the umbilical cord. She put the clamps on the cord and told us that there was a true knot in the cord. She started rubbing Bella’s feet and talking to her. “C’mon pretty baby, breathe for me. C’mon, take a breath.” She gave her a breath and kept rubbing her and talking to her. She told me and Matt to do the same. I started stroking her head and telling her everything was going to be ok, and I truly felt that it would. Even though everything was so hectic, I felt so calm. Judith gave her another breath. I looked up at Matt and he looked absolutely terrified… his face was pale white, his eyes were wide and filled with tears, and he had his hand over his mouth. He later told me that he thought his worst dreams were coming true and that our baby was going to die right in front of him. Judith gave her another breath. Matt came down and held my hand and whispered “C’mon Bella, breath honey.” Judith gave her another breath. At this point, she was starting to at least try to breathe on her own. Shae had gotten the oxygen tank and tube ready and had me hold the tube up to Isabella’s face.
She was finally pinking up and breathing on her own! What a relief! Matt cut Isabella’s umbilical cord and walked me to our bed. Judith gave Bella some vitamin E, rescue remedy, and some liquid arnica then had me start trying to get her to nurse as much as possible. For the next hour or so, Judith came in to check on us every 10 minutes or so and we kept the oxygen tube in front of her face while she nursed on and off. By then, she was doing great!!!
During that time, Judith and Shae brought in the placenta to show us some pretty amazing things. First of all, there was a true knot in her cord. It was about an inch in front of her belly button. Then, right on the other side of the knot was a malformation in the gel of her cord. It was a hole, about the size of my pinky nail, which exposed the vessels. When I pulled her up on my chest, it put pressure on the vessel and it burst! After she was born, Judith and I talked about what had happened. She thinks that when she crowned and I held her there, the knot tightened and cut into her oxygen supply. So, the knot being there and tightening like it did saved Isabella’s life! The tightening slowed the blood flow and kept her from bleeding to death!! The entire center of the side that attaches to the uterus were dark and shadowy, which meant it wasn’t getting good blood flow, so it wasn’t functioning properly. So basically, our baby girl fought long and hard to get here: First, with the fact that I was using the Mirena IUD as a form of birth control when she was conceived, then with all the obstacles during her delivery and birth. She is truly a miracle that was sent to us from God. She was meant to be on this earth!
When she was about an hour old, she was weighed and measured, and had her hemoglobin checked. During her examination, Judith determined her to be 3 weeks early. She weighed in at 8lbs and 6oz, our lightest baby! She measured 20 3/4 inches long, our 2nd shortest baby (Koby was the shortest at 20 1/2 inches). And her hemoglobin was 18, which was a result of the early cord clamping, but still not at all bad. She did wonderful! Isabella went from having an APGAR score of 4 at one minute, to a 7-8 at 10 minutes, to a 9 at 15 minutes! Such a quick recovery!
Judith and Shae stayed at our house until around 8pm. Answering any questions or concerns we had. She left us with instructions to keep her swaddled and to check her temperature every couple of hours, nurse as often as possible, to keep an eye on her respiration. I loved having her stay as long as she did. It really showed us how important each client means to her
So all-in-all, even though nothing at all went like I had planned it… I didn’t get my water birth, I didn’t get to change into the nightgowns I had planned to wear during delivery, and there were a few complications… I had the ABSOLUTE BEST birth experience! Even though nothing went as planned, I didn’t feel gypped or disappointed or upset… it was absolutely perfect for me and my family!
The fact that I was able to snuggle up in my bed with my baby right after delivery was so wonderful. No one was coming in every hour to rub the top of my fundus, or to check my blood pressure, or to make sure I’m logging how often I’m nursing and changing my baby… My baby wasn’t taken away from me when a few complications happened, she wasn’t poked with and probed, no goop was shoved in her eyes after birth, she wasn’t taking away to the nursery to be weighed and measured and bathed… we were both able to snuggle up and be comfortable in our own home; everything was better than I could have ever imagined. Not only did I have the perfect birth experience for me, but I met two of the most amazing women ever! Thank you Judith and Shae, you made our perfect home delivery possible!!