A few months ago I received a phone call from a mom in another state. She was seeing midwives where she was living, but at 36 weeks her family would be moving to AZ. We discussed her options, like hospital, birth center or home birth; she decided she wanted a home birth. Her other three children were born in a birth center, and she really wanted a home birth this time, so I agreed to take her on. She called me when they started their trek across the country and checked in when they arrived in town.
Wednesday I did her first prenatal and all seemed well, except there was a glitch in her insurance. They would pay 100% where they came from, but here in AZ they wouldn’t pay hardly anything. (I just don’t understand insurance companies some time, actually most of the time).
She and her husband talked about the new insurance discovery, and decided to go to the hospital this time because of the finances. That night after making that decision, she was in GREAT turmoil, she didn’t sleep, she was on edge, and overall just couldn’t picture herself in the hospital.
The next afternoon (Saturday), she phoned me to see if I would still take her, she told me about her experience the night before, and just felt like she was supposed to have this baby at home. I agreed to take her. She said she had the best night sleep that night than she had had her whole pregnancy.
Monday around 3:15 PM she phoned and said she thought she was in labor. She was having contx, she hadn’t really been paying attention to how far apart they were, but she thought they were only about 20-30 minutes apart. She was just letting me know there was change, because I tell my clients when there is change call me. I told her to pay attention in the next hour to how close they really were, and if they were getting stronger, and call me back in one hour. I wanted time to call my birth team, and they had a ways to drive.
3:30 PM only 15 minutes later mom calls to say, “these are much closer than I thought, they were more like 4-5 minutes apart, and definitely stronger”. She has 3 other small children, and didn’t know anyone here in town as they have only been here a week, so I waited until Whitney (my daughter) got home from work, and brought her along with me to help with the other children. I called my birth team, and told them to be on their way, things were moving along quickly.
4:00 PM Mom is working very hard through these contx, she has a warm rice sock under her belly, this helps her relax through the with the contx. Every couple of minute’s mom bends over the bed, stops talking, and puts all her concentration and focus inward during a contx.
5:00 PM Mom decides to get in the tub to rinse off a bit and relax. She wasn’t quiet as comfortable in the tub as she was out walking around with her rice sock, so she got out after about 20 minutes, and that movement was definitely what she needed to get baby moving down. I listen to baby’s heart rate, and everything sounds GREAT! Mom is feeling lots of pressure; we can tell it won’t be much longer.
6:00 PM Mom’s water broke, and it was clear. I always check what color the amniotic fluid is because this gives a good indication of how baby is doing. When the water is stained, this means the baby has been stressed and pooped in utero. I listen to baby’s heart again to make sure it is still a happy baby, and the heart rate sounds GREAT! Mom is on her hands and knees on the bedroom floor, and has a strong urge to push. She gives a couple of slow gentle pushes and we soon see baby’s head. Dad is up by mom’s head encouraging her, and helping her focus. I put a little bit of helichrysm essential oil on mom’s perineum, to help lubricate, and keep the circulation going so she doesn’t tear. It is also good for bruising and swelling, if some gets on baby’s head, all the better, because of the molding that happens as baby comes down through the birth canal.6:10 PM We welcome a sweet baby boy into this family of girls! He weighed in at 7 pounds even and 20 inches long. Mom and dad were both so happy to have their baby here, three weeks early, but evidently it was perfect timing for him. They were especially glad to have this little one gently born in their home.