***Updated with photos***
June 24th... was a Lifetime TV moment. Everything happened in such a brief span of time. I guess I'll just tell it like it is even though you probably won't believe me. At 6:45 am, I woke up to my water breaking...err...gushing. This made me mad because I knew we had to go to the hospital right away and that they would probably administer pitocin to "progress" me. Why was I so sure? Well, because I labored 32 hours with Maia, I figured I had at least a quarter of that time with this one. I woke up Christina and we woke up the girls to get them ready to drop off at my friend Liz's house. I felt my first contraction about 20 minutes after my water broke, but nothing too strong. 10 minutes later the next one hit. Maybe I wouldn't be forced to have pitocin after all! Another 10 minutes, then 9, another 9, 8, 8, 8... During the contractions I wanted to eat breakfast for a little strength at the hospital since they won't let you eat while you're in labor and I was expecting to be there for quite some time.
By 7:50 we had everything lined up at the door. Just before we were loading up kiddos, I had to go to the bathroom one more time. As I was walking to the bathroom, I started having another contraction with an urge to push. I was able to breathe through it but the sensation was so strong. As I was going to the bathroom I felt her coming without any pushing and there was no stopping her. From that point, I yelled in a panic to Christina to call 911. I slid off of the commode, onto my knees and her head was out! Terrified that I was going to deliver a stillborn baby at this point, I felt around her head and neck for the umbilical cord to make sure it wasn't around her neck. With the next contraction, she was completely out (approx. 8:05am). I caught my own baby! Was this all really happening? I could hear Christina on the phone with the operator telling them that the baby had been born. The baby was just looking around, not crying so I wanted to hear her lungs. Christina brought a few towels down in her super-fast acting so I started rubbing her with one of the towels to get her to cry (that's what we did with newborn puppies at the vet clinic). Hearing her little gurgly cries gave me that reassurance I needed. I swiped my finger through her mouth to try to clear what fluid I could from her mouth.
Aftermath-- Thank you, Christina for taking this and for cleaning up my mess. :)
Next thing I know, the EMTs are at the door ready to take us to the hospital. I climbed onto the gurney and they handed Liberty to me. I think the EMTs were a little surprised at how much energy I had (maybe even annoyed by my babbling) but they were very kind and laughed along with me (or at me). As they wheeled me down the driveway, I saw that they weren't alone. The ambulance was joined by a firetruck and police car. What do you think the neighbors were thinking? They wheeled us into the ambulance, with the placenta bagged and at my feet. I heard them call out a 9 for her APGAR score from when they entered the house and was just thrilled. :) As we rolled away from the house, they started up the siren and I had to laugh. That was about the end of the fun once we arrived at the hospital (they did take me to IACH).
Inside the ambulance -- placenta isn't at my feet just yet
At least the nurses didn't fight me when I refused the e-mycin ointment for Liberty's eyes. In all honesty, I liked all but one of the nurses, who decided to take it upon herself to knead my stomach while the midwife was stitching my tear...without using local anesthesia. At least the midwife got after the nurse and asked me again if I wanted the lydicaine. She reassured me that none would be passed through breastmilk so I gladly accepted. It was still a little tough convincing them that I didn't need pitocin to contract my uterus but I was determined to change their thinking. Sure wish I convince these people that while medical intervention has its place, it's better to allow our bodies to do what is natural, like not interfering with my body's ability to produce oxytocin. The only other problem I had was trying to sleep on the incredibly uncomfortable bed that was like trying to sleep on 3 or 4 folded up plastic tarps for "softness." The pillows were the same. I really thought about sleeping on the floor or on the fold-down bench in the shower. While giving birth in the bathroom may not have been the ideal setting, I am thankful for an uncomplicated pregnancy/birth, not having to deliver at the hospital but most of all a healthy baby girl, happy family Rob (Daddy), we felt you there with us. Missing you and can't wait for our family to be physically whole for a couple of weeks in August! We three love thee!
Talking to Rob in Iraq for the first time since Liberty's birth