Welcome Baby M. T.!
Friday, June 24 was an exciting day! I received a call from my dear friend, who was well past her due date, excited that she thought it was the big day! She had been having contractions for several weeks (she was nearly 2 weeks past her due date!), but since about 3 am she’d had one about every ten minutes. This doesn’t sound like much according to “normal” laboring standards, but for this experienced Mom, it was right on target for her!
We agreed to meet at the birth center at about 10 am where she would be checked by the midwife. Mom was discouraged to hear she was only a four, so the three of us plus Dad discussed ways we could get labor moving. Since the midwife was helping another Mom in labor, we were welcomed to stay at the birth center even though Mom hadn’t been “admitted” at this point.We cruised the parking lot, tried a few different positions, and after another check by the midwife confirming she hadn’t progressed much, we left for the mall to walk around in the air conditioner and eat lunch.
Things still seemed to be moving slowly, and I could tell that although Mom was a little discouraged, Dad was confident that this was completely normal for Mom and that things would pick up shortly!
After heading back to the birth center and another check, Mom and Dad decided to lay down to rest since, despite the fact that Mom was still contracting every 10 minutes or so, she still hadn’t progressed much. The midwife and birth assistant (who were still there for another birth) told me to go home, and that they’d call me if things started moving. I wasn’t completely comfortable with this for several reasons… Mom was trying to nap so she said she didn’t need me, but I also didn’t want to leave because I thought it meant that this birth wouldn’t count toward my DONA training. But, this day also happened to be my youngest son’s first birthday, and since the midwife advised me to leave I decided to go home to be with my family and celebrate his birthday!
I kept in contact with Mom via phone and text, and found out later that they’d been sent home by the midwife around dinner time. Mom wasn’t progressing.
I got a call at 11:50 pm from Dad, this time things sounded a bit different. He said Mom was contracting every several minutes, was really working hard, and that they were planning to be at the birth center at 1 am. I got myself ready to go, and got a text around 12:40 saying they were already there and that she was a 7… a few minutes later I got another text saying her water had broken. I had a hunch things would go quickly once Mom started progressing but I didn’t realize it would go this quickly!
I arrived at about 12:55 am to find Mom working very hard, mostly relying on Dad. She was clearly in transition already, experiencing doubt in herself and saying that she couldn’t do this. But she was doing it, and she was doing it beautifully! We could all tell that this baby was coming soon, so we helped her in the birth tub and she immediately started pushing. Only, this Mom was amazing. She didn’t really push, she just breathed this baby right out! I know she was working hard but she truly made this second stage of labor look like a piece of cake!
I supported the back of Mom’s neck and held her hand while she delivered a 9 lb 13 oz beautiful baby girl, and Dad “caught” her and placed her on Mom’s chest. M. T. was perfect, a very quiet girl who I personally think wasn’t sure that she’d even been born! She rested quietly on Mom’s chest while we all admired her, and perked up after hearing a few minutes of beautiful love words spoken from Mom and Dad.
The midwife, birth assistant, and I were all pretty amazed at how the day had progressed. Mom labored for almost 20 hours with short contractions, 10 minutes apart, and was fairly comfortable the entire day. Once things picked up, she went from transition to delivering a baby within a matter of 20 minutes!
I am so thankful that my sweet friend asked me to attend her precious daughter’s birth, and even though I feel sure this one won’t “count,” it’s an experience that I won’t soon forget! Another beautiful baby in the world!