Here is my birth story from the arrival of Timothy. On the morning he was born, I woke up feeling a little disappointed that I still wasn’t in labour, as I was 16 days past my due date. Steve, my husband, went off to work as usual and my daughter Esta and I started our day. As we got up, I thought that perhaps my waters were leaking, they definitely hadn’t gone with a gush, but there was something going on. I called Cheryl my midwife who said I could go to hospital to be checked, but I was aware that they then might try to keep me in. I decided that I would wait an hour and see what was happening.
Esta and I went to our neighbours house so she could play with their children. I started feeling some twinges while we were there, but didn’t say anything as I wasn’t convinced it was contractions. About an hour later they were getting more regular and stronger so Esta and I came home. I called Cheryl who said she would set off straight away as she was an hour away. I also called Steve to come home from work and my sister to come and look after Esta. I then started pumping up the birth pool and getting things ready. Steve got home and took over preparations, as by now I was needing to concentrate on my contractions.
Cheryl arrived at about 11:30 am and suggested that we fill the pool as by now I was on all fours during contractions and breathing through them. At about 12:30 pm Cheryl asked if she could examine me to see if the second midwife should set off. She said I was about 4cm and progressing well. With my first labour, I still had hours to go at 4cm, so I just focussed on my breathing and assumed there was still a way to go. Just before 1 pm, my sister and Esta left so that she could have her nap at my parents house. Before she left, Esta gave me a rub on the back and was very sweet, saying ‘Well done, make the baby come’. When they’d left, the pool was ready so I got in and it was so blissful to be in the water. I was still on all-fours, leaning over the edge and swaying with each contraction, using my breathing and reminders from Cheryl to relax in between each contraction.
After I’d been in the pool about 15 minutes I had two really intense and long contractions with hardly a break in between. At this point I was feeling a bit overwhelmed and thinking that maybe a home birth wasn’t such a great idea! Looking back, I realise now that this was transition. I used my escalator breath to get me through and on my next contraction I felt an overwhelming urge to bear down. I thought it must be too soon as not long ago, I’d only been 4cm, but Cheryl said to just listen to what my body was telling me and go with it.
My waters broke as I was bearing down and when I felt down with the next push I could feel my baby’s head and something else, which turned out to be his hand! I was still using my breathing and making noise, just following my instincts and doing what my body wanted to do. I think I had about 2 or 3 more contractions bearing down and then suddenly Timothy was born! Cheryl let me scoop him up and bring him out of the water. He gave a little cry and started to pink up and within minutes he had latched on and was feeding. He was so calm and quiet, just looking at us with wide eyes – it was such a special moment. I stayed in the water cuddling and feeding Timothy until the cord stopped pulsing and then got out to deliver the placenta. Soon after we were all eating crumpets and drinking tea, enjoying being in the comfort of our own home with our new baby!
The birth was everything we wanted and more – the sensations I felt were powerful and overwhelming at times, but I never felt out of control. I couldn’t have done it without everything I’ve learnt from my Daisy Birthing classes and the wonderful support I received from Cheryl.