Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Conor: A Birth Story - Part 3: It was all worth it

At this point I was at 8.5-9 centimeters my waters had still not broken. The midwife had suggested several times that she break them in order to help the labor to progress, but I had rejected the idea outright because she said that it would probably make the contractions more intense, which I didn't think I could handle. But there came a point where I thought that labor would never end unless something changed, and I HAD TO MAKE IT END. So I told her to break the bag of waters, but then Nemo wouldn't let her. You see, it was his job to make sure that I stuck to my natural birth plan and that I didn't make any rash decisions that I would later regret. The plan included that my waters should not be broken, but I meant that they shouldn't be broken in order to start labor. We were already well past that point. It took me a while to explain that coherently, but in the end I got my way and things started to progress more rapidly after that.

It was at about 1:30am on Sunday, June 26 when the midwife, Emily, announced that I was ready to push. I asked her how long it was going to be, and she gently told me that for first time mothers, the pushing stage can last for hours. HOURS. I almost broke down. I know I said "I can't do this" several times. I may have cussed.

Nemo got behind me on the bed and supported me while I grabbed onto the towel wrapped around the bar at the end of the bed. Nemo counted in my ear while I pushed like my life depended on it. They didn't suggest any other positions to me, and I think that is because they knew how long I had been at it and I was way too tired to do any squatting positions. Reclining was about all I could handle.

Emily had another mother in labor, and was dashing in and out trying to attend to both of us. I lost track of when she as there and when she wasn't because I was so focused. I didn't know how long I had been pushing when the nurse told me to stop. I was a bit flustered, until I deduced that things were probably coming to a head (pun intended) and Emily wasn't there. They paged Emily while I tried not to push. She came running in a short time later, pulling on gloves as she hurried towards the bed. She sat down at the foot of the bed and after checking me out she looked me right in the eye and told me to grab the backs of my thighs and push for all I was worth.

It wasn't very long, maybe two or three pushes, before my baby was born. I couldn't see him and he was very quiet, but they assured me that he was fine. Nemo and I started crying happy tears. A moment later they put the baby on my chest and I cuddled him for the first time. I laughed to myself because I saw immediately that he had Nemo's feet.

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