On the evening of October 30th, I began my labor with our fourth child, but because I absolutely refused to give birth on Halloween the labor stopped! Now it is two weeks later at 7:30pm on November 14th. I had just put the kids to bed, telling them Baby was going to be born soon. Contractions aren’t any less random, but I intuitively know it’s time.
The kitchen, bathrooms and floors are cleaned again, and I wrap up my business to-dos. I text my husband to find some one to cover for him tomorrow because contractions are 10 minutes apart. No, don’t rush home – yet. Because of the false start I had two weeks ago, I only called my midwife.
At 11:30pm, I call my husband to get home soon. I don’t know how fast things are going to progress. My last labor was just 3 hours, and we ended up delivering the baby alone. So, I decide to wake up my midwife at midnight and apologetically ask her to come hang out for a few hours.
Not dilated yet. Acupuncture is given. Thankfully, I am mentally prepared for this nine hour labor. I ready a crock-pot of ginger root compresses and olive oil. Still 10 minutes apart, but too painful to sleep.
4:00am, things kick up a notch. I get into the shower for relief. Dim lights, doing the ami with the hot water on my back, I don’t want to get out! I move into the pool; the water carries my weight, lifting the pain; my head rests on a pillow.
Draped over the birth ball, rocking; my husband pressing down on my back with each wave washing over my belly – no, more like crashing and pounding waves. I am 6cm and don’t want to talk.
At 4:30am, I start crying: transition! I don’t want to do this. I quit. Strong resolve rises within to accomplish what my body was created to do. I surrender to the inevitable.
At 5:30am I feel a violent double kick from Baby, strong and purposeful. I don’t have time to consider its meaning because a very strong contraction follows quickly. Without understanding why, but knowing I have to, I go into the bathroom instead of into the pool as planned and use the counter for support. All urge me to get into the water, but I am adamant about standing.
First push: waters break. Second push: a squirt of something sticky? I feel something swelling my entire pelvic floor. I quickly cancel out being torn front to back by a huge baby. Third push: Baby slides out fast, folded in half, bum first! Miraculously, no tearing! I’m positive the olive oil and ginger compresses did their job, but I also know the standing squat I delivered in was perfect for his presentation.
So, does a breech birth hurt more? I get asked this a lot. My first was posterior with fist next to face, the second presented by the book, the third came out “running” as a footling breech. Honestly, healing from this frank breech birth was the quickest of all four!