The Homebirth of Lawson Huck

The Birth Story of Bret Isaiah

Our little son was due to be born on October 3rd, although all throughout my pregnancy I thought I was going to meet him early (ha ha).  October 3rd came and went with my usual Braxton hick’s contractions but not much else.  I went into Cindi’s office on the 4th for an appointment thinking that I would get my membranes stretched and swept to get things rolling, but they decided that it would be better to wait since another mom had it done earlier that day; they wanted to avoid 2 moms in labor at the same time.  I went home sort of disappointed but trusting that everything would happen when it was supposed to.

Two days later I went in again, this time with Paul.  Cindi checked me and I was already dilated to a solid three.  She said that everything was nice and ready, so she went ahead and did the stretch and sweep.  I started having some contractions right away.  That night I expected to go into labor, so Paul and I took a nap so that we could be ready for whatever happened… which turned out to be nothingJ.  Cindi called me Friday morning a bit surprised that we hadn’t needed her during the night, and invited me to come into the office again for another stretch and sweep.  I called Paul at work to tell him I was going to go in.  I thought it was pretty funny every time I called him at work he tried to sound like he wasn’t beyond excited with the thought that things might be getting started, so I began every conversation with, “Hey, I’m not going into labor.”At Cindi’s office when she checked me again she said I was a solid five centimeters already, and she stretched me to six centimeters.  I was tired of sitting around waiting for things to get started, so I called my friend Anna and asked her out to coffee.  During our visit my contractions were pretty regular, and I was excited to see things moving along.  It was Friday the 7th, and that seemed like the perfect day for our son to be born.  I got an email from Paul telling me that people at work sent him home early, and he was waiting there for me.At home Paul helped me as my labor progressed.  Cindi would call periodically to see how I was doing and if we wanted her to come over.  Eventually I got some pretty intense shivers and started to vomit; we let Cindi know, and she and Jessica came on over.A lot of what happened on Friday is not very clear in my mind.  I know that Jessica and Cindi came over; sometime after that the rest of the birth team arrived.  Brittany and Chelsea were going to assist and Nicole was ready to take pictures.  Someone filled the birth pool, and I got in for a while.  All I really remember was the atmosphere.  It felt like a bizarre slumber party.  I tried to settle back into my labor, but sometime later (Cindi and Chelsea were asleep, and I think Paul laid down for a nap too) my contractions stopped.  Jessica suggested a little walk to see if things would pick up again, so the four of us still awake headed out on a midnight stroll (it was actually closer to 2am).  When we got back, with no new contractions, Jessica checked my progress.  After around 13 hours I had dilated one centimeter.I was pretty discouraged, but we decided that if my body was going to give me a rest I might as well take advantage of it.  The new plan was this: I would lie down and try to get some rest, and everyone else would go home and do the same.  Paul lay down next to me and prayed with me and rubbed my back helping me to relax, and after a little cry I did eventually fall asleep.

I woke up around 10am to my contractions starting up again.  I went into the living room to try and let Paul get some more sleep, and see if I could rest any more on the couch.  That didn’t really work because the contractions were nice and strong.  Paul woke up when I started to feel nauseated again, and I made good use of our vomit bowl all day.  I knew that having my labor really rock right away was a good thing, because that’s what my body needed to move forward, but I started to get pretty discouraged.  I had worked so hard the day before with so little progress that I was afraid I was going to go through the same thing again- for nothing.  I know now that I wasn’t working for nothing.  I was working to meet my son, and I was working to become a mother.

Cindi called to check on me, and see how everything was going.  I let her know that the contractions were good and consistent.  She said that the birth team would be out and about all day doing home visits and they would come by around six pm, unless I needed them sooner.  I don’t know if having that time in my mind was helpful or not, but suddenly I couldn’t wait for it to be six.  I was so tired of not being able to keep anything down, and I started worrying that I would run out of energy when it came time to push our baby out.

My contractions were pretty intense, and I stopped remembering how to take breaks in between.  Paul was wonderful throughout all of this.  He kept himself calm, and reminded me to work with the contractions.  He would offer me sips of ice cold Gatorade, do counter pressure on my back, fan me when I was too hot, and make sure the barf bowl was nearby.

Between 4:30 and 5:00 I think I asked Paul what time it was 15 times.  I felt like 6pm was never going to get there, and I needed my birth team.  I asked Paul to call Cindi, and ask her when she was going to stop by.  I don’t know why I didn’t just tell him to ask her to comeJ.  She asked Paul if we needed them; I could hear her through the phone.  I started crying a little bit and nodded to Paul to have them head over.

It was a different team that arrived, and I think the atmosphere was a lot more down to business.  Where Friday the house felt like a weird type of slumber party Saturday felt like someone was going to have a baby, and that someone was me!  Cindi and Jessica were there again, Shay was assisting, and Nicole (our photographer) arrived a bit later.  All the equipment got set up somehow, and someone worked on draining some of the cool water from the birth pool and adding fresh hot water in case I wanted to use it.

My contractions didn’t really waver even with everyone’s arrival, and Cindi was able to get me to take my breaks in between contractions again.  During each contraction I had been leaning over and resting my upper body on the nearest surface while rocking my hips, and I tried to keep my voice calm and low.  I kept saying, “oh” slowly.  Cindi encouraged me to try saying, “yes” instead because my “oh’s” sounded like “no’s”.  Saying yes over and over sounded like someone having a super long orgasm to me though, so I settled for variations on, “alright, ok, and umm-hmm”.  Sometimes they came out almost like a question, which I thought was sort of funny.

At some point Jessica checked me and told me I was dilated to nine centimeters.  She said that I was almost complete, and I could try bearing down with a few contractions to see how it felt.  She said I would know when it was time to push.  During pregnancy one of the things that I was apprehensive about concerning labor was pushing.  I had read so many birth stories in preparation for Bret’s birth; some women LOVED pushing, but others DID NOT.  What if I got to the second stage of labor and I was a part of that second group.  It’s not like you can just stop having a baby; you have to push it out!  I tried bearing down in a variety of places and positions.  It didn’t feel awful, but it didn’t feel right either, probably because it wasn’t quite time yet.

At this point I was feeling much better.  All the work that I had put in during the day had been effective!  I was going to have this baby soon!  I think the support of the team added to Paul’s really made a difference.  I knew that those women had seen lots of labors before mine, and if they said I was doing everything right I believed them!

Cindi asked me if I could try bearing down with a few contractions on the toilet, so we moved into the master bathroom to give it a go.  It was SO HOT in there to me!  Cindi found a big plastic Sterilite lid and fanned me with it while Paul stepped out to get something to eat.  That felt great.  I gave a few trial pushes on my toilet, where I had spent so much time in the last few months with my nightly pee trips.  My water broke right when Paul stepped back in the room.  It gushed into my sweet toilet!  (Toilet’s are perfect for holding water)  I saw that the water wasn’t clear, and I asked if that was ok.  Was Bret alright?  Jessica told me that they expect to see that with women who have gone over 40 weeks, and she reassured me that they had all their special equipment ready if they needed it.

I asked if I could get into the tub, and Shay told me that it was ready for me if I wanted to.  I did.  I climbed into that gigantic cushy tub, and the water felt so good.  I got to relax for a minute until suddenly the urge to push struck me.  I was so happy!  I was excited to push!  I reached up to see if I could feel his head yet, and I felt something squishy.  I asked Jessica to come feel and make sure that what I felt wasn’t his cord coming first.  It wasn’tJ.  So I pushed in the pool.  I announced to everyone that he felt like a giant turd, and Nicole told me that later in his life he might act like a giant turd too.

I felt like I had some control over what was happening now, and I loved it.  With each contraction I roared like… something that roars, and I felt Bret’s head move down with each push.  Jessica kept listening to Bret’s heart to make sure he was handling everything ok.  He was doing great.  I don’t remember who brought up perennial support, but I decided to get out of the tub to finish pushing.

I climbed out and kneeled next to my birth ball while resting my head on it and holding on tight.  I pushed like that until right before he was born when I lifted one leg into a squat position.  I could feel his head stretching everything it was supposed to, and tearing some things it wasn’t.

Then at 8:53 pm he was born.  Jessica handed my tiny boy to me through my legs, and I held him to my tummy.  He was perfect.  He looked around and at me with huge eyes, and whimpered a watery cry saying hello.  Paul was crying in amazement, and I felt like my face was going to be pulled apart from the giant smile on it.  Our sweet boy was perfect!  God had worked everything for good, and we had been a part of a miracle.

Jessica warned me to be careful not to pull him too much because he had a super short chord (13 inches), so he stayed nuzzled to my stomach instead of my breast while we walked to the bedroom to get cozy in our bed.  Our team got Paul, Bret and I all tucked in and retreated out to the living room to give us our fist family time together.  I think that I will cherish those moments forever.  Both of my men snuggled close to me, and I felt so loved and so powerful.  If this is the reward for twenty plus hours of labor I would gladly do it again.

Bret Isaiah in Pictures


The Birth Story of William Edward

How I got here.

My pregnancy had progressed as planned. Well, mostly! I was low risk, my son was head down, I kept up with exercising and eating (relatively) healthy. I had passed all of the blood tests and met all of the requirements to have my dream home birth.

Why a home birth? To put it simply… I don’t believe birth requires medical intervention. That IS a blanket statement, and I fully admit that. There are births that DO require this kind of care. However, I believe that number to be very small. And the upswing of interventions in westernized culture is, I believe, a result of the medical community’s need for control, predictability, and convenience.

Strictly speaking, I did not want any interventions. Yes, that meant I was submitting myself to “pain”. But birth is meant to be intense. That “pain” serves a purpose. And much of it can be mitigated by simply doing what is natural. When Daniel and I decided to get pregnant, I had already explored the idea of home birth. I knew a few women who had either had or attempted home birth, and their stories were inspiring and empowering. I wanted that. I wanted everything that a natural birth offered. A healthy start to my emotional bond with my child, a positive birth experience, the comfort of my own home, and an environment where fear wasn’t the sole motivator for interference with a process that nature has perfected. However, we had our doubts. Any normal person would. I mean, births happen in hospitals for a reason, right? Well… yes. But those reasons aren’t generally a result of necessity. So Daniel and I set up our pre-conception appointment with Cindi Denbow, certified nurse-midwife, and owner of Gentle Birth Options, out of Niceville. She threw the book at us. It was a pretty heavy book, too. It hurt 😉 Daniel, more skeptical than I was, left completely confident in our newly formed decision to home birth. We were even excited!

Previous to my birth, saying all of the above felt kind of hollow. That’s because I’m a first time mom, and no matter how much I say what I believe, until I had experienced it, it was never quite real.

The birth.

Transformers. It all started with Transformers! Or should I say, the beginning of the end started with Transformers 😉

That Thursday morning I had had an appointment with Cindi. The week before she had checked me and told me I was only 50% effaced and not dilated at all. I had been pretty bummed, because I was so tired of pregnancy and ready to meet my little boy. So I was hoping for good news… and I got it! I was 1cm dilated! WOO HOO! Progress! She stretched my membranes a bit and sent me on my happy way. We had no idea when labor would begin… but it was a start, right? I and three other moms were all eagerly awaiting to meet our children with Cindi’s help over the next few weeks. While at the appointment, I found out that one of those other mom’s water had broken that morning. While excited for her, I couldn’t suppress that small twinge of jealousy. Oh well, I’d meet him soon enough.

I then went to get adjusted at Health Source Chiropractic. I would have seen Sarah that day, but she was under the weather, so I saw her husband Shawn. Being as pregnant as I was, I was dismayed when he told me the center of the table didn’t drop down any further to leave room for my belly. I thought to myself that this pregnancy better end soon, or my chiropractic care was going to suffer! Adjusted and happy, Daniel drove me home around 4:00pm.

We then got a text from our friend Dougy, telling us he wouldn’t be able to make the movie we had all planned to see that night because he was sick. We had been taking every opportunity to see movies that we could. Afterall, we’d have a newborn soon, and that meant less husband/wife time out of the house! At least in the beginning. So at 9:00pm we were going to enjoy the predictable, yet totally worth it, explosions and crazy camera angles of Michael Bay at the local Crestview theater. I had been whining about the time, because it was late. But our friend Dougy could only make that time and our other friends, Nathan and Jacob, insisted on seeing it in 3D. So preggo exhausted me gave in. Men will be men. However, after receiving the text from Doug, we then realized we could go to the 5:45 showing instead! Woo hoo! Sleep! So we SOMEHOW successfully coordinated the quick change of plans for everyone and made it home in time to catch the show.

That’s when things started to go a little… funny. I had been having frequent Braxton Hicks all day… but that was no new occurrence. They had plagued me my entire third trimester. As always, I ignored them. Well, ignored them as often as I could without running to the bathroom for fear of peeing myself due to the extra uterine pressure 😉 But in the movie that night my tailbone started to ache. And I mean… ACHE. I hadn’t felt pain like that since I fell on my grandmothers porch when I was 11 and bruised my hind end. I hadn’t felt tailbone pain once in my pregnancy. I couldn’t find anything about sacrum pain pointing to early labor, so I just assumed I had done too much sitting. PS, don’t sit in the middle of the middle aisle at a movie theater when you’re 39 weeks pregnant. The snooty couple at the end WILL judge you when you have to pee and shove your ginormous stomach in their faces. I mean, COME ON!

The movie was excellent. I didn’t shed a tear this time. GO ME! Probably because I was concentrating on the relatively intense pain in my arse instead. We went home, and finally gave in to my urge to pre-watch the next week’s episode of True Blood on HBO Go. We cleverly set up the iPad on a spare Amazon shipping box (who needs fancy stands…) and snuggle on the couch to enjoy. About 35 minutes into the episode, or around 10:30 pm, we both hear and feel a “pop”. Daniel’s hand had been resting on my ever so large stomach, and the sound we felt/heard might sound similar to when you pop your shoulder socket. He didn’t acknowledge it, and I had a sinking feeling I knew what had just happened, so I said “Dear, help me up, I’ve got to use the restroom.”

I stand up and… nothing. Hmm. Maybe I was wrong? I go and sit on the toilet and sure enough… GUSH! Thank goodness I had sense enough to go to the restroom! I thought that was it. I mean, for the volume… you’d think that would HAVE to be it. So I get up and walk in the living room and calmly say to Daniel “I think my water just broke.” I get that blank stare and “What?” By this point I’m shaking, and dripping all over the floor, because despite my conclusion that I had drained all there was to be drained… I hadn’t. I call Cindi, who I’m sure heard the fear in my voice, to tell her. My voice is shaking as I tell her the details. There was light cramping immediately after my water broke, which was when I called her. She told me that she was with another mom who was in labor (the mom whose water had broken that morning while I saw Cindi in her office) and that I was going to have a long day tomorrow laboring, so I needed to rest and try to sleep between my mild contractions.

I did as I was bid, and laid down in bed to rest between contractions. Five minutes of that and I knew that wasn’t happening. By the time I had hung up the phone and followed her instructions, my contractions were about three minutes apart, and I couldn’t talk through them. Daniel was frantically following my instructions to set up our supplies and blow up the pool, but he’d drop everything the moment a contraction came to come and hold my hand and talk me through it.

We had not expected it to happen so soon at such a late hour. Why? I’m not really sure. Denial that birth would ever happen, probably. I had Daniel text Cindi to tell her that there would be no sleeping, and that I could not longer talk through my contractions. Soon after (maybe 15 minutes?) I could barely breathe through them. I got in the tub and attempted slow, methodical breathing. I made a lot of noise in these pitiful attempts. A lot of “Oh’s” and not the good kind either.

You have to realize how I felt in this moment. The average time of labor for a first time mom having a natural birth is 24 hours. Twenty. Four. Hours. That’s what I imagined I was in for. That’s what Cindi imagined I was in for. So when Daniel continued to update her on my progress, and she heard my attempts to breathe through contractions, she sent out reinforcements!! GBO’s birth assistant, Carnley, soon arrived to check on me. Cindi remained with the other mother in labor. Carnley was there to help me labor, check on my progress, and keep Cindi in the know. Because Daniel and I were completely new at this, and it wouldn’t have been the first time (I’m sure) for a first time mom to exaggerate her progress. Not that Cindi thought I had, but with two mom’s in labor, she had to be sure! Carnley called Cindi shortly after arriving to let her know that my contractions were right on top of each other and that she may want to head over.

So about an hour later, Cindi and the entire team arrived. Two mom’s had never labored at the same time before in GBO’s history. Cindi only takes on 5 clients a month to prevent it from happening. Well, it happened! Mom no. 1 needed some relaxation to help her progression, so I got two labor teams that night! Cindi, Shay, Carnley, Brittany, Nicole (my photographer) and Michelle all arrived and began their practiced and perfected setup for a birth. I wasn’t even aware of what was going on because my contractions were too intense. I’d open my eyes long enough to see a face and mutter an agreement or dissent, and then get back to laboring.They were angels. At every turn from beginning to end I had someone talking me through my contractions. Whether every single instruction was strictly necessary or simply existed to distract me, I have no idea. I labored quite a bit on the toilet (smexy. I know.) I got a lot of “knees apart, toes forward, try to breathe without all of the noise, in through your nose out through your mouth, slow down your breathing, drop your shoulders”. Occasionally, they would have me change positions. I didn’t exactly love this, because the first contraction in a new position was always ridiculously intense. Or sometimes I’d get caught in a contraction while I was standing up, and considering the intensity made me dizzy, I wasn’t happy about those instances! I’d lay down on my side, sit on my birthing (yoga) ball, go back to the toilet, rinse and repeat. At some point, Cindi checked my cervix. I was 4cm. Ugh. All that and only four centimeters? Everything was a blur, and I couldn’t tell you who was touching me when throughout the night. All I know is that it helped, and they helped, and their encouragement always quelled the ever persistent self-doubt that kept creeping into my mind. If this was early labor, then how was I going to make it through transition?

After a few hours of this, my chiropractor Sarah showed up. She set up her table to adjust me. After working through a few close waves of contractions, we attempted an adjustment. I can’t tell you whether or not it helped, to be honest, because shortly after I entered into transition. I knew, because it was the first time I had exclaimed “I can’t!” when given an instruction. With transition began back labor. Sarah and Shay’s hands were magic. After my adjustment, the pool was finally ready, so I attempted laboring in the water. It definitely helped. I honestly cannot remember why I even got out of the pool. Probably to use the restroom. All I know is that, soon after, I was sitting on the toilet, and I had an undeniable urge to push. For the men out there or women who haven’t had children… it feels like you have to poop. You’re welcome for sharing. So with a growl and a grunt, I pushed for the first time.

Everyone had been resting in the living except for Cindi and Daniel. All it took was the first “sound” of pushing for them to rush back into the room and get everything prepared. Cindi asked to check me again, to make sure I wasn’t pushing through 5cm and that I truly had dilated enough to delivery. I was 10 cm. It took her only a second to figure that out! The relief I felt upon her confirmation of my progress is indescribable.

I pushed for a few minutes in the pool, but Cindi preferred me out of the pool for delivery, since I was a first time mom and she wanted to help with perineal massaging to prevent tearing. So I got on the bed and we got down to business. This was the clearest part of labor for me. They’d give me instructions, and I’d peep a “Yes ma’am” on an exhale and follow. I did a bit of screaming, I’m not going to lie. And by a bit, I mean my throat was sore the next day. They instructed me to take that energy and put it into my push. It helped tremendously. Cindi checked my son’s heart rate after every pushing session. He was doing swimmingly!

After 25 minutes of pulling my knees to my chest and pushing with all my might I heard “one more push and we’ll have the head!”. Sure enough *grunt* and out was his head! I was still in the zone and Cindi instructed me to push ONE more time. So I did. And in a second my son was on my chest, wailing. I was in shock. Shock because I had never done ANY version of birth before. This little person we had been dreaming about for months was here on my chest. Crying and wiggling and OURS. I loved him so much. He was beautiful. I had done it .6 and 1/2 hours later… I had done it.

He was born 6 lbs 15 oz and 21 inches long. He was born with a true knot in his cord. He was my little hero.

A moment that stood out to me was when I was close to hyperventilating during the pushing stage (a flare for drama runs in my family…) and Michelle was on the bed face to face with me telling me I could do it and to breathe. She brought me out of my anxiety and back to the reality of my birth.

Cindi quickly made sure everything necessary was in order, the left to help Mom no. 1 birth her beautiful baby. I had a small tear that Cindi came back and sutured a few hours later. It was the least of my worries and didn’t pain me at all. I was too busy loving my sweet little William.

AFTER all of this… we called our parents. They were a little bit in shock that William had arrived without them even being clued into labor, but I think that worked out for the best. I know my dramatic laboring would have had them absolutely frantic, and their worried would have made me absolutely crazy.

My birth was fantastic. I’d do it over in a heart beat, despite my proclamation during labor to Daniel that I didn’t want anymore kids 😉 GBO made my birth amazing. Even when I felt like I couldn’t go on, they were there to assure me I could. And they were right. Was it worth it? Absolutely. Was I worried? Not a bit. I felt so comfortable in their care.

My birth went nothing like I had planned. It was intense, quick, and I felt ill-prepared. However, I can easily say it was everything I hoped it would be 🙂

I’d also like to note… had we GONE to the 9:00pm movie… my water would have broken right then and there in the theater! Bahahaha.

Thank you everyone who attended my birth and made it fantastic. I hope that more people take advantage of the awesome opportunity to have a home birth. I can never thank you enough for giving my family this birth experience and story.

Other unimportant (but interesting) details: I had my placenta encapsulated and have been taking it in pill form to help with recovery and to help prevent PPD. I ended up having to use and wean from a nipple shield the first few days for breastfeeding. I had no stretch marks on my stomach, but tons on my breasts and a few on my hips.

The Birth of Ambrose Gregory

The birth story of Ambrose from nicole lancaster on Vimeo.

The Birth of Delilah

The Birth Story of Peyton Lorelai

****Disclaimer: May be more information/detail than you ever wanted to read or imagine. I tried to keep it clean 🙂 ****

Well I am not even sure where to begin! For those who have read previous blogs or know us well, know our story of our boys. We had both boys by Cesarean Section. Derek was an emergency after 12 hours of labor and started to have heart decelerations. Austin was a repeat so that Trevor could be home since he was due to leave the country on yet another trip.

The big question I keep getting is why did I want to have a homebirth? To be honest in the beginning I did not necessarily want a homebirth, I just wanted a VBAC. There was no way I was going to be cut open again. I did not want the recovery of a C-Section and more importantly I did not want to wait one to two hours to be able to hold my little girl. I wanted to be able to hold her right away and nurse her and with a C-Section there was no way I would be able to do that. Finding an OB who would allow you VBAC after 2 Sections was nearly impossible. I found a midwife who would allow me to try for the VBAC. After talking with her several times, my only reservation of course was the word “natural.” That means no pain meds. I wasn’t sure if I was ready for such a big leap, but I knew I did not want to be cut. After finding out we were pregnant, my midwife was amazing. Every appointment, every phone call, she was always very supportive.

For several weeks prior to her birth, I had contractions. These were changing from the Braxton Hicks I was having and we all really thought she was going to come earlier than expected. I would have days of a few hours to even 12 hours of contractions but with no full on labor. Such a tease. I even kept saying she was just teasing us. Several people including my midwife would tell me that I would have a easy labor with all the “practice” I was having.

Tuesday, 8 Feb, I went in and saw my midwife. I was only 39 weeks, but we knew Trevor was going to be leaving soon to start a new job so we had my midwife stir things up a bit. She went ahead and stripped my membranes to see if we could get the contractions to stay. Of course no such luck for me. I also went to my chiropractor to have an adjustment and to help make sure our baby girl was in a good position. After all day of contractions, they stopped yet again. I have been very frustrated with this since this of course was not the first time. I just wanted either labor to start or no contractions until it was time. Now the contractions were not bad. I still functioned with them and played with the boys and went about my normal activities, I just wanted them to progress or just stop. I would just get too excited when I thought things were finally starting to happen. And believe me we tried everything to induce naturally at home on our own. All the wives tales and more. Of course nothing.

Wednesday, 9 Feb, I wake up to nothing of course, and my midwife was checking on us and asked if we wanted to see her again. Trevor jumped at the chance. So we went and saw her again to have her stir things up again. After we saw her we even went to a local Thai restaurant where I asked for my food to be Thai hot, hoping this would help things along as well. When we got home, I decided to take a nap. More to pass time and I was a little tired since I have not been sleeping the greatest with beach ball in belly 🙂 When I woke up from my nap around 2:00 pm, I thought things were starting to stop yet again, so I asked Trevor to help me encourage things along. I walked around the room, sat on the exercise ball, practiced squatting with the contractions. All hoping this would start creating more and not stop. We started talking about how do we know when to call our midwife. She always told us when we needed her, but with all my “false” starts I wasn’t sure I would know when that was. I didn’t want to call her and then she have to leave cause things stopped or did not progress just yet. Of course I did not want to wait too long either thinking that I might not be able to handle anything. About 3:15 I had a few that brought me to tears. It was more that I was squatting with them again and that it just felt pressure/pain in my pelvis that it caught me off guard. I decided not to squat with them anymore. I decided to go to the bathroom and when I came out Trevor was busy texting our midwife. I got mad at him cause of course I was nothing thinking labor was starting. I just thought it was my positioning. He asked her to come over just to assess me. 3:30pm her and her team was there. I tried to joke with her that it was probably a waste of their time and of course everything would stop in a few hours like always. I had told Trevor that we probably should wait til my water broke to have called. (not a good idea at all, you will see why soon). My midwife watched me with a few of my contractions and I guess pretty much knew to stay.

Derek came home from school shortly after that and I was allowed into the birth tub, so the boys rubbed my belly and my back while I was in the tub. Of course they wanted to get in too, but we said no. I stayed in there for about an hour. The contractions were not too bad, but I was told i had to move a bit so I was out and walked around the room a bit and did try some squatted positions. I did not like these that much. I really liked just leaning over the couch the best. They did not seem all that bad in this position. Trevor was a huge help. My contractions were not super consistent. Sometimes I would have two on top of each other and other times it seemed like I had a good 10 minute break. I am sure it was never that long, but that is what it felt like. The boys went to McDonalds, while I labored more at home. The next hour or so did seem to go by somewhat fast. Trevor had predicted earlier I would have the baby by 8pm and we had all laughed and easily said this could go to the morning. I was on the couch by 5 or 5:30 when my midwife decided to check me. I of course said it would be a waste of time cause I was probably only 6 cm dilated and that everything would stop by 10pm. She did it any way and I was 8-9 cm! I told her to stop lying to me cause there was no way I went from being 3-4cm for several days and even that morning to 8-9 cm in about 3-4 hours. She assured me she was not lying and that I would have the baby soon. My water still has not broken at this point. She made me get off the couch and try some squatted positions with the contractions and I tried, but wanted to be back in the tub. So that is where I went. 6:30pm my boys came home from their dinner and went up to have their nightly bath. I was enjoying the tub as much as I could at this point, but when I had a contraction I was told to bear down which definitely burned. My water still has not broken and it is time for me to push. We were thinking she was going to be born still in her sac, but alas it finally broke in the tub. That was a very weird feeling. I am not even sure I can describe it. It did not hurt, but I thought it was her head. Of course I was severely disappointed when they said it was my water. The burning was from my sac stretching everything. Now more burning was happening, but her heart rate started not to be too good, so they told me I had to get out of the tub. I argued. I did not want to leave the tub. I didn’t want to move. I was forced. Trevor, our midwife, and birth assistants basically pulled me out. I screamed of course one cause I really did not want out, but two because trying to get out over the tub was the most excruciating pain I had ever been in. Now the tub was in our kitchen so I crawled a few spaces on the floor then basically rolled over on the kitchen floor and wasn’t moving. My midwife kept yelling at me to get her out in the next few contractions. She even threatened an episiotomy which I said I didn’t care. She of course became mad at me for that too cause I was supposed to care. At this point I had screamed to just do whatever to get her out. Cut, pull, whatever. I just wanted her out at this point. I wanted her out so much that I apparently was very entertaining to everyone. I was singing on the contractions for her to come out. I am not sure of everything I was saying, but I do know my midwife kept telling me to have deep sounds and not high pitched. I felt that I couldn’t do that until the end and so I would sing deeply to get out, come out, etc. Apparently this was funny which I do not mind. You do what you need to. So 11 minutes from my water breaking to all this, she was finally out. I had indeed pushed her out. There was pain, but the feeling of her head and body was not painful at all, it was just different. The pain was in the beginning before she came out, I guess just stretching everything. I got to hold her immediately which is exactly what I wanted to do.

I was so exhausted that I knew I was holding her and looking at her, but I felt like I wanted to sleep. Here it is only 6:58pm. It was only 4-5 hours long! I could not believe it. I was for sure thinking it would go on all night. She did require extra care since she came so fast. She did not get squeezed in my pelvis much and had a lot of fluid and all in her lungs. She was suctioned twice and given oxygen. I did get to hold her for some of this but they did take her off my belly to take care of her more, but she came right back to me. The boys came down after their bath and helped daddy cut the umbilical cord. They were so in awe of her. Even today all they want to do is hold her and kiss her. Austin is always checking on her or wanting to know where she is. By 9:30 pm the boys were in bed sleeping and the rest of us were just enjoying our newest bundle of joy: Peyton Lorelai Pankau. She was 6 lbs 12 ozs and 19 inches long. I think we went to bed around midnight or so after we made several phone calls and even skyped with a few family members to show her off.

Would I do it again? Absolutely! There is nothing like already being home and going about our day. I am not hooked up to IV’s and do not have a nurse coming in every so many hours waking me up to check vitals. Although Trevor was in charge of doing that for the first 24 hours, but it is much different having him do that instead of in a hospital with nursing staff. Especially when you have a different one each day and night. You get to eat real food instead of yucky hospital food and are not restricted on what you can eat. I get to be with my whole family instead of being away from everyone. The experience was 10 times better than I ever expected. Even if I was entertaining for the Trevor and the birthing staff in our home. So going from two hospital births with C-Sections to an all natural birth on my kitchen floor, I would say I was indeed a success. If I can do this, then anyone can do it, cause those who know me, know that when it comes to pain, I am the biggest baby ever! And now I have a beautiful baby girl with a perfect little head, smile, eyes, etc. She is just so perfect, that I would do it all again.