At 41 weeks and 3 days pregnant, I started having contractions. My contractions were 5-20 minutes apart that whole day. I texted my doula, Jaymie, and she told be that I was in labor but not active yet, so I went on with my day and then went to sleep. That night, I woke up around 2:30 am. My contractions woke me up. They were a lot closer together. I waited about an hour, then woke my husband. He asked if he should call the midwife and I told him not to call yet. I wanted to make sure this was the real thing. I timed the contractions out on an app on my iphone. After two hours of contractions 2-3 minutes apart, I had him call the midwife and doula. She asked how I was doing, and I said I could still manage. She said she would be on her way in about an hour.
As the night went on, or should I say morning, the contractions got stronger. I told my husband he should probably fill up the birthing tub. I thought it was interesting how after each contraction, I would have a minute or two of painless peace. That's the awesome thing about labor. It's just a temporary uncomfortable sensation, not really the same feeling as pain. He filled it up with really hot water, and then he covered it with a shower curtain to keep it warm. The midwife arrived and checked to see how much I was dilated. She said 5-7 centimeters, it was hard to tell. She left the room for a little bit and so did my husband. I was kind of in my own zone. With each contraction, I alternated between sitting on my ball, kneeling against the bed on the floor, standing against the wall, and pacing. Dr Lori, my midwife, said it was really good I was upright instead of lying in bed and that it would help make the labor progress quicker.
Right when I was getting pretty uncomfortable, my husband walked in and said I was allowed to get in the tub now. YES! So I stepped into the tub and it was still hot! I was fine with it, but called my doula over to make sure the temperature was safe for the baby. She felt it and gave me the green light. As I sunk into the water, it was an amazing feeling. It was so relaxing and relieved so much pressure. Jaymie checked the babies heart rate, and it was perfect. I relaxed in a sitting position with my back against the side in the warm water. It was so nice. After a while, I started to feel really warm so my husband turned our fan on and Jaymie got a cold wash cloth for my head. Jaymie was so helpful, and I feel so blessed to have had her there.
Once I was in transition, my midwife came in the room. She checked the babies heart rate, and everything was still great. At this point, I asked my husband to get in the pool with me. I did not know beforehand if I would want him in the the tub with me, but at that moment, I knew I wanted him in there. He sat behind me in the tub and I leaned my back against him. I told him where to massage when I had contractions. Dr Lori told me to start pushing whenever I felt the urge. At first, I felt no urges to push. Just contraction, contraction, contraction...and then I felt it. It was like my body just started pushing on its own. What it feels like basically, for those who haven't given birth yet, is like you reaaaaally need to poop plus cramping like period cramps. It's really not that bad.
My body pushed on its own for a few contractions, and then I started helping my body. That's when I started making progress. I was chanting Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa, in a low tone with every contraction. That is what they told me to do. They said they could see the head, but it was still pretty far in there. This is when it got more uncomfortable. I pushed in the same sitting position for a while, and then changed to a kneeling position facing my husband. With every contraction I would grab on to him, chant, and push. I remember asking at one point, "Is her head out yet??" And they said no, but it's getting closer with every push! I didn't talk a whole lot during my labor. The only thing I really said was "Water", when I needed water. They asked if I wanted to change positions and I said no. My husband told me, "Babe, her head is stuck." Dr Lori and Jaymie immediately said, "No, no. It's not stuck, but maybe you could try a different position?" I guess in the position I was in, my baby was hitting my tailbone basically, which was making it harder for her to descend.
So I changed positions, back to a sort of sitting position against my husband, but this time I had my legs up on the edges of the tub so that there was more space for her to come out. They told me that her head was really close now. With the next few pushes, my Aaaaaaaaa's were more like AAAAAAAAAHHHH's! With my next push I felt a strong burning sensation, they said, "It's her head! Do you want to see it?" I told them no and just kept pushing hard because I just wanted her to be out! With one more hard push, I felt her body jello its way out. She was here, and she was perfect. Ocean Siren Maluhia Fajardo was born at 10:15 am on March 21st.
They handed her to me, and I just held her close. She wanted to breast feed right away. My husband reached around me and she grabbed his finger. I could hear him crying in back of me. Her eyes were wide open, looking around and she didn't cry until later. I was so happy to be able to give her a peaceful birth. We waited a few minutes for the cord to stop pulsing, and then my husband cut the cord. We stayed in the pool to deliver my placenta, while I breast fed Ocean. Once the placenta was out, it was such a relieving feeling. I didn't want anyone else to hold Ocean yet, but I had to give her up so I could get out of the tub. My husband finally got to hold her. Jaymie and Lori had to help me get out of the tub and walk over to the bed because I was so weak.
They lay me in bed and handed Ocean back to me and covered us with lots of blankets. Ocean pooped right away, so that was good. She was measured and weighed at 22 inches and 7.12 lb. Jaymie brought me some cinnamon tea. The showed me the healthy placenta, and also that I had a pretty large blood clot in it, so I had to stay in bed for three days and not do anything. I had them put my placenta in the refrigerator. Lori said that I needed a few stitches, so she stitched me up right there. It was a wonderful experience with wonderful people. I wouldn't have wanted it any other way. Thank you Dr Lori, Jaymie and babe so much for everything. I love all you guys, and I love you my Ocean girl. You are the queen of my heart now.