Sophia’s Birth

Sophie’s Water Birth

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By Robin Elise Weiss, LCCE, Guide

My first child, Emma was born in December of 1994 in the hospital- long labor, posterior presentation, Stadol, internal fetal monitor, tearing… etc. etc.. The staff and doctors were great but I knew the second time around that I wanted to do it differently.

I found out we were pregnant with our second child in late September of 1996 and had a wonderful pregnancy. Lots of Braxton Hicks contractions toward the end of my pregnancy and even some false labor… but finally the morning of May 21st, the Braxton Hicks’ felt different. We had planned a home birth with a certified nurse midwife and my husband and two close friends. Our oldest daughter was going to spend the time with my mother. (It was to be the longest time ever away from me- and also our first night apart.) We had also read a lot about laboring in the water and had borrowed a small hot tub from my parents that we set up on our deck in the back yard. So- at 1:30 am when the contractions started- I was very ready to go. I tried to sleep, but of course couldn’t so I made some hot tea and listened to mellow music. I woke my husband. Lee up at about 6 a.m. and told him that I thought this was real. (the previous morning I had said the same thing- and it stopped completely after six hours) My mom came to get my daughter around 8 am and already contractions were stopping again, unless I walked. So that is what we did. My husband and I and our friend, Wendy spent most of the day walking. We have a great two mile walk from our house to the Yellowstone River and we did that a lot. If I stopped for too long, the labor would stop too. About seven or eight that evening, I thought it had stopped completely. In fact our other close friend, Kelley and her husband and daughter came over to have dinner with us. I called my midwife and she said if they slowed down I could take some chlorophullum- a homeopathic form of blue cohosh. Between eight and ten p.m., she had me take two tablets every ten minutes. Boy- did that get things going!! My last walk to the river was with my friend Kelley and my neighbor, Michelle. The contractions during our walk were coming every two minutes, but still not very intense. I was chatting and laughing the whole time. We got home at 10 p.m. and I called my midwife again and told her I thought things were really rolling. When she got to our house at 11 p.m. I was only 4 c.m.’s- that really bummed me out. There was nothing else to do- so Wendy, Kelley and I got in the hot tub at 11:45 p.m. Pretty quickly after that, my water broke (with my friend Kelley in the tub with me- she got out pretty quickly!) and right after that I threw up over the edge of the tub. My midwife, who had decided to go to bed after I was only 4 c.m.’s was woken up and came out to check on me. Contractions became more intense, but because of the water I was able to stay completely in control of each one. My husband was up by my head, my friends to my side, and Roberta(the midwife) sat at my other side. It was a beautiful night and also a full moon. I held on to the tub with my arms behind my head and was able to watch the clouds zoom by the moon in between contractions.

All of a sudden I had the unbelievable urge to push. I tried to keep my body from pushing, but I couldn’t. Roberta checked me and I was only 5 c.m.’s! That was at 12:45 a.m. The unbelievable part was that Sophie had not even come down into the birth canal yet- she was still floating! I was very upset about this- and for a split second thought that I would end up in the hospital with a c-section.. But thanks to my wonderful support and to the water I was able to keep going. I gently pushed with each contraction and when Roberta checked me again at 1:00 a.m., I was 10 c.m.’s!!!(in 15 minutes) Roberta at one point had said to me, ” You aren’t getting out of this tub are you?!” And I said no way. So with another push, Sophie’s head came out and I could touch it under the water. Her shoulders got stuck just a little bit and took a couple of pushes to get out. But out she came at 1:14 a.m. (29 minutes after I was only 5 c.m.’s dilated) and was immediately placed on my chest and wrapped in towels. She was just beautiful. After a minute or so, we looked to see what she was, and both my husband and I said, a boy. Then when we looked again, we realized it was another little beautiful baby girl, Sophie. She just looked at all of us with great big eyes. It was all wonderful. We got out of the tub to deliver the placenta, then Roberta stitched me up. I did tear because her shoulders got stuck. The most wonderful thing was after everyone went home, Lee, Sophie and I just crawled in our bed together. We were already home. It was an amazing birth!

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