On Friday, June 27, 2008 at 3:49pm.
It’s a boy, Jude Aidan Lieb.
22.5 inches long
14 inch head
In addition to documenting the newest Lieb family member I wanted to let everyone know
that despite the many complications we encountered during Jude’s birth we are very pleased with our home birth experience. I have a strong sense of accomplishment that I not only had a completely natural birth in the comfort of my own home but I also overcame many difficult obstacles.
On Thursday, June 26th around 9am I started to notice the first stages of labor with constant but inconsistent contractions ranging from 15 to 10 minutes apart. I tried to take it easy at home knowing labor could begin soon. That evening Joe and I went to get some dinner and had the Updykes over to play Mario Kart as a contraction distraction.
Around 11pm the contractions were about 5 minutes apart so we called Sabrina, our midwife, to give her a heads up that baby Lieb was coming soon. We decided to rest as much as possible and give her a call when we were ready for her to come over. Joe slept for about 5 hours and I tried to rest but ended up pacing the room most of the night. Around 4 am we decided to call Sabrina since the contractions were about 3 minutes apart and more intense.
Erin, our doula, arrived first and started setting up the birthing pool. Around 6 am I got in the pool, it was nice to be in the warm water. I started feeling nauseas which is a sign you’re headed toward transition and subsequently threw up. Around 9 am Sabrina checked me and I was around 9cm dilated. I felt certain I was near the end. During a contraction Erin was pressing on my lower back for counter pressure against back labor and suddenly I felt a pop and she immediately stopped pressing. We believe my tail bone was dislocated which should be able to be popped back in place by the chiropractor, Jude just needed a little extra room to come out I guess. At the time it didn’t hurt and for several days afterward it didn’t hurt but now my bum is sore and ready for a chiro visit.
So after birthing in the pool for a while and attempting a few small pushes I decided to move to the bed for a change of location and position. After about an hour on the bed with little success, his head would slightly emerging and slipping back, we moved back to the pool. Apparently his head needed to mold to the birth canal and it was taking a little longer than expected. Drawing near exhaustion and with still little success we moved back to the bed. After laboring on my hands and knees for several hours my upper legs and buttock muscles were burning, my last resort position was the typical hospital position of lying on your back. Even though gravity wasn’t working in our favor I was able to have the strongest pushes despite of my exhaustion. It had been nearly four hours of pushing and his head finally started to emerge. I hadn’t eaten much so I was weak and losing morale, wondering why it was taking soooo long.
Finally he was coming but I didn’t have much left to give. He finally crowned but my contractions seemed to be far apart and the ability to push was small. I screamed and gave every little last bit I had for a few more contractions but it seems like he was stuck. After 4 minutes of crowning the situation became serious and Sabrina had to perform an episiotomy then realizing he had shoulder dystocia (where the shoulder(s) of the baby are not entering the pelvis during the birth as they should) she had to reach in and grab him and pull him out. We all realized the seriousness of the situation and I told them to do whatever was needed to get him out safely. With a few seconds he was out and lying on my chest blue and barely breathing I was instructed to touch and talk to him as they gave him oxygen. At my first touch he took a gasp of air and soon regained his color. That is when we first met our little babe, Jude Aidan. It was the most overwhelming experience in my life.
Because of my long labor and lack of nutrition I was completely exhausted and my contractions had slowed drastically which inhibited the delivery of the placenta. After attempting several standard methods of aiding it out gently we were nearing the end of our window to deliver the placenta and Sabrina was forced to reach in and pull is out, which with the aid of Erin, Joe, a strong contraction and a horrifying scream it came out. Relieved and tired they brought me some food that Joe’s mom had prepared. As I was eating my food I had a contraction that resulted in a sudden hemorrhages of what appeared to be a massive amount of blood. Sabrina quickly massaged my uterus as Erin gave me a small injection of Pitocin to start contractions of the uterus which would stop the bleeding. Luckily, I didn’t pass out but did drink two large glasses of orange juice to help me regain energy.
During the hemorrhage Erin, who was draining the birth pool into the bath tube, was rushed into the room to assist. During which the bathtub overflowed and flood the entire upstairs bathroom. Everyone was able to clean it up but we do have some noticeable water damage on the ceiling downstairs. Oops!
Finally, it was time to stitch me up but Sabrina wanted another opinion so she called another midwife Audrey to come stitch me because she had more experience with the degree of cut/tear I had. There was some discussion of transporting me to the hospital because I had a hematoma(An abnormal localized collection of blood in which the blood is usually clotted or partially clotted and is usually situated within an organ or a soft tissue space, such as within a muscle). At that point I really didn’t want to transport to the hospital, they would have admitted me and probably kept me for a day or more but I was willing to go if that was their conclusion. After some evaluation they concluded everything was OK and they stitched me right here at home. I think getting stitches was probably the hardest part because at that point I was so exhausted I just wanted to be left alone, but in all actuality it wasn’t that bad… a case of mind of matter I guess.
Finally, after everything was said and done Jude and I were reunited and all the family came in to see the new Lieb family. Despite all the unforeseen complications I always felt safe, weather it was because I knew I had a skilled midwife and doula, or because I was in my own home or just because I knew God was taking care of me.. probably all of the above.
Would I have another home birth? Yes! It’s not something I want to do anytime soon but after all the healing is complete having this experience under my belt can only make me stronger. If I can accomplish this, I can probably do anything!