My mom and Grama arrived Thursday morning. I was miserable! I felt so sick, and was so upset about not being able to fully focus on our soon coming birth. Everyone agreed that Matt should take me out to dinner, and get me out of the house. I hadn't been out for about 2 weeks due to flu season! We went to Red Robin for dinner. Then we walked around Target and Walmart. It was so refreshing to be out with Matt. Throughout the evening, my mild contractions became pretty regular at about 5 minutes apart. I told Matt that I bet Malakai's birthday would be November 6th! We came home, and I went to bed. Matt stayed up making sure everything was ready if we needed to go to the hospital in the morning. I had contractions all night, and also got some sleep.
In the morning, my contractions began to get better. I couldn't talk through them at about 8:30. We began timing them. They were between 5 and 7 minutes apart. They got a little closer together, and I decided to take a shower. That really helped! I had 6 good contractions while I was in the shower. When I got out, I called Matt at work, and told him it was time to come home! We left for the hospital in about 15 minutes or so. The ride really wasn't as bad as I had feared it would be. Matt did speed, and didn't exactly obey every traffic law!
We arrived at the hospital a little after 10:30 am. Our midwife, Eileen was waiting in our room. The pool was set up and filled. The bed had been moved out to the hallway. :o) We met our nurse. This was one of the many amazing things God had planned for us. Our nurse had had 4 homebirths. 3 in the water! She was so exited about us. She had requested to be called in to be our nurse whenever we checked in. She was awesome! I had to get some bloodwork done between contractions, but refused the IV!! I am not sure when I got in the pool, but I fell in love with that pool! Oh soooo nice!! I had to get more blood taken. It was ok. We just went with it.
Eileen knew I wanted lots of privacy and space. So, she and everyone else left Matt and I alone for a while. It was nice! She checked on us periodically. My contractions got better and better. It was getting nearly impossible to be in a comfortable position through them. Yay!! Then, I told Matt to kneel down in front of me. I grabbed his shirt and got through my much stronger contractions. Quietly in my heart, I was really hoping Malakai would be born with just the two of us there. A couple minutes later, I braced myself, gripped Matt's shirt and felt my body begin to push! Matt asked me if my water had broken, but I could not speak. My body bore down again very strongly. I felt my tailbone move up and out of the way as Malakai's head came out!! At that time, Eileen and another midwife came in to check on us. Eilleen heard me make a grunting noise, and said, "Oh! Is it time?!". I said, "Yes, the head is out." In fact, his bag of waters was still in tact around his head! When I felt his head, it felt so cool being in a waterballoon! I relaxed for a moment. Then, my body pushed the rest of his body out. His water broke as his shoulders were born. I lifted him up out of the water and to my chest!
His heartrate was good. He was limp and getting more purple though. We rubbed him, kissed him, spoke to him, and he wasn't snapping out of it. It had only been a minute, and sometimes waterbabies don't breathe for a whole minute just because they are not stimulated to breath until they are out of the water. Eileen gave him a few breaths mouth to mouth. He gave a little gasp and squeaked, but not enough. Katherine (OB that works with Eileen) gave him a few more breaths, and they cut the cord to get him to a flat surface. When they suctioned him, they found that he had swallowed some meconium. He pinked up right away. This particular situation would've been handled well at home too. I am very pleased with the care he received at the hospital. Everyone was very calm and acted quickly. They were great!
They brought him back to me in the pool. It didn't take him long to show me he was a pro at nursing! Soon my placenta was born. Then, we got out of the pool.
So, that's it! All of the fear, planning, tears, praying, and frustration about Malakai's birth came down to a very unusual hospital birth! Matt and I got to share a moment between just the two of us that we couldn't have even had at home! His birth began as an unattended birth, and I caught him myself! Malakai's birth was definitely the easiest I have ever had. I guess it helps to have a 10# 14oz baby before to plow the way!! lol!
For the record, the birth itself was the best part of our hospital experience. We were not thrilled to have to deal with the many unnecessary hospital protocols that you don't have to deal with at home. It is definitely not as restful to stay at the hospital, and soooo many people have their hands on your baby. You don't have as much say in your baby's care as you do at home. Yes, I'm still partial to homebirth, but now I know hospital birth can be awesome too! For us, the baby care afterwards was the main headache. We had nice people. All the required tests and procedures and middle of the night disturbances are not nice though!
God totally blew me away! . . . and, Malakai doesn't even have hemophilia after all of that!
Malakai Thomas Reeves was born on November 6th, 2009 at 12:32pm in a birth pool at Women's and Children's Hospital in Buffalo, NY. He was 7lbs. 12oz. and 21 inches long. His actual birth was mainly attended by his Daddy, and he was caught by his own Mommy. "God has not given us the spirit of fear, but of POWER, and of LOVE, and of a SOUND MIND." "I can do ALL things through Christ Who strengthens me." God is truly awesome!!! That was the beginning of Malakai Thomas Reeves!! Whew!
You can read all four of Sarah's birth stories here: My Birth History as a Hemophilia Carrier
Sarah is now expecting her fifth child and planning her fourth home birth!
Stay tuned for the birth video from Malakai's birth.