All right, here we go. I’d been preparing for this birth with Hypnobabies and part of that program involves visualizing the details of your birth. I chose to visualize a Friday birth between the hours of 1am and 6am. Yeah, I don’t play around. I threw down the gauntlet.
On Friday, 3 days past my “guess date,” at approximately 1PM (ok, so it didn’t work perfectly), I had a gush of fluid while standing in the kitchen. I was home alone. The fluid was clear. But did not continue to leak like it had during Norah’s birth. I thought perhaps Cedar’s head had sealed it since the baby was already very low. My pressure waves (Hypnobabies lingo for contractions) began immediately and were about 3-4 minutes apart. I listened to Cedar using a doppler and he/she sounded great. I waited an hour and then called Scott to come home. The waves continued and I listened to a couple of Hypnobabies scripts on my ipod. Everything was very relaxed and manageable. I called my sister and told her to come when she wanted to.
As things continued, I noticed that I was very much in my head. In other words, I was thinking too much. I was trying to doula myself. And the waves were spacing out. In an effort to get my mind elsewhere, I asked if we could play “Pass the Pigs” the game which always makes me laugh. Except for one stellar Leaning Jowler, I tossed a terrible game (Scott won) but I laughed so hard. Then we thought maybe we should go out to eat. So we went for Mexican where I ate a ton of food and had great pressure waves.
When we returned home, it felt like Cedar had spun from ROA to a posterior position. Pressure waves were spacing again. We decided to try the birth tub. The water should either stop things or intensify them.
Let me interject here that La Bassine birth tub rocks! So much better than the Aquadoula I used last time. It was deep and roomy. The floor inflates making it very comfortable and it has internal handles. I hopped in. It felt marvelous. And, the waves spaced even farther. But it was nice. Scott was playing the guitar and singing some Iron and Wine. Noelle had gone to bed. It was an intimate and sweet time. I got out of the tub and Scott got in. His back was sore so he had some therapeutic time in the water. Then we went to bed. Ok, I admit I went to bed utterly deflated.
When I woke the next morning, I felt embarrassed and discouraged. As a doula, I should have known if I was in “real” labor. Good thing Noelle is a counselor since I needed some emotional processing (over chocolate muffins) Saturday morning. Scott and I decided to spend the day watching movies, snuggling, and eating yummy food. I cried several times through the day. Hindsight: it was really nice to have a dress rehearsal and from the intensity of many of the waves, it was “real” labor. It was spinning the baby into position. Maybe changing my cervix some. More importantly, it gave me some warning that I needed to stop thinking like a doula and let my intuition take the reins. I wasn’t sure how I was going to do that though.
Saturday night, as Scott was rubbing some pressure points on my lower legs, I watched my belly as Cedar spun to LOA–the best position for beginning birth.
Now we were ready?