Gentle and Free
by Victoria M.
I never went to a doctor during pregnancy. I never went to a midwife either. I took care of myself and my children alone. I researched a lot and went on the internet a lot and in the end I gained something that no doctor or midwife could have ever given me: TRUST for MYSELF. My homebirth changed our lives forever…
It was about 12:00 noon on Sunday March 3rd that I began having very mild “braxton hicks” contractions. The contractions were so mild that I hardly noticed them and they were not regular at all so I thought I’d get on with my day and forget about them.
Our washer had recently broken so we decided to go do a couple of loads at my mother’s home (which is just a couple of blocks away). Everything was fine all day, with the “contractions” coming and going very mildly and sporadocally.
We stayed at my mom’s until about 9:00 PM and then we came home and put our two children to bed. I joked with my husband about how the baby would probably be born in a few days and he said he was totally ready to have the baby.
At around 11:00 PM we went to bed. He fell asleep right away but I couldn’t sleep at all so I decided to watch some TV. I still wasn’t feeling any pain but the “contractions” were coming closer together now.
At around 1:00 AM I started going to the bathroom (my bathroom is at the other end of the house). I was back and forth from my bedroom to the bathroom about once every 10 minutes. I had to keep emptying my bladder and bowel A LOT!!
It was now about 3:00 AM and I still wasn’t in any pain, the “contractions” felt like warm tightenings, so I thought that if I took a bath and relaxed maybe they’d stop and I could go back to sleep (by this point I knew I was in real labour but I thought it was very early labour so I wanted to get back to sleep so that I could be ready for the “hard” labour the next day). The bath was very nice and relaxing but the “contractions” didn’t go away. I stayed in the bath for about a half an hour and then I got out. I went to the bathroom again and then I went to my living room to lay on the couch.
At 4:25 (I looked at the clock) I had a very hot contraction (no longer just warm) I started to breathe through it and then I called my husband’s name. He came out of our bedroom right away and I told him that I thought I was starting labour. He went to wash his face and then got blankets, candles, incense, and a relaxing music tape. He made the atmosphere perfect and relaxing. He then rubbed my back and reminded me to breathe through the contractions.
I started having some fairly strong hot “contractions” and then I got on my knees and leaned on some pillows to see if I could help speed things along; well it worked. As soon as I kneeled my water broke! I breathed through another contraction and then I had to go to the bathroom again. My husband came with me. As I sat on the toilet I had two more contractions, they were the only two very uncomfortable contractions I had. I opened the window beside me and looked out at the sky, then I said “Mother Earth, Father Creator… please guide me through this wonderful journey…” Then I cleaned myself up and stood up. I had one more contraction and squatted on the floor. I called my husband in and told him the baby was coming. He said I couldn’t have the baby in the bathroom and wanted to move me. I told him that the baby was coming now and then my body started to push my baby out. My baby came out after two gentle, involuntary pushes and my husband caught her as she came out. I said “it’s a girl!” and my husband started crying right away. It was a wonderful feeling to be the vessel by which this birth occured.
She came out wide-eyed and looked right at us. She then gave a little cry. We looked at the time and it was 5:05 AM. I moved to the living room and I started to nurse her right away. It was so beautiful!!!!!! Our one-year-old son woke up right then and he came to see the new baby. We then woke up our three-year-old daughter. We were all so happy and excited to be with our new addition.
I started having very strong afterpains so I told my husband to get some scissors and string to cut the cord. We cut the cord and tied it with a string, and then I asked him to hold the baby so I could try to push the placenta out. Well it wasn’t ready to come out yet but I was really having some strong contracting (it hurt more than the labour!) so I laid down and asked my husband to bring the baby to me so I could nurse her hoping that it would help my uterus contract and get the placenta out. It worked. I pushed the placenta out while laying on the bed (which was protected by old comforters) and nursing my daughter.
By this time it was around 6:30 AM and it was light outside. We went to sleep for a while and then when I woke up I called my mom and my husband’s mom and they came over to meet her. It was so perfect, I will never forget it.
We decided to name her Na’imah (which means “Gentle”) because of the gentle way she arrived into our lives.
Well that’s my birth story…Everyone keeps saying to us “It’s lucky that everything worked out,” “I’m glad nothing went wrong!” “You’re lucky it was an easy labour!” But I know that it wasn’t “LUCK”! I prepared myself very thoroughly for this birth, I got rid of most of the fear associated with birth and I studied hard to de-program myself from all of the misconceptions about birth. Birth is natural, natural doesn’t belong in an unnatural environment like a hospital. I know why my birth was so easy and why my husband was so calm and relaxed…because we had no doubt that we could do it, we had no objections to impose on nature, we let it happen and didn’t obstruct, we welcomed our child into this world freely and easily… and LUCK had nothing to do with it.
Thank you all for taking the time to read this. May all your births be free.