We Did it Alone!
by Darlene Navarre
We did it alone!!!!! I am now officially a mother of five beautiful children. Unfortunately the first three were unsatisfying hospital births. Our fourth was a homebirth with a midwife and YES, our fifth baby was an unassisted homebirth with baby, mommy, and a bit of help from daddy.
What began as a deep love encounter between my husband and I ten months earlier, brought forth a healthy, beautiful, six pound baby boy. After ten months (two days short of four weeks over due) of watching my stomach grow, feeling my little one kick from within, all the waiting, hoping, patience, and impatience, with only four hours of hugs (contractions and labor) out came our little one, cord wrapped around his neck three times yet still as healthy as can be.
Our birth experience was the longest I had ever had, however it really isn’t a fair comparison because my first three children were medically induced. Labor, or the beginning of labor, started on Tuesday, March 23, 2002. That morning I started to spot which I figured must have been my mucus plug because at no other time during the course of the last part of labor did I ever bleed until after the baby came. I waited all that day for hugs or contractions but they never came and the next day the bleeding stopped.
Then again on Wednesday, April 1st I started to get mild hugs five minutes apart but after about four hours they just went away. Now when the third false alarm came I was positive that this would be the night – but it wasn’t.
On April 15th (almost four weeks past my due date) the strong hugs started coming every five minutes and again (probably due to exhaustion) they slowed down to one every hour.
This left my husband and I confused and uncertain if he should go to work. Since he works 100 miles from our home we decided that he should just take the day off and I should just go for a walk. Towards the evening, my hugs started coming every ten minutes so I decided I was going to go pull weeds just to keep them going. Well it worked and at 6 p.m. my hugs were five minutes apart and coming on strong.
However strong the contractions were, for the first time out of the five births, I felt calm and at ease that I was surrounded by only my husband and four children. After about two and a half hours, I decided to get into the bathtub to relax. My husband brought in our family albums and we just talked as the time passed. At about 9 p.m. the hugs started to become so strong I just wanted my husband to kiss me and that took the pain away. A little before 10 p.m. I felt inside me and our little one’s head was so close I could feel him without going too far. I told my husband to feel and because my children are homeschooled and our 13-year-old daughter witnessed our fourth son’s birth from a far, I wanted her to feel, too. I wanted her to learn all she could from this birth, for her future births.
Minutes later I stood up and the hugs were one on top of the other. I felt the need to push but I wanted the baby to come on his own. At this point the pain was so unbearable I started to beg my little one to give mommy a break. He did and after about a minute or so my body started to push our baby out. Slowly his head came out and then his body just shot out within seconds.
My husband caught him, and as he brought him up to me he was blue with his cord wrapped around his neck three times. With both my husband and myself scared and nervous, I quickly unwrapped the cord and turned him over patting and massaging his back. Within seconds our baby boy opened his eyes and started to look around without even a whimper. He found his way to my breast and latched on. He was finally here at 10:16 p.m. on April 16, 2002.
All I kept saying to my husband was “We did it, we did it on our own!” It was the most amazing, exciting, and unexplainable experience of my life. I was so full of excitement I couldn’t sleep the rest of the night and was still high the next morning. Because we thought our little one was going to be a girl we didn’t have a name until the next day. We borrowed a scale from a neighbor and our surprise little boy, Carter Howard Navarre, weighed in at six pounds, my littlest baby.
He is now three weeks old and is as healthy as can be. He is a great nurser and never cries or gets upset. He is very alert and strong. I know the relationship between my husband and I is stronger and I know I love him more than ever. Having our baby unassisted gave me back my power that the hospital and doctors took away and allowed me to be a better person and mother.