Story told by Lyra's mother.
I woke up like a light to what I knew was a contraction. I could feel that birthing energy running through my veins right away. I hopped up to check the time and it was 2:51am. I had gone to bed thinking it would be at least another week before baby made her appearance. In fact I had come home and was steam mopping the floors at 9 pm
that night when my hubby had mentioned he thought it might be tonight. I hadn’t had any signs of labor whatsoever though so assured him it wasn’t time. He’s pretty in tune with my birthing. If there’s a next time I will definitely trust him.
When I woke up to the contraction I figured I would be in it for the long haul and didn’t want to get too excited too soon so I did a few things around the house. I brushed my teeth and walked outside to get some fresh air. It was freezing! I had another contraction about ten minutes later so I decided to pull up the contraction timer app and start keeping track. I texted my mom to share my excitement that baby was likely on her way. I tried to lay down to rest but there was no way I could stay still with all this energy flowing. The waves kept coming. They felt nice and rhythmic and I was reminded of the intensity that only birthing brings. After a few I decided I’d call the midwives to let them know. My first birth had gone pretty smooth and fast so we had planned on calling after just a couple rushes. I had woken her up so just let her know it might be too soon but I was having contractions. We decided I’d time them for another half hour and call her back. I pulled out some laundry to fold to keep myself occupied and when I did the contraction app popped up a message that it was time to head to the hospital.
The boys were sleeping on the couch that night so I snuck in to wake up hubby. He asked me how I was feeling and I replied, “I feel like I’m having a baby!”. He was very excited and got up to get things ready around the house. He’s the absolute best birth partner I could ask for. Calm and confident in me. Always loving and supportive. I went back to folding laundry and he stood behind me through a rush holding my hips. I think they picked up speed then with the feeling of safety that he surrounds me with. He was getting the pool up and things in place while I was still texting the midwife. She was on her way by this point.
Our 2.5 yr old son woke up to the sound of the air pump blowing up the pool. I was trying to change out the sheets in the other room when I heard Papa having a talk with him to let him know this would be a big event and it’s time for him to be a big help to mama. Fortunately he was in a great mood and also super cute coming in to tell me we should probably take a rest and tell stories. I was working through contractions and trying to get the sheets changed over at the same time, on my hands and knees through most of them. When I got a chance to lay down with the boy to try to tell a story I couldn’t lay and had to move. My waters broke and hubby was on the phone with the midwife so I yelled to the other room to let them know. My sweet son gets up and tells me, “We’ll get you fixed water mama”. I knew that things were about to move even faster at that point. The midwife was just around the corner at that point and arrived shortly after.
I had been upright through all this, either leaning on something, over the birth ball or hands and knees for the rushes. I had gone in to turn the bathtub water on a few times but quickly turned it off because I didn’t want to waste hot water in the little tub when we needed to fill up the birth pool. I felt a very strong downward pressure on my perineum so was in the bathroom when the midwife arrived and listened to baby’s heart beat. She was strong and steady. She went in the other room to finish preparations for the water birth we were planning.
Then, surprise! In one strong rush I felt baby move down through my birth canal to almost crowning. The sounds I made brought hubby and midwife into the room with me. It was a mad rush to get towels down on the floor as I was on the toilet and for the midwife to get her gloves on. I had whipped past transition and was in full blown birthing mode. She urged me to get off the toilet which I felt was impossible. Her calm voice assured me that I didn’t want to have this baby where I was, I could move and I needed to now. I reached over to turn on the tub water thinking I still had time to fill at least that. I got as far as my knees on the floor where I could lean on to shelf in front of me. Another contraction and she was crowning. It was intense yet totally manageable and it felt great to know that this was it. The toddler walked in to the sounds of the tub excited about a bath and started dropping his pants at the door. I said I wanted to get in the water and the midwife kindly laughed and said this baby’s coming now. Another contraction and her head was out, another and she was earthside. No intentional pushing on my part. I finally had experienced the fetal ejection reflex in it’s pure form! My sweet toddler exclaimed, “There she is! She was in Mama’s belly!” and laughed. How grateful I am that he got to share this experience with us!
I moved to the bed and enjoyed the feel of her on my chest while we waited for the placenta. I had hemorrhaged after my first birth so we were patient waiting at least a half hour after this birth to deliver the placenta. She’s just perfect. Apgar of 10, weighing 7 lbs 5 oz and 18” long. She was born at 4:20 am, just 10 minutes after the midwife had arrived. Welcome to the family baby girl!