By Kim Borchert, DTI Doula
Libby’s birth starts about a week before she was born. On Tuesday, September 2, I had a bit of spotting, I was 37 weeks 2 days. I called my Mom and let her know that she might want to come out to Utah a day earlier than she had originally planned. So she very hurriedly packed up and left. We spoke throughout the day, and I told her that nothing was happening anymore, so she should just go to Kaysville to sleep. She got there at about 2 am.
On Wednesday, nothing was happening at all. So, Mom came up and we just hung out for the day, went and got peaches on Thursday, and canned 56 bottles of peaches on Friday. On Saturday, Mom decided to go back down to Kaysville and hang out with my siblings and their kids for a couple of days. So, I baked. Not just the baby, but food, food, food. I made whole wheat bread on Saturday, zucchini bread on Sunday, and had plans for making scones on Monday.
Monday morning, September 8, I woke up on the verge of tears. I was just feeling so tired and so overwhelmed and just…done. I had an appointment to see the chiropractor later that day, but I called to see if I could get in earlier. I was just in so much pain and needed an adjustment. I had pain shooting down the front of my thighs and I just couldn’t walk.
So, we headed up to the chiropractor and on the way there, Seth said, “Mom, why are you mean all the time?”. At that, I broke down in tears. I cried for the 15 minutes it took to get there, and the 15 minutes home. Then, Jeremy came home for lunch and I cried for another hour. After that, I felt much better, had more patience with my children, and was having some nice contractions.
Fast forward to Monday evening at around 6 pm. I went to the bathroom and to my pure excitement, found that I was having bloody show. With Seth and Amelia, I had that, and they were both born within 12 hours.
So, after dinner, I went for a walk to see if we could get these contractions a bit more regular, and it worked! I called my Mom and my sister-in-law, to let them know that things might be happening. I knew that my Mom would call my sister, so I let her do that.
At around 8:30, Jeremy was getting the kids in bed and I called my midwife, Heather. She told me to try to get some rest and see what the next couple of hours brought. If it was true labor, sleeping wouldn’t stop it. So, I did just that. I laid down, watched TV and ate Oreo’s. When I realized that I couldn’t concentrate on Arrested Development, or even laugh at it, I knew that things weren’t stopping. So, I tried to sleep. At about 11:30, I called everyone and told them to come on up, we were having a baby.
Jeremy and I bustled around the house, getting the tub filled, all the birth supplies out, and just working with my body and baby and these contractions. Soon, everyone started getting here.
When Heather arrived, I asked her to check me. She did, and said I was at a really stretchy 3 and then stripped my membranes (per my request).
Things got a bit fuzzy around now…I just know that I wasn’t in the tub yet, because I wasn’t dilated enough (I really like to be at least at a 5 before getting in the water). I was vocalizing a lot, and was feeling the contractions right on my pubic bone. I got in the shower and that really helped things get going even more.
At some point, I asked Heather to check me again, and she did and told me I was at a 5, so I promptly got in the tub. I don’t remember how long I stayed in the water, but it felt like a long time. I asked Heather to check me again, and I was still at a 5 and the bag of water and baby were really high. So, she suggested I get out to let gravity do a little more work. So I very begrudgingly got out. I did everything I could to get this baby to engage and eventually got back in the water.
I felt like I was nearing transition, I was throwing up and was feeling really out of control, so I asked Heather to check me again. I was still at a 5, but the babe was much further down. So, I asked her to break my water so the baby could engage. Well, she did and immediately I was in hard transition. The contractions were one on top of the other and I was throwing up a ton. Heather even made the comment that I was going to puke the baby out, and I said, “I’m trying!”.
I knew it was getting very close to time to push, so between contractions, I nodded at my Mom and said, “Seth”. She knew it was time to go wake up the big brother and let him come out and see what was going on.
She later told me that she went into his room and woke him up. As soon as he saw her, his face lit up and he knew exactly what was happening. He came out and waved at me and I think I said “Hi Buddy”, and then another contraction came and I couldn’t talk anymore.
I went from 5 cm to complete in about 20 minutes. Getting her engaged did the trick for sure!
When I had Amelia, I didn’t want to push. I did with Seth, and tore so badly, that with Amelia I was really afraid of that. I really wanted to do this baby the same as Amelia, but when it came time, I knew that I wasn’t supposed to do that. So, as soon as I felt her head coming down, I pushed until her head came out. I immediately said, “Seth! Come here”. Then I pushed again and her body started to come out. I told Heather, “Get the baby, get the baby!” I felt this great urgency for her to get the baby out and she did. She grabbed the baby, told me to stop pushing and unwrapped the cord from around her neck, it was wrapped twice.
She had a bit of a hard time starting to breathe, so we gave her some oxygen, and she did great. I had Seth come over and look to see if he had a new brother or sister, and he looked and said, “A brother!”. Then Jeremy and I double checked and saw that no, it was a sister. Seth then said “I get another sister?!” I was shocked, I was SURE this was a boy, this pregnancy was SO much like my pregnancy with Seth, but nope, he got another sister.
After we determined that he had a new sister, he asked for his new green light saber. We had bought it a couple weeks ago and had it stashed away until the baby was born. I thought it was so funny that she was born, and now it was time for his new weapon!
While in the water, I delivered the placenta (another huge one!), and then I got out of the water. Daddy and Seth took Libby to our room while my Mom and sister got my bed ready for us. I got out of the water and went and laid down in my bed.
I didn’t tear, not one bit, YIPEE!!! Libby weighed 8 lbs. 2 oz., and was 21 inches long. Her dark hair, fingers and toes look like Emma’s, and her nose and mouth look like Amelia’s. She is just so beautiful and I am so blessed to have my Liberty here with me.
One note about the actual birth. I am so grateful that I listened to my body and to the Spirit telling me what she needed. Leading up to Libby’s birth, I had several priesthood blessings. In each of them, I was told that if I would listen to the Spirit, I would know what I needed to do to ensure a safe birth for my baby and myself. When it came time to push, I felt very strongly that I needed to get her out as soon as possible. It wasn’t what I had planned, it wasn’t what I had visualized, but it was what my body, and the Spirit were telling me to do. I firmly believe that if women would listen, and be able to listen, to their bodies, they would know what they needed to do and when they needed to do it. I am really grateful for that knowledge and my beautiful baby.