Labor technically started I guess around bedtime December 1st, but I went to bed anyways, and Brandon came home from work around 2am. I realized then that the contractions were much harder and more regular than they had been and it was really hard to get back to sleep. Finally, around 4am I went into the bathroom and realized it was definitely real labor and at around 4:30 I woke him up. I didn't want him to miss it like he did with Grace's birth. I brought my phone into the bathroom and told him I'll call you when something happens. 5:06 my contractions slowed WAAYY down, and the pressure of them was enormous, downward, use your imagination. I called him a lot sooner than I imagined.
When he came in, my ever-so-experienced voice told him she'd be born in the next contraction. In reality, it was almost an hour later. Several horrendous moments later, she was born. She was facing the wrong direction (sunny side up) and when she did finally come through, it was quick and smooth. Not gentle, not painless, not fun, not pleasant. She quickly and smoothly damn near made me wish I was dead. Nice touch for a last child. I cried, I grunted & groaned, I stood up, sat down, screamed, leaned forward, howled, squatted, cursed, and then went through the same whole thing AGAIN a hundred times.
Labor can be hard, undignified, messy and.... animalistic. I can't imagine doing it in a hospital, with other people around. I think the changing positions a hundred times really makes them come out faster. Especially because she was posterior. When she did emerge, it wasn't in a gentle, two steps forward & two steps back style (that's nature's way of stretching mom gently.) Her head wasn't visible at all and then in one vicious contraction, she was born up to her elbows. No gentle stretching for me this time.
I often hear first time moms describing the birth of the baby's head in terms of weakness and failure because of this gentle stretching. I can't tell you how many times I've read and heard mothers say "I pushed as hard as I could and each time I'd stop pushing, baby's head would go right back inside." AS IF that was wrong. I think moms should be told BEFORE the birth that that is a desirable process. It's necessary. It's in their best interest to not be a human cannon.
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