Writing and sharing Henri’s birth story was such an amazing experience for me. It was so fun to remember the day of his birth and now I have my birth story written down so that I will never forget it. I think birth is a huge experience in a woman’s life. It is her gateway into motherhood, which is incredibly life altering. Birth is intense, powerful, and unimaginably primal. We live in a society where birth is equated with pain and fear. To me, this is a very sad reality.
I’m going to start sharing other women’s birth stories on the blog because I want to give women a chance to tell their stories. I hope that in telling our stories we can help more women see the beauty in birth rather than the fear.
I’d like to introduce you to our first brave Mama! Her name is Kat and she had a very exciting homebirth! It was fast, intense, so real, and beautiful. I so relate to her story because when I planned my birth I imagined I would be quiet and peaceful and was surprised at how not peaceful or quiet I was! I asked Kat a couple questions about her birth and I just loved what she had to say! I’m going to include our little email interview below her story so you can enjoy her answers. Before I give away anymore details here is her story and a couple lovely photos
Hazel's Birth Story By Kat Huston
I admit I was not prepared for labor and some language may be offensive to some. Sorry in advance. Oh and I know I have forgotten a lot of details.
My husband and I had been trying for a child since early 2010. Every month without fail my period would be late (that's even with recalculating my cycle). So every month I would end up peeing on a stick just to see if it was positive. It was always negative and the day after I would take the test my period would begin. By 2012 we just got in a habit of checking with or without him home. Well on March 24th 2012 my husband was away for drill with the army. I woke up in the middle of the night with the urge to pee, so since I was late I decided to take the test. It was POSITIVE! So I sent him a picture message of the test and eagerly awaited a response, mind you the text was sent at 3:59am.
Our sweet little one was due on November 24th 2012.
I was at my 37 week appointment on November 5th 2012, I was measuring normal and my little ones heartbeat was strong. We started talking about what to expect during labor but I didn't want to hear it. I wanted to think it would be peaceful and beautiful. My midwives said I need to start thinking about it since I only had a few weeks left. They told us I probably had another week before my belly dropped and a week beyond that before my water would break. We left there excited and ready for what was to come in the following weeks.
That same night I woke up with a great urge to pee and tried to fight it. I stayed in bed for another 20 minutes before I knew I had to get up. Thinking back to it I let out a lot of water in that bathroom break, we think this is when my water broke. I tried to go back to bed but woke up every so often with a strong pain in my back.
I started to think I was just getting sick. So in the morning I called in to work and told them I was going to stay home sick and get some sleep. My mom called me shortly after and I told her about my back being in pain and she immediately told me “you are in back labor, call your midwife now”. Well I listened and called my midwife telling her I didn't think I was in labor and I would keep in contact with them. Well after all the calls were made my husband woke up and asked why I was still home, I told him I wasn't feeling well and called in sick. We started talking and he figured he should go grocery shopping just in case. The midwives kept in contact with him through out the day asking if he thought I was in labor. His response was something along the lines of 'I don't know, that's why we pay you to tell us if she is'. My sister in law came over while my husband was out to help clean up the house, while he was gone my pain started to worsen. I felt like I had a horrible ovarian cyst! She started to apply pressure where my pain was and that helped a little. Well my midwife arrived around noon to make sure I didn't have an infection. All I remember of her arrival is she kept saying 'do you want me to check you?' I didn't want to answer, I wasn't ready to be in labor. Well she decided it was time to check me and all she said was “You’re really far along”. Well being as I was so early the birth tub had not been dropped off at my house yet, so they filled the bath tub in hopes I could labor in there.
My husband and I went to the bathroom and I got in the tub trying to relax and I just couldn't I kept feeling like I had to poo. So I asked everyone to leave the room so I could try. Well at some point I took my glasses off so everything I saw was a giant blur. As I was sitting on the toilet I saw some strange stuff in the tub but ignored it. Then I felt something down there and looked. All I saw was a bloody mess. I started yelling for anyone to come tell me what I couldn't really see. Well they said it was time and I needed to move off the toilet and to the bedroom. They laid me on the bed and all I remember was I was in the worst pain in my life while I was on my back. I stopped progressing while I was on my back and my midwife thought we should try sitting on the toilet again in hopes it would get things going again. I took two steps toward the bathroom and stopped with the intense urge to start pushing. I remember I kept saying 'shit' over and over again. That is not how I wanted to birth but it happened. I was crouched at the end of my bed holding my husbands legs as I would push with each contraction. I remember asking if I had to push 3 times for each contraction and them telling me I did. I don't remember getting oxygen but my husband told me they gave it to me. I remember hearing at some point that the babies heart rate was dropping but I can't remember at what point they said this. My husband was then asked if he wanted to catch the baby and he moved from in front of me to behind me so he could catch. One of my midwives took his place in front of me so I could hold on to her arms. The next thing I know I was being handed my little girl and moved to the bed. I couldn't believe it was over so fast. My little girl arrived at 2:16pm on November 6th 2012, she was 5lb 13oz and 18in. I felt like everything was so surreal for the following few weeks. It all started to feel real around Christmas was life started calming down a little.
1) What led you to choose a home birth?
My husband and I do not agree with the way hospitals treat pregnancy, we are not sick! There is no medical need to force a baby out of the womb just because it doesn't fit the hospitals time schedule. I also did not want a bunch of people I didn't know walking around looking at me. I wanted a private affair for my daughters birth, just my husband, my midwives and me.
2) What and how did you feel when you first held you baby?
When my daughter was born and my husband handed her to me I was still in a state of denial. I kept thinking this isn't real, I'm dreaming and I'm still pregnant. But I loved her, I loved everything about her she was so small and sweet. She was and is perfect in my eyes. I don't think reality hit me that she was really here until Christmas time. That is when I looked at my daughter and was just in 'ah' and there was my little girl. She was really here, I wasn't dreaming,
3) Was labor as horrible and painful as the media or the general population makes it out to be?
My labor was nothing like media portrays, while my contractions were painful I honestly thought I just had an infection. It was an amazing experience for me overall. In fact the labor was my favorite part of my pregnancy, I can't wait for number two just for that moment.
4) Anything else you would like to share about yourself?
Most everyone around us disapproved of our decision to have a home birth, but we did not let it scare us. This is what we wanted for our daughter, I wanted my daughter to enter this world as peacefully as possible.