S and D started prenatal care at the start of their second pregnancy. S had her previous baby with me at home in January 2014 that you can read the story here. S learned the hard way that your fertility really is increased after having a baby! The first trimester was full of shock and adjustments, but over the months things progressed along normally and S began to get excited as she was about to have her first girl. On April 1, 5 days before S’s estimated due date, S text me that morning in a panic. Her mucus plug was falling out in chunks in her bathroom, and she was beginning to have some cramps in her back. I encouraged her it was all good signs and she should stay hydrated and nourished and go for a walk. Later that afternoon S came over for an exam to see where she was at. S cracked me up as she sat in my office and told me, “I think my baby is April Foolsing me!” She was 4cm dilated, 80% effaced and baby was engaged at a 0 station. A membrane sweep was done, with bloody show seen on the glove. I told S to go home and take a nap, because knowing her labor history, I imagined it would be a long night. Contractions continued on through the evening, coming closer and a little stronger, but completely manageable. I went to sleep around 9:30 and told S to call me as soon as things shifted and she needed me. 11:30pm, S called me. S and I have a pretty good relationship and I could tell something had shifted. She was feeling panicky and alone. We talked for a few minutes, and I decided I would be coming over and seeing what was going on. I arrived a little after midnight and found S to be 5-6cm and 100% effaced. Contractions were coming every 3-4 minutes, lasting a minute. I encouraged S to call her doula over, and she turned on the Duggars to watch as she labored. I think she saw all of 5 minutes of it! S was leaning back in her recliner, cringing with contractions. Her back was hurting so I encouraged her to try hands and knees position for three contractions to see if it would help.
S going into herself to get through the contractions.
Over the next couple of hours, contractions picked up. S tried sitting in the bath tub for a few contractions. Then moved to laying on her side, to the birth ball and then back to hands and knees. S has an urge to move when she contracts, and it was beautiful watching her move and do instinctually what her body needed her to do.
Encouraging S through the surges… that she was strong, powerful…
At 230am, S asked to be checked. She was now 7-8cm, with a bulgy bag of water. I encouraged S that she was doing so well and moving along at a perfect speed. Nausea was rolling in with transition. S continued to rapidly change her position. She tried kneeling, then leaning over her bed, laying on her sides. She became much more vocal through contractions. After one particular contraction, S looked at me and said, “I really don’t want to do this home birth anymore. I only wanted a home birth because I love you Shannon.” D, her doula and I all took turns comforting her through contractions. As 3am neared, S moved to floor and laid on her side. She asked for her phone and began searching on you tube in between contractions for music to help her focus. S layed there, focusing on the lyrics of “While I’m Waiting” and “How He Loves” as she worked through some tough contractions. At 330, S moved to the toilet and then moved to laboring in the shower, the warm water beating on her back. Within minutes, she was out pacing the house. Squatting through a contraction, then standing and moaning. She couldn’t stay still. She threw herself onto the bed, but wasn’t comfortable. Having worked with S before, I knew we had to be close to baby time because she was now naked and couldn’t sit still, classic cues for S! As 4am neared, contractions were coming every 3 minutes, lasting 90 seconds and were strong. S tried the shower again, then fell onto her bed. At 415, S jumped from her bed and slammed into the floor, and began grunting. I did an exam and found her to be 10cm dilated and baby at a +2 station. I told S if she was ready she could start pushing. S pushed for a couple contractions on her side on the floor. I told her I didn’t think it was working, so she moved into a squat to push. With S’s previous birth, things got quite messy with all her movement, so we had well prepared for S’s need to move by having a number of shower curtains and towels to try to keep the blood at a minimum. When S moved to a squat, we quickly threw a shower curtain down on the floor. S only stayed in the squat for a moment before moving into the bed. She got in a semi reclining position to push. S kept saying she wanted to push Kinsley out like she pushed out B, her first baby, and kept falling back onto her back. After a few pushed, I told S I didn’t think she was pushing effectively, and she jumped up and began squatting next to her closet, which was tight quarters for all. The head was starting to sit on the perineum at this point. S decided she didn’t like it, and laid flat on her back for a push before jumping up again and moving to the end of the bed to squat. At 503 we could see the amniotic sac bulging out of the perineum. Our excitement of a possible caul birth was short lived when he water ruptured a minute later. Immediately, the head began to crown and was birthed as S grunted and pushed in a squat position. At 5:07am, S pushed one final time and birthed her sweet girl earthside. S stood up and took her sweet girl into her arms, and immediately sat on her bed, taking her sweet girl in. Welcome to the world sweet Kinsley, born on April 2, 2015 at 5:07am weighing in at 7lbs 14ozs, 20.75″ long. I am still so proud of how well S did, conquering her fears again of the pain and having her second beautiful home birth. Another goal S conquered was breastfeeding. Breastfeeding did not last long the first time, and S wanted to breastfeed longer this time. Kinsley latched well at birth and S is still breastfeeding at six weeks postpartum. I am very proud of her for working hard towards making her goal a reality. Photos taken by the lovely and talented Stephanie Shirley.