Thursday, August 9, 2012

Zoie's Beautiful Homebirth

Zoie Claire Ellsworth
Born July 4th, 2012
at 4:09 am
9 Lbs 23.25 inches

***Sorry long story, pictures at the bottom

I was so incredibly lucky to have to most beautiful homebirth anyone could ever hope for. I knew from my birth experience with Bella I would be able to have a natural unmedicated birth. I was hoping for it to go fast since Bella’s birth was under 7 hours. There was a lot of stuff happening around my due date so I was hoping Zoie would decide to come early. But Bella was 8 days late so I didn’t think it would really happen. Around 28 weeks, to help my body move along, I began drinking as much red raspberry leaf tea as I could 2-4 cups a day. At 34 weeks I started taking evening primrose oil, 1000mg and bumped it up to 3000mg a day at 38 weeks.  I started taking Birth Prep (a combination of different herbs to help your body prepare for labor) at 36 weeks.  After I finished my birth prep I used homeopathy for a couple of days provided by my midwife.  These are all things to help your body prepare for labor and will never induce you unless you are ready. 

 I had been having cramping for a couple weeks and a couple Braxton hicks here and there but nothing consistent. I went in for my midwife appoint at 39w 3d on July 3rd. Everything was moving along great, I was 3cm, 70% efface, station +1(which was awesome! I was at station 0 when I started pushing with Bella so she was already lower and I hadn’t even started labor yet).  I had a Bishop score of 11 out of 13, this is used to figure how ready your body is, you have to at least be a 6 to be induced. So this was all great news. Since I was only a couple days away from my due date I asked my midwife to sweep my membranes. Normally I wouldn’t suggest such a thing unless necessary but with all the family stuff happening, I needed to get this baby out.

After my membranes were swept I didn’t feel any different, I was hoping to have a bloody show or start having contractions but no. As the day went on I began to feel cramping but nothing to suggest labor would be starting soon. I did tons of research on membrane sweeping and knew it could take 48 hours to be effective. I also did tons of research on full moons, because it was a full moon the night of July 3rd. I guess more woman go into the labor when it’s a full moon.  I got a fortune about a week and a half before that said “Luck will come to you on the next full moon”. I found out if I run around my house… outside… naked… or go swimming in the ocean under the moonlight it is supposed to induce labor when it’s a full moon. But I didn’t do any of those.  

I got ready for bed and was telling Greg all the things we need to do tomorrow like go on a long walk and the festivities we had going on. Nothing strong was happening to make me think I was going to have a baby in a couple hours, so I went to sleep. I woke up a couple hours later at 1am because I needed to go pee (surprise, surprise, that’s always the case). I checked for a bloody show but still nothing, however I was noticing contractions but they weren’t consistent. I decided to download a contraction counter app to use (which is so awesome and convenient!) .  I laid down and was feeling some contractions so I started listening to my hypnobabies. I wanted to relax and go back to sleep and hypnobabies always does the trick. Well after 30 minutes I still couldn’t fall asleep and then Bella woke up. I normally do not check on Bella in the middle of the night and let her cry herself back to sleep but I felt I should check on her. I didn’t know when her sister was going to come but thought it could be in the next day or two. I wanted to spend a few moments snuggling; I didn’t know how much longer she would be my only child. I laid down with Bella for probably 20 minutes and was becoming more aware of my contractions. I was using my hypnobabies techniques and started looking at the clock to see how close together they were. They were still kind of far apart but at 2:06 I couldn’t lay down anymore. I put Bella back in her crib and knew I was going to have a baby soon. But I had no idea how soon. I was thinking probably sometime in the next 5-7 hours.

I went into my bedroom, started listening to my birthing time track. I was standing up swaying during my contractions. At 2:30 am Greg stirred and woke up, he asked “Are you ok?” I answered, “Yeah, I am fine. Things are started to happen just so you know. But you can go back to sleep and I will wake you up when I need you.” Well Greg didn’t go back to sleep he was just watching me as I was timing my contractions. I was going to wait till 3:00 am to call the midwife. I only started timing my contractions 15 minutes prior and I wanted to have a good idea how long they lasted and how far apart they were. Well at 2:45 am I told Greg to call the midwife and doula, which was a really good idea. As Greg was talking to our midwife, Andy, he asked how far apart the contractions were and how long they were lasting. They were 2-3 mins apart, lasting 45 sec- 60 sec. It got pretty intense really fast. (Andy told me after Zoie was born that when Greg told her about my contractions she was putting her clothes on while talking on the phone. She checked me earlier that day and knew it was going to happen fast).

While I was waiting for Andy to come I got in the shower. It felt so nice to have warm water on my back. During some of the contractions I would lean up against the wall and sway or I was on all fours swaying with the water on my back. I was getting really tired; I decided to get out and try to lie down for a little while. On my way back to my bed Greg “danced” with me (He held me during some contractions and it was like we were slow dancing). I was laying down on my left side on the bed and it was surprising comfortable for a little while. I was in my deepest state of hypnosis during this time and it helped me stay relaxed and calm. Greg asked me if I wanted my mom to come, we had decided earlier not to have anyone there besides the midwife and doula, but Greg knew I wanted my mom to come. Greg called my mom at 3:15am and she was going to come right over.

Andy probably got there around 3:20ish along with the assistant and my doula, Aracely. They were getting everything set up and filling up the tub. I was planning on having a water birth. I labored in the tub most of the time when I gave birth to Bella so I knew I would really like it this time. As soon as the water was deep enough to make a difference, I got in. Greg got some cold wash cloths to put on my forehead which felt really nice. After my first contraction in the tub it wasn’t as comfortable as I hoped for. But I was thinking I just need to get in a deeper state of hypnosis. I kind of got out of it as I was moving from my bedroom to the bathroom and didn’t have a chance to get back to where I was. During my next contraction Greg was getting something and Aracely was getting something so I was alone. And my goodness it was not comfortable. It was the only time I was mad cause I had no one there to help keep me calm but I got through it. The next contraction came and I said “Get me out, get me out” and I jumped up. I wanted out of the bath tub so bad. It was so uncomfortable! So I stood up and leaned against the bathroom counter swaying back and forth. Greg and Aracely put pressure on my back and Aracely was pushing my hips together. It felt so nice, it was the best thing I could have asked for. 

Meanwhile Andy, the midwife, and her assistant were behind me getting all set up. I, of course, did not realize this was going on. Greg let me know when my mom got there, otherwise I would not have noticed. At about 3:50 I felt like I needed to push and I let Andy know. She decided to check me for the first time since she arrived. I was fully effaced and 9.5 cm. Wahoo!!! I could not believe it. Andy said we can just wait for my body to dilate completely or she could help my cervix along with the next contraction. I opted for her help, I was ready to get the baby out. Andy helped push my cervix back with the next contraction and said I could start with little pushes if I wanted to. Since I wasn’t complete yet, I couldn’t give “real” pushes. I started pushing while I was still standing up during a couple contractions and then I moved down to a squatting position during a couple. I was so exhausted that I laid down on my side but once a contraction came I said, “I can’t this anymore, I need to change positions”. I lifted my body up and pushed on all fours. So I pushed for a couple minutes then out came my baby girl at 4:09am. Only 1 hour 30 mins of active labor and 3 hours total, I was shocked!

When she came out everyone asked what her name was and I said Liberty, cause it was 4th of July. Everyone thought I was serious till I said I was joking.  She also came out sucking her thumb, so Andy was surprise she came out so fast and easily. When she was born I was full of joy, she was finally here and I couldn’t believe it was only 4 in the morning. I felt like I had just woken up with weak contractions. I held her on my chest and just savored the moment of her being here. Greg was able to cut the cord, he did the whole thing while Andy walked him through it.  I nursed her for the first time and we got to spend probably an hour together with Greg right next to me. My wonderful doula made me a delicious breakfast and I while I was eating they decided to get our Baby girls measurements. Zoie weighed 9 lbs and 23.25 inches. I could not believe it! I had no idea I had such a big baby inside of my belly. I had no tearing, it didn't even feel like I had a baby. (I never had to use a peri bottle when I when pee) After she was weighed I got up and took a shower. It was an amazing shower. After I laid down in my bed and it wasn’t even 6 am yet.  

My midwife team left around 6 am and it was just the 3 of us, but not for very long. Bella woke up at 6:30am and met her little sister for the first time. She wasn’t sure what to think at first and then took no interest in her new sister and wanted to watch TV instead. But later on that day you could tell Bella loved her little sister.  

It took us about a day to figure and decide on the name. We were debating between Zoie and Scarlet, we obviously decided on Zoie. She just didn’t look like a Scarlet to me or Greg. Then it took another day to figure out her middle name, which is Claire. 

I am so thankful for everyone who helped me achieve the perfect birth, I am so lucky and it could not have gone any better. I am so glad I had my baby at home, it is so so nice! I loved not having to leave to go to the hospital and never having to leave Bella overnight. I think it helped Bella transition instead of wondering where mommy and daddy are and then coming home with this new thing that takes all of mommy’s time. I will definitely be having the rest of my babies at home, I probably wouldn’t even make it to the hospital anyways!

Words cannot describe the feelings you have when bringing a child into this world. I honestly cannot describe the instant love, the feelings of family and motherhood, knowing that I am now responsible for this sweet life that came from my Heavenly Father. I am so thankful for the blessings of eternal families and the knowledge I have in knowing I can be with my sweet little family forever. 

Right after Zoie was born

Joy, happiness and the sense of relief that labor is over
Admiring our baby girl

Greg with his new daughter
We just love her
I am just happy

We cannot believe how big she is!
This is how she came out, sucking her thumb!

Beautiful Princess Zoie

Bella isn't sure what she is looking at

So funny!

Now Bella is smiling and starting to like her


The Mathews said...

Can't wait to see more pictures of the two of them together.

Mandy said...

What a beautiful story, Ali. Congrats again!