A couple of months ago I had the opportunity to help one of my favorite types of births, a VBAC. For me there is always so much emotion involved in births, but after this one I just felt really proud. She was so strong and did everything she needed to do. She believed in herself and put all her doubts behind. Here’s her take on that special day.
On the morning our daughter was born, my water broke at 6:30 am. I was excited and told my husband, “Looks like we are having a baby today or tomorrow!” We had been hoping and praying I could have a short labor and a VBAC since my first baby was born by Cesarean. After my water broke, I did some last minute preparations but did not yet have contractions, only feelings of crampiness. I decided to take a brisk walk in hopes that labor would begin. Soon after I returned from my walk around 11 am, contractions started five minutes apart. I called our doula, Jackie, but since the contractions were not difficult, we agreed to call her back when labor had progressed.
Labor progressed faster than we thought, and while I took a shower, contractions became three minutes apart. As I got ready, they became more intense and I kept calling my husband to rub my back through contractions. I was most comfortable on my hands and knees during contractions. We decided to call Jackie and our midwives, who told us to head to the hospital.
When we arrived at 2:30 pm, I remember the nurse commented “looks like you are in active labor!” Yes, contractions were strong and two minutes apart. Jackie and my husband rubbed my back vigorously while I rolled on the labor ball through contractions. Jackie was also a big emotional support, telling me I was doing a good job and reminding me that my baby would arrive soon. I was glad she was there since the midwife from my practice was delayed at another birth and did not arrive until after the baby was born!
When I started having the urge to push, the hospital doctor checked me and said I was 9 centimeters dilated and could push whenever I felt ready. This part was very painful for me and I had difficulty finding a comfortable position. After several very hard contractions, the doctor suggested I lean back, hold my legs, and give a huge push. Soon after, I pushed with all my might, and out came our baby!
Baby L was born at 4:30 pm only two hours after we arrived at the hospital. I was so surprised how quickly she was born, that I screamed louder than she did! She nursed well right away and I was so happy our prayers were answered and I was able to have a natural, VBAC delivery.