Friday, April 3, 2015 My due date comes and goes with no baby. By my actual due date, I already felt impatient and a week overdue because I’d assumed that Cy would be born early since Jaye was early. Monday, April 6, 2015 At my midwife appointment today, Teri and I talked about my concerns with being late and when the baby would happen. I didn’t mind being a week late, but every day longer I went, I became more worried about being overdue leading to being induced or more medical interventions. Teri was totally reassuring and not concerned about me needing an induction. She was confident that labor would get started on its own and also told me about the midwife tricks up her sleeve. She offered to strip my membranes but reassured me that it wasn’t necessary at this point. However, I decided to give it a shot and see if things started going. I had a chiropractor adjustment that afternoon as well. And by evening, I was having some light contractions and feeling hopeful. But on Tuesday morning, I woke up and had not a single contraction all day long. Wednesday April 8, 2015 7:45 am I woke up and decided to sneak in a shower since I didn’t hear Jaye stirring yet. While I was showering and getting dressed, I had a couple contractions that felt pretty for real. 8:45 am By the time Jaye was ready for school, my contractions were more frequent and intense enough that Phil drove Jaye while I stayed home. 9:45 am When Phil came home, we wnt for a walk around the block, started timing contractions and called the midwives. I talked to Teri on the phone. She asked how far apart my contractions were and could I talk through them. My contractions were 8-10 minutes apart at this point. Phil and I both sent a last work email and started feeling like today might really be the day. I decided to try to lie down for a rest. 10:45 am My contractions were getting stronger. It was becoming hard to time them because they all ran together with not much break in between. Also, I started feeling nauseous and vomiting. We call the midwife back and decide to head to the birth center. I had planned to take an “on-the-way!” last maternity photo, but, of course at the time, the only thing on my mind was getting through the next contraction. 11:30 am We arrived at the Allen Birthing Center. Teri said she wanted to check my progress in the exam room downstairs first before we got settled into a birthing suite. But after talking to me for a few minutes, she decided we should head straight upstairs. I was about 4 or 5 centimeters dialated. I remember mixed feelings about this at the time. My contractions were so intense that I felt I should be much further along, but on the other hand, 5 is halfway there. This portion of the birth was pretty hard. It was so hard to relax. Teri encouraged me, smoothing out my forehead and saying, “Let your uterus be the only tight muscle in your body.” I also remember her telling me to surrender to the process and focusing on that was helpful. I labored lying on the bed for awhile and tried to focus on relaxing and using the Hypnobabies techniques, but the contractions felt so non-stop that it was hard to have a break to think about relaxing and preparing for the next one. I remember thinking, “This is why people get epidurals.” Around noon, the birthing tub was filled up and I got into it, which felt SO much better. I leaned forward against the side of the tub. Phil pressed hard on my lower back during the contractions. My mom had arrived almost right after we got to the birth center. My dad arrived while I was in the tub and came in to say hi briefly. Soon, I started to feel the need to push. I mentioned it to Teri, thinking it couldn’t be that time yet, but she didn’t even blink. As I was pushing, Teri used a mirror to check on baby Cy’s progress. I remember asking her (maybe pleading or begging would be more accurate), “He’s coming soon, right?” Teri assured me he was and said I could reach down and feel his head. Teri suggested that I change positions to lean back against Phil instead of leaning forward on the tub. I did that and the next contraction was super strong. I remember vocalizing (nice birthing euphemism for screaming) pretty loudly. Teri encouraged me not to waste that energy/breath but instead to use it and direct it downward into pushing. 12:47 pm So I did. And Cy was born with the next contraction. Teri lifted him onto my chest. He had dark hair and lots of vernix all over and he was perfect. My dad said he had texted my brother around 12:45 after I shouted to pray for me. Then texted 2 minutes later that baby Cy was born. We snuggled on the bed for a long time. Under a million blankets because I felt so cold and couldn’t stop shaking. I don’t think the midwifes cut the cord for at least 20 minutes. Cy nursed and snuggled some more. I remember that I kept saying, “That was so hard.” I delivered the placenta. And Teri confirmed that I’d had a 2nd degree tear. She called Leslie, the midwife who is the reconstruction expert, who came in even though it was her day off to make sure I was perfectly stitched up. I got local anesthetic for that part, so it didn’t hurt. It was still kind of uncomfortable and I just felt so emotional and ready to be DONE. After everything was finally done, Cy had his exam. He weighed 7 lbs and 13 oz. And was declared perfectly healthy (Minus his lip tie and tongue tie issues). 2:30 pm At this point, my mom had returned with Jaye from school. Phil went downstairs and carried her up. Here she is seeing her baby brother for the very first time. Her first reaction was pretty quiet. But she warmed up to him quickly and was eager to hold him. After Jaye met Cy, the rest of my family came up. My parents had met him right after he was born, but came back now with my sisters Lillian and Lucy. There was much cooing and baby snuggles. Then we ate Schlotzky’s. My parents left around 5 to take Jaye home. Teri, my midwife, is also an experienced lactation consultant. She came in to talk to me about breastfeeding and coach me on Cy’s latch. It was great to have this breastfeeding coaching and support from the beginning. Then Phil and I took Cy home for the first time. We were home by 7:30 pm, only 12 hours after my first contraction. Overall, Cy’s birth was very different from Jaye’s. it was intense and more painful. It has taken longer afterward to feel like myself again. But I’m also very proud of his birth. And VERY happy with Allen Birth Center and the wonderful midwives and nurses there. Overall, after Cy was born I’ve been continually overwhelmed with happiness that he’s here on the outside now.