The Birth Story of Nicolas “Nico” – Born Feb. 6, 2010 at 3:06AM 8lbs 21 inches.
An amazing testament to the natural birthing process and how it can be supported! Katie – You Rock!
It was the day before my expected delivery date, Thursday Feb. 5th. Magi, my dear beautiful friend, arrived the previous day hoping to be at the birth. We met while working at Holy Family Birth Center in south Texas. She also happens to be a midwife! Anyway, Magi and I along with her adorable daughter Tavi went on a long walk that morning. Then, we went back to the apartment to get Joaquin (my husband) and headed out to eat some Dominican food. On my way to lunch, I started feeling like I was having contractions, but was unsure of myself. I wasn’t sure if in my mind I was making it up in my head. I kept asking Magi what a contraction felt like. Magi explained at best what a contraction felt like to her. She also suggested that we continue on with our day like it was a normal day. So we headed off to Babies R Us to return something and it was then that I said to Magi and Joaquin, “ Ok, these are contractions”. They were 10 minutes apart at that point. So we went to the apartment to just relax and hang out. I had not slept the night before, so I was already feeling exhausted. I called my midwife just to give her a heads up that I felt like I was going into early labor. She suggested eating a good dinner and glass of wine and sleep, sleep, sleep. We had a nice dinner and I drank a glass of wine in attempt to relax and go to sleep while dealing with the contractions. I then took a bath, which actually woke me up rather than help me sleep. Nonetheless, I went to bed and really never slept. Joaquin stayed up with me most of the night and tried different massage techniques to help me relax or deal with the pain. I also would go out to the living room and bug Magi with questions or just unload anxiety.
The morning finally came and it was Friday. My contractions became closer together at this point, but were still 5-7 minutes apart. I tried to relax by taking a bath to cope with the pain. I also reviewed my materials from my childbirth class or any of my books, which really did not change how I was going to prepare at this point. I think it was more of a mental thing to relieve any anxiety. The day went by just hanging out in the apartment. Joaquin asked a couple times, “When are we going to the hospital?” I think he was nervous at the same time. I kept looking at Magi with a look of exhaustion and she could tell. Around 5PM, I said to Magi, “I don’t know how much longer I can do this.” I was feeling so tired. Two nights of no sleep and the contractions…I just felt exhausted. I kept thinking to myself…when am I going to have contractions close together. Around 5PM, I called my midwife to update her on my status. She informed that I should call her back once my contractions are 3-5 minutes apart! Really!!! I was so ready to go in, but I had to wait.
Magi could sense that I was feeling exhausted and starting to feel hopeless. She offered to check me (since she is a midwife). So, she did! And thank god she did….I was 7cm!!!! Yeah! I was so happy, because I really thought at this point that I was only 4 cm.
It was about 9:30PM and I called my midwife to let her know that I was ready. I did not mention that Magi checked me, but did explain that my contractions were the same, but I felt ready to come in. She told me that I could come in, but if I was 2cm…she would have to send me home. Thankfully, I knew that I was not 2cm…so I felt confident about going in. 🙂
We arrived at the hospital around 10:15PM. We went up to the Labor and Delivery floor. Oh yeah…did I mention that the birth center happened to be closed the weekend of my “due dute” to refinish the floors. Yeah, I found out that Wednesday and was somewhat devastated. But I tried not to let this bother me and Joaquin reminded me that what mattered most is a healthy baby!
I was submitting my paperwork to be admitted. I see my midwife arrive and smile at her. She said to me, “your smiling” which suggested to me that she was unsure if I was in active labor. I think this might have been my coping mechanism and I also wanted to feel in control. Anyway, she checked me and yeahhhhhhhh….I was 8cm!!!! She said to me, “you fooled me!” I joked with her and said, “so does this mean I can stay?!”
After she checked me, the nurse had to do some heart monitoring and other things for about 30 minutes. When she finished, I got in the Jacuzzi to cope with my contractions. The warm water was great. Magi and Joaquin along with my midwife were checking on me. Joaquin was loving his video option on his new ipod. I am not sure if I was loving that option. Eventually, I wanted to get out and move around. My contractions were still 5 minutes apart. Sandy, my midwife, recommended getting on the birth ball. Magi was massaging my back while Joaquin stroked my arms. I could hear Sandy saying “relax.” Then we decided to move around in the hallway. Magi and Sandy were on each side of me and we did some kind of walking dance down the hallway. Sandy guided us in this technique and let me say that it was wonderful. We also did some squats in between the walks and I LOVED it. The squats made all the pain seem so manageable. Sandy said she liked doing this walk with women, because it helps the baby get in better position. After we went back in the room, the contractions felt closer and I was leaning on Magi for support! AND boy was she some kind of support! As a contraction would begin, I would lean on her. I did this for some time. I could say 15 minutes now, but it could have been longer then. Haha. It seems like time flew by looking back.
I was back on the birth ball at this point, because I felt like it helped the baby get lower. So, I stayed on her for awhile. Then, Sandy decided to check me. She checked me and told me, “it’s time to push.” I thought to myself, “oh my god, this is it!” So, I started pushing. Joaquin was on one side and Magi on the other. My midwife and nurse were at the end of the bed. I pushed for what seems like 30 minutes. What I remember is thinking to myself that I couldn’t do it towards the final pushes. It felt like it was never going to end. My midwife told me that he head was there, but I thought when is he coming out if his head was there. As I pushed and pushed, Sandy kept coaching me. At the time, I felt like she wanted me to push on one try and get the baby out, but looking back she motivated me to keep going and pushing. The baby was almost here. My midwife broke my water and it felt like only a couple pushes away from my son’s arrival. Magi kept talking to me so sweetly and reminding me that my baby was almost here with me. She said, “Katie, he has hair!” This made it all seem so real. Joaquin continued to stroke me and provide support throughout his wide-eyed looks of joy at me. He looked so excited that our son was almost here. And then, he was there with us! What joy! There is nothing that can describe the rush and overwhelming feeling of love! My son was there with me on my stomach and I remember just looking at him thinking to myself that this is so amazing and that he was beautiful! Words cannot describe this feeling.
Nicolas was born February 6, 2010 at 3:06AM to the proud parents of Katie and Joaquin! I thank Sandy, Magi, and Joaquin the nurse who were all so wonderful and important during my labor. My labor lasted 37 hours with no drugs, but it was all so worth it. And yes, I would do it again! I also thank the other midwifes Cori and Susannah who were so important during my prenatal visits as well as Gillian, my childbirth educator. She taught me some techniques and empowered me in preparing this experience.