Friday, 7 March 2014

Sweet baby Quinn!!

In the oven:
When Shaun and I learned that we were going to have little Quinn in our lives, we were ecstatic! I went straight into planning mode, and for those of you that know me, I take this state of mind very seriously :] I did my best to eat all organic, drank prenatal tea, hiked daily, etc. all to the point of stress.  I wanted to do every thing I could to make sure he was getting the nutrition & best atmosphere he could have. 
As much as I am glad I took his well-being so seriously, I needed to take a chill pill for reals.  Shaun and I had a backpacking trip planned for the Weminuche Wilderness, CO that summer and we decided to let that be our babymoon.  Before we began our trek, I read that being out of breathe to the point of not being able to talk can cause deformities in babies… I’m sure y’all can imagine what hiking 25 miles in 3 days in the CO mountains would be like when you thought you couldn’t be out of breathe!  All I can say is, I am so grateful to have a patient husband.  Haha!
After returning from our babymoon, we had our first in-depth appointment with our midwives at the Family Birth Center.  I knew that I wanted a natural birth after watching the Business of Being Born but I did not trust how capable I was mentally and physically of giving birth naturally until I began to work with Amber, Galyn, & Stephanie.  They not only eased my stress from my first few meetings with them by encouraging me to trust my body & assuring me that Quinn is getting everything he needs, but they provided me with the resources I needed to embrace my pregnancy & birth.  They suggested books such as Spiritual Midwifery, Birth Matters, & the Birth Book by Sears.  Along with reading about positive birth stories, Shaun and I were able to take a birth class with Stephanie where we could explore all options, address our fears,  get knowledge of the birth process & most importantly, she gave Shaun techniques to help me relax as well as emphasized his role in the birth process.. Which I am incredibly grateful for post-birth.
Down to the nitty-gritty:
Our little love was due on February 11th and on his due date, he still hadn’t dropped or given signs to ensure us that he was soon to arrive besides mild contractions at night.  I did my best to remind myself that Quinn was coming when he was ready but Momma sure was getting anxious!  On the day of the 12th, I went on a two mile hike in determination to get our little nugget moving and sure enough, I started getting contractions periodically.  Around that time, Shaun called to tell me that he felt sick at work, went to the doctor, was diagnosed with flu-like symptoms and had 101.5 fever… gosh darnit! I wanted my contractions to stop right away.  I tried to ignore them but through the evening they just got worse & more frequent.. Quinn was on his way.  Shaun’s fever had broken around 7pm and the doctor said that if he didn’t have fever for 24 hours, he wouldn’t be contagious.  We were hoping for the best.
The midwives told us to give them a call when I was having 1 minute contractions, 5 minutes apart, for an hour and around 3 am it was time to call them!  They had me come in at 9:30 am to check everything and I walked in with a smile, ready to get our little guy out!  The room smelled of lavender, was warm and candlelit with relaxing Irish music playing… such a comforting atmosphere.  They checked me for dilation & I was dilated 2 cm… they had to send me home (legally, I have to progress every 4 hours or they have to send me to the hospital.. I understood but still, that irish music and lavender…) They told me to give them a call if my water broke or contractions were unbearable.
Around 2pm I thought that my water had broken!  Shaun gave them a call and they said that they would most likely have me come in at 5 but to call back at 3.  At that point, my contractions were very painful & I was ready to go back to that candlelit room!  For those of you that know Shaun, he’s a very polite guy and despite knowing how bad I wanted to be there, said that that sounded great. Grrr.  I was getting antsy and turning into a grumplestiltskin.  When he called back at 3 he emphasized my pain & desire to birth at the Family Birth Center and they told us to come in! phew!
When I came in, they said I looked much more like I was in labor.  I guess my smile wasn’t as painless! haha. I was at 4 cm dilated and my waterbag was leaking but did not break.. I thought it seemed different than the movies…  Anywhoo,  I labored from the ball, to the stool, to the bed, back to the ball, then to the toilet, then to the ball, the to the stool, for about 2 and a half hours.  Shaun was messaging my back and encouraging me the whole time & the midwives would check in on us every once in a while.  Having that privacy & relaxing atmosphere was ideal for easing the tension.  At 6:45 my water officially broke and good golly, it was definitely like the movies! 
After my water broke, I went straight into transition and I am incredibly grateful that this is typically the shortest part of labor with the most promising name.  Transition was the point where I told myself I wasn’t going to have any more kids and would totally get an epidural if someone asked (so happy I wasn’t at a hospital) while moaning through the “discomfort.”  This was not at all how I thought I would handle this stage of my birth.  I had read stories of smiling through contractions and how contractions can even be orgasmic! Although I am sure both are possible with an incredibly strong mind, I didn’t get to that point. 
Shaun, Galyn, and Stephanie were such a strength and blessing during transition.  They were messaging me while letting me squeeze the life out of their hands and telling me how strong I was.  Without them, getting through that stage would have been much more difficult. 
Once I was at 7 cm dilation, I was able to get into the tub and that was such a relief!  The warm water took a lot of the pain away & I knew that I was that much closer to meeting our little man.  It was amazing to be in my body throughout the whole process because without the contractions building in strength and transition feeling so intolerable, I wouldn’t have been near as mentally prepared to push Quinn out.  Around 9 pm, I had my first urge to push and man, was I serious!  Shaun said I looked like Arnold Schwarzenegger in Total recall. Hahaha!  I felt like him too.. strong, determined and down for business.
I pushed for about 45 minutes and must have nearly tore Shaun & Galyn’s limbs off with my incredible strength ;] but they were still by my side telling me how strong I was and well I was doing (so grateful for them!)  When Quinn was almost out they saw that his hand was right by his head & Galyn, with her mad midwifery skills, wrapped his arm around his head to ease the push. By this time, Shaun’s fever had broken for 26 hours and he was able to pull Quinn out!  Our love child went straight into my arms!  A feeling of ecstasy rushed over me and all I could do was cry and smile.  He was perfect!  8 lbs 15 oz, 19.5 in. long, and a 15 cm. head without a tear (thanks to Stephanie!)  We took our first herbal bath together, nursed, relaxed, & Quinn got to meet his family who already adored him. 
Experiencing natural birth was so empowering and connecting.  Seeing Shaun be such an amazing support, being encouraged and loved so genuinely by our midwives, feeling that I am capable of tolerating such pain, and being completely coherent when I got to meet our son was invaluable.  Shaun and I are incredibly grateful to Stephanie Saunders, Galyn Lacewell, & Amber Reidel for such a beautiful birth experience at the New Braunfels Family Birth Center and our in awe of our little Quinn!

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