I had my heart set on a home birth right from the start of this pregnancy. I had a quick labour in a midwife led unit with my first daughter so it made sense to me to stay at home.
Everything started in the early hours of the 2nd June. Just after midnight I woke up to period-like cramps just like last time. They were coming ever 20-30 minutes throughout the night and I tried to get some rest between them. At this point they weren’t very painful and I just breathed through them.
It wasn’t til the morning that I told my husband that I thought it was going to happen that day. It was already longer than the 6 hour labour with Eleanor so I started to worry I was in for the long haul. Or that it would be days of on and off contractions until baby arrived (luckily it wasn’t!).
I felt a lot of the pain in my back and the contractions were becoming really irregular, anything between 3-15 minutes apart. Much of the morning was spent in a deep bath which I kept topped up with hot water. I alternated between a bath and bouncing on my ball watching Friends (which is what I did when in labour with Eleanor too).
Calling labour line
By lunchtime I called for a midwife to come out. She felt my bump and said baby was moving around into a better position from her back being on my right to on my left, which is why I was getting so much back pain. She recommended a walk and lots of leaning forward to get her moving.
We headed out and walking really helped the pain. I could barely feel the contractions while walking which was great. After a windy walk around the field I got back into the bath to relax. While I did this my husband got the birth pool ready and all the towels around. I hired a Birth Pool in a Box mini from Gentle Births Birthing Pool Hire, who were absolutely fab! To block out day light, we covered our windows were covered in foil, and we had led candles, music playing and my diffuser running. It was so relaxing.
Getting the pool ready
At 4:30 the midwife came back and examined me. I wasn’t expecting much but she said she thought I was 6.5cm but couldn’t tell as my waters were bulging. But it meant it was time to fill up the pool! I was desperate to get in. I remember being in the pool with Eleanor and it felt so good.
The second midwife turned up with some gas and air so I relaxed in the pool with that and completely zoned out. I focused on the music and my breathing. I’d been listening to my birthing playlist for weeks (and I still do now) so it really helped me to focus on my breath.
I’m not sure where the next hour went. But at 18:06 my waters broke in the pool and I stopped using the gas and air so that I could feel everything. It was absolutely amazing to feel her head come out and then her turn around before shooting out and swimming up to Daddy. He caught her and put her on my chest at 18:15. It was magical. I can’t quite believe I did it. That was my dream birth.
I seem to have really good positive births and then we end up in hospital anyway. I’ll write all about that soon.