Saturday's Story

Friday, June 5, 2009
I wanted to share the story of Lincoln's birth. I have shared this with a few people, but when I was pregnant, it REALLY helped me to hear and read other birth stories to encourage me that I was going to be able to do it! So, I hope that this story can provide strength to someone as well!

On Thursday, December 18th, Lucas and I went in to see our midwife, Bernadette, for my weekly checkup. Bernadette said if we wanted, she thought sweeping the membranes would be effective to kick start labor since things were already looking good (I was 80% effaced and 3 cm). We agreed because both our families were coming in the next 2 days and I really wanted things to get going by the time they got there. So, we decided I would come back at 8:30 the next morning to sweep the membranes. The morning of December 19th, we headed back to the birth center and the membranes were swept. We were sent us home with instructions to walk, bounce on the birth ball, keep active and check back in with Bernadette at noon. Lucas and I ran some errands and I started having some contractions about 5 minutes apart at 10:00. By the time we got home, they were 3 minutes apart. We walked around the house a bit, ran to Sonic for some lunch for Lucas (a slush for me!), came back home and contractions were 2 minutes apart by 12:30. We called Bernadette, who suggested I keep laboring at home as long as I felt comfortable. About 2:00, contractions became a minute apart and we decided to drive to the birth center.

When we got there, my midwife checked me and despite my strong contractions, I was only dilated 4 cm. She said that she wanted to watch me for a couple hours, but if I didn't make any more progress in that time, she would send me home to keep laboring there. So, for 2 hours I got in the birth tub and contractions kept getting harder and longer. I was determined not to have to go home! At the end of 2 hours, she checked and I was 6 cm. Yay, didn't have to leave (not without a baby, anyway!). At this point, my Bernadette and her apprentice, Jaymee, thought it would be good for me to walk around, to help the baby move down and help open the cervix. So, Lucas and I did laps around the birth center for about 45 minutes, then I decided I wanted to get back in the water--where I stayed for a really long time, it seemed! At this point, the contractions were back to back, and it was getting really hard. Bernadette checked again, and I was 8 cm. She offered to break my water because she thought it would help the cervix finish dilating so I could push. I don't remember her doing it, but apparently she did break the water--and then things got really intense! She told me she thought I should get out of the water because it seemed like it was really tiring me out being in there. I protested, because I didn't think I could get myself out of the tub, but eventually managed to do so and got onto the bed. The birth center has regular, queen sized beds in the rooms, so Lucas was able to lay with me and help me get through transition (at which point I announced that I was done and asked the midwife to just pull the baby out...this is how I knew I was in transition! I actually remembered something from our childbirth class!). I laid on my side and that seemed to help a bit. I don't remember how long that lasted, but I do remember the midwife checking and saying I was complete and could push anytime I felt ready. So, I pushed for 45 minutes--it took me awhile to get the hang of it!--and the head was born. Bernadette told me on the next contraction, push and the body would be born. I pushed, but nothing happened. Lucas was starting to cry, and looked scared, but at the time I thought he was just excited to meet the baby. The midwife said that I needed to listen to her and immediately roll over onto my hands and knees. I did as fast as I could, waited until she said to push, and Lincoln was born! I turned around to look at him and saw he was purple. My midwife and her apprentice were working really fast and then he took his first breath and cried a little. Later, Lucas told me when the head was born, it started turning more and more purple, so he thought something bad was going to happen, which is why he was crying. It turns out that Lincoln was stuck with shoulder dystocia and an occult cord prolaspe (meaning his shoulders were turned sideways and the cord lodged underneath one of the shoulders--which is why he was turning purple. The cord was compressed, so oxygen wasn't getting to him). After a minute or two, he began to get his pink/red color and was so alert! Our midwife was wonderful and knew just how to handle the situation. I held and fed Lincoln for about an hour, then Lucas cut the cord and they weighed and measured the baby. Lucas took over holding him for awhile because I had to get "put back together", as my midwife says. I had some 3rd-4th degree tearing from the shoulders being twisted how they were. We rested after that and went home around 2:15 am--5 hours after Lincoln was born. We were so blessed to have such a wonderful birth experience under the amazing care of Bernadette and Jaymee.

Lucas put together this video. I think it is the perfect thing to share with this story.

on Vimeo.

*I would love to make this a recurring post on Saturdays. If you would be interested in sharing your birth story, please e-mail me (ourlincolnlog at gmail com).*


  1. how cool that you delivered at a birth center! i constantly tell J that I am going to deliver my next baby AT HOME!

    What a neat story, too! Thanks so much for sharing!

    I've written out my birth story before and could tweak it some to be included on your blog if you want :0

  2. Thank you for sharing.

    I love reading birth stories. Yours is wonderful.

    I love the video. It made me cry. :)

    I have posted my birth story once upon a time. You could include it if you like. Just let me know.

  3. I was lucky enough to hear Kelly's birth story shortly after Lincoln's birth.

    I think the sharing of birth stories is so important. I don't think may people are aware how transforming the process of birth is for a mother.

    I was so thankful to have our son Hudson born at home, all 9 lbs of him!

    *Kelly, you are welcome to use our birth story.

  4. very nice birth story! I agree with Sam about how transforming birth is for women! I would certainly be honored to share my 2 birth stories on your site. I had an all natural hospital birth in 2002 and a home birth in 2007.

    (our first birth/hospital/11-2002 - finally blogged Nov 2008)

    (our home birth/10-2007)

    Let me know if you'd like to post one or both of them sometime... Jill


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