Elza’s birth

Author: Kitija

My first experience giving birth to my son has not left me positive memories therefore I gave a special thought on planning where, how and what will happen when I meet Elza. On first birth I had no intention of having birth outside the hospital. I thought that hospital is a standard and everybody there knows better, though after my experience in hospital setting I have changed my views entirely and now I knew I want it to be different – better. I am not saying that hospital is bad – it’s just not for me. I considered home birth but it turned out impossible to happen. I had heard many good references on birth home “Harmonija”. Also I knew I wish to have waterbirth this time. Another pro – our home is very close, so we could arrive without any stress. On 36th week we went to “Harmonija”. I felt there very good. Meeting Aija made me confident, that I can trust myself to this woman. We concluded the agreement and I was in total peace, knowing that this time there will be different scenario. My due date was 19.06. (Thursday). I like planning, so I Had my perfect Birth plan. I wanted the birth to be on 21.06. (Saturday), because then all the conditions would be optimal. I dreamed of baking honey cake on the day before birth to take it with me. Why so? I just thought it necessary. Why not earlier? We had no option of anyone looking after Klāvs. Also our house was being renovated and on 21st we would have at least one room finished to move in. Although on the beginning of June I had a feeling, that birth might start earlier. Every night I gasped “Good, another day gone, we are closer to 21st.” I had very strong Braxton-Hicks for three days that made me think the birth will start soon, but there was no pain. Then they ceased. On the 11th I had to go to repeated sonography because on 36th week it was determined that baby has “extremally” big head and we had to make sure it has not become even bigger, preventing me to give birth. I thought it to be totally unnecessary, because I knew everything would be just fine and I will be able to give birth even with the “big” head. The USG results turned out to be fine, and I finally found out we were expecting a girl. On 12th June I had a strange feeling since very morning. My nesting instincts urged me to finish all my chores and preparing baby clothes. I had contractions but no pain, while moving around. Little pain started in the afternoon, suggesting that it might be the day. On 7 PM contractions were 10 minutes apart, so I called my mother asking to arrange her schedule to take care of Klāvs. I contacted Aija, informed her on what’s happening and she said we should head to “Harmonija”. On our way we bought honey cake since I will not be able to bake it myself. When we stepped out the car, there was drizzling rain and fantastic rainbow in the sky from the setting sun. This moment has been strongly impressed in my memory – I thought it was a special message from God, confirming – ALL will be well. We had that incredible sense of peace. When we arrived in “Harmonija”, Aija examined me and found out the dilation was 4 cm. Soon after settling in our room the contractions were 3-4 minutes apart. I was not surprised since our first son was born quickly and I expected similar scenario. But this time I WAS prepared. I knew I have to relax during contractions, and I must let go. I would never thought I would say so, but going through contractions was kind of pleasure. I am not sure if this is appropriate word, but it was. Nevertheless the pain, I had feeling we work together with our baby to meet sooner, and it created some kind of euphoria (It was not so in my first birth since I was very tense). Me and my husband talked, joked and laughed a lot. After midnight Aija checked on us and said I could go into bath, because she had the feeling it might be fast. Also it would soften the tissues, preventing tearing. I was not into bathing yet, so we worked on land for an hour or so. We had tea with cookies, and soon I thought that I probably should get into tub, just for sake of my tissues. When I got in it was a bliss. It was so warm, good and pleasurable, it made me feel so light. I spent an hour in the tub, the contractions were still 3-4 minutes apart, but lasted for 1,5 minutes. I felt them to become stronger and sensed in my body how baby’s head moves forward. We joked with my husband that this birth is like a fairy tale – 304 minutes relaxing in warm tub, breathe through contraction and relax again. I noticed my husband being little bored and watched how his eyes fall closed. It was so sweet. It’s a pitty, I could not offer him some “action”. But then after 2 AM there came contraction so strong, that during it I started to lose my “feeling of presence” and started to shiver. I told my husband to call Aija, for the finish is near. Turned out Aija had the feeling she should come herself. She checked me and found out there was a little rim of cervix left – still some contractions needed to go past that. And then started the nights great event – pushing. I was not ready for it to happen so fast and probably the old birth trauma was triggered. I was so shocked by strong pain and that feeling of “pooping”, that I started to scream. With Aijas help I came to my senses and follower her instructions on breathing, which of course made the process easier. With one contraction baby moved very close to the exit, I had a little rest and then next contraction came, making me scream again that I cannot bear this. Then I got it together, and pushed with the sound “Feeee!” During that one contraction the ENTIRE head was out! I was in shock! I never thought it was possible. No torture and that’s it – in one push! I was relieved, because I knew, that the hardest part is over. Before next contraction Aija urged to make pushing gentler. I was not actually able to evaluate my pushing strength and gave it a full power. The baby popped out like a rocket. Aija said: “Good, that the cord was short, otherwise baby would bump into bath”. That made us laugh again. Baby is on my belly – she is very peaceful and quiet and looks very much like her brother. We wait until the cord ceases to pulse and my husband cuts it. I say – I am ready to give birth again right away, if this is how it happens. We cannot believe how easy and wonderful it was. Though the largest joy is ahead of me, when I found out I had no – I’ll repeat – NO tear. The baby showed no interest for breast yet, so husband took her, I pushed out the placenta and all three of us moved back to our room. Baby was weighed – 3110 g and measured – 50 cm. Then the first meal followed. I was surparised I had no need of medication for afterpains, because I remembered them from first birth. Now I was able to breath them through, and they were away on the second day. Our little daughter was very peaceful. The time we spent in “Harmonija” is unforgettable and the healing experience we had there cannot be put in words. Me and my husband decided, that we had had a real homey-moon trip. We enjoyed our stay there for another day extra, since we knew that at home we would have our “real” life started. Aija’s attitude was fantastic – very unobtrusive, just as needed. My eyes fill with tears when I remember this birth. This time they are tears of incredible joy and happiness. If all births were like this, I could give birth all the time. I am grateful to God, that He allowed us to experience such miracle, arranging all circumstances even better than I could plan and giving us our little Elza, who is very peaceful – we still cannot believe it.