- Christi Stoltzfus
The Arrival of William Conrad
On October 29, my husband and I drove to our 38 week appointment for our first baby. After checking in at the desk and telling them that I thought I was in labor but decided to come to the appointment anyway, we were taken back to the exam room. After the routine questions and answers in between contractions and an internal exam, the midwife seemed surprised and said, "You seem to be fully dilated. Do you feel the urge to push? You really shouldn't be talking to me right now." I had experienced some painless Braxon Hicks contractions during the third trimester but I had had stronger and somewhat uncomfortable contractions the last few days. For about 2 days, they were approximately every 10 minutes apart and had gradually increased in intensity. That afternoon, as I walked around our neighborhood with my sister, they continued to increase in intensity and were about every 4-5 minutes lasting 1 minute for several hours. Although that was the criteria to call the midwife, I was hesitant considering the last few days of seemingly no progression. Once we found out how far along I was at the office, we were anxious to get home because we had planned for a home water birth. The office contacted the on call midwife, who arrived shortly, and confirmed that I was completely dilated. They determined that it would be safest to have her drive me home. We followed my husband home and arrived about 25 minutes later. We had been keeping our doula up to date throughout the week and she met us at our house. Once we got in and settled, my husband began to fill the birthing pool. The midwife periodically checked our baby's heartbeat as more uncomfortable contractions continued. Still not feeling an urge to push, the midwife reassured me to, "Listen to my body." When the pool was full, I got in and decided to start pushing. My husband physically supported me as I pushed guided by our doula using a rebozo. Our baby boy was born about an hour later. We are so grateful for the care we received from the midwife, nurse, and doula. I have a hard time putting into words our birth experience...life certainly changed so quickly and so wonderfully all at once.