7 months? How is it possible for my little Silas to be almost 7 months old? It’s time to get his birth story in writing before the details fade in my mind. Silas was a surprise, we were shocked actually. We had four kids how could we be shocked? We were though. When we found out I was scared, worried, and overwhelmed. How on earth would I be enough for another baby? I have many friends with more kids than me and they somehow manage, but me? I just wasn’t going to be able to. Let’s not even mention the the labor part! I have had some beautiful vbac’s but not one was simple or progressed as expected. I labor a very long time with each and I was scared. I believe that becoming a mom is meant to be used for growth in our lives. Each pregnancy, labor, and baby is used to be to mold us more into who we are meant to be.
As my heart was churning with so many fears early in the pregnancy the word that was constant in my heart was surrender. I am not in control. Yikes. Not an easy thing for me to hear. Many of my conversations with my midwife centered around my fear that I would need to labor a long time again. She reminded me over and over again that this baby was not his siblings, this pregnancy not like any other, and his labor and birth would be a journey all it’s own. Surrender to it and God’s plan for this birth. I heard, I believed, and I was convinced that I had that under control.
From the moment I found out I was pregnant I knew Tiffanie would be my midwife again. She has walked through my last 3 pregnancies with me and she knows me. She knows my likes and dislikes in labor. She knows the areas that I struggle in and is sensitive to those. She was a huge part of my first VBAC and there was never a question that she would be the one to help us guide this baby here. My sweet friend and Doula from Noah’s labor has since left Las Vegas so I was searching for another. Kristy Wilson was highly recommended to me and was soon decided on as our Doula.
The birth team was in place and I had an uneventful, healthy pregnancy. As the third trimester came to an end I was worn down, I shed many a tear as I managed prodromal labor AGAIN! After Noah I knew that this was just what my body does. As I managed weeks of contractions all night while continuing to do my stretches to ensure Silas was in the optimal position I believed I had surrendered to God’s plan for this birth, but as I realized a quick labor was again not to be for me I became discouraged. Silas’ guess date came and went, but that was ok because I was surrendering! Then more than a week passed I was tired, in pain, and getting no sleep. This was my fifth baby; couldn’t he at least come closer to his guess date and give this momma a break?
Easter Sunday we, actually Joseph, decided that a good run would be just the thing to take my mind off the reality of still being pregnant and maybe it would get things moving. We jogged a 5k and came home to get through the bedtime routine. Contractions began like they had been for weeks and I assumed they would stop by morning. I woke up at 2:45 when my water broke. Contractions picked up right away and Joseph gave our Doula a heads up and let her know we would text when we were ready for her to join us. I don’t know what time she came over, I kept busy cleaning in between contractions. At some point I was ready to get in the tub and I wanted our Doula there. In my mind I was not really in labor and come morning contractions would stop. As the sun came up Tiffanie arrived and my contractions came stronger and closer together. I was in the tub and Tiffanie turned my face up to her and quietly reassured me that I was doing wonderful, she was proud of me, and that we were on our way to meeting Silas. Our birth photographer was called and we prepared for the birth of our baby. The hours passed and I finally asked to be checked for progress. I don’t remember now what I was but progress was good and I felt encouraged and ready to carry on. I bounced between the shower, tub, squatting, and so on. Several more hours passed and I found out that Silas was rotated the same way Noah was and only one side of my cervix was effacing as it did with Noah. We called my favorite chiropractor and she came to my house to give me an adjustment.
Labor is mostly mental, or so I have been told by many people and this is where that became true for me. I began to doubt my ability to continue I was convinced that I would not progress and I was in for another 30 plus hours for labor as I had endured in previous births. Everyone encouraged me that this was different and to keep going. My chiropractor came and adjusted me, I did all kinds of lunges and side lying in the bed and everything else that might help him turn but he didn’t rotate. My contractions were consistent and strong and I started asking to go to the hospital, then I started demanding and telling everyone I was going whether they came or not. I alternated between crying and begging Joseph to please help me and then getting angry and insisting I was getting an epidural while my birth team told me that I was getting close and I would deliver in the car if we went to the hospital. I just didn’t believe that the end was anywhere in sight. This labor so closely resembled my last two and I just couldn’t see past the moment and the idea that I would be here the next day still waiting for my baby to be born.
So we packed up and headed off into rush hour traffic for a drive across town. We made a stop for gas and Tiffanie tried to encourage me to take a water bottle and have a drink. I was not interested! Around this time contractions increased and they were coming on top of each other, I wasn’t getting much of a break at all. Here I was in the most difficult stage of labor in the back of a car stuck in traffic. I remember looking up and seeing the exit for Las Vegas Boulevard and realizing that I could not sit still long enough to get an epidural. I was not going to get the pain relief I was sure I needed. Surrender. I was finally there. I was finally ready to let go of the fear of what labor might bring and focus on what THIS labor held for me. We were about four exits from the hospital at this point. We pulled up in front of the hospital entrance and Tiffanie told Joseph and I to get out and wait for her to park but as I turned around to climb of the seat I said nope! He is coming now. A couple of pushes and a midwife doing some impressive baby catching moves to catch the little dude and he was here. Born in the back of the midwife’s car! No homebirth but no hospital birth either!
Tears of joy on Joseph’s part, complete relief on mine and Tiffanie said, “Do you still want to go inside the hospital?” NO! We parked in the parking lot as we waited for the carseat to be delivered and Tiffanie proved her capable midwifery skills handling a minor complication and getting us all cleaned up in the back of a car. I will forever cherish our first night together just watching him sleep. Joseph was exhausted but I couldn’t sleep I was on such a high. His little noises and his smell were intoxicating. I was instantly in love with him and so thankful for those hours uninterrupted to just breathe him in. Now the recovery and adjusting to five kids has included quite a bit of surrender on my part as well. I am thankful for friends, for family, my husband and for a caring birth team. I am also incredibly thankful for this baby that I didn’t know I wanted.