On Saturday, July 30 at about four or five in the evening I started to have cramps and thought this might be the beginning of baby’s arrival considering that he or she was overdue by 5 days at that point. We decided to go to bed early that night because we thought if baby was going to be coming the next day it would be good to get a lot of rest. However when we woke up Sunday morning I was still getting the same kind of cramping I was getting the night before. We decided it would be best just to go about our daily activities and get a few things done. So we headed off to the mall to get a few things and let Quentin play and just kind of had a day as a family.
That night as Al was getting Quentin ready for bed, I went to the washroom and noticed that I lost some of my mucous plug, so I decided that I should give my mom and my sister in law and doula Chaara a call to give them a head’s up that they might be getting a phone call in the middle of the night. Chaara didn’t answer the phone but I figured she would call me back based on call display. About an hour later when Chaara called me back I had just been to the washroom again and at that point had lost the rest of my mucous plug so Chaara suggested that Al and I get some rest as things might be progressing fairly soon.
Al and I headed to bed at around 11:30 pm but our stupid neighbours decided to play awful country music really loudly so neither one of us could sleep. Al decided that he would get up to play Grand Turismo on PlayStation, while I decided that I would just get up and lay on the couch next to him as he played. And at that point I think I realized that I was actually having proper contractions. So as Al played PlayStation I laid on the couch and closed my eyes and then would get up when I had a contraction. I wasn’t really timing the contractions because they didn’t seem like they were lasting that long or coming that frequently and they were actually all in my stomach compared to the back labour I had with Quentin’s birth so I wasn’t 100% sure if they were just early rumblings or something I should pay more attention to.
At about quarter to 2 in the morning Al decided he would try and get some sleep and I knew I wasn’t going to able to lay in bed since I was needing to get up every time I had a contraction, so I stayed in the living room laying on the couch and getting up when I had a contraction, again not timing them.
At 3 am after a contraction, I again laid down on the couch, but this time I must have fallen asleep because the next thing I knew I woke up to a brutal contraction at about 3:25 and was just confused like why was there such a gap? At this point however they were more painful and coming faster so I went and woke up Al asking for sympathy because the contractions were really hurting now and that maybe he should start timing my contractions because I felt like they were coming rather quickly. As Al timed them I threw up a couple of times and after timing them for about 15 minutes, he said they were about 45 seconds long and 1-2 minutes apart. We were both a little surprised that they were so close together.
Now 4 a.m., it was definitely time to phone my parents to get them to come out to watch Quentin, but when I called my mom she didn’t seem to believe me and told me to call my midwife and see what she thought. So we called my midwife Lindsay, and she of course agreed that my parents should come out, and that once they got there to call her back and she would meet us at the hospital, unless I felt pressure sooner, then I was to call her back. So we called my parents back and told them to get going and pick up Chaara.
As the next hour went by, and my contractions were coming hard and fast, I was wondering where my parents were. And by 5 a.m. I was cursing them for not being here yet. At 5:15 a.m., as another contraction hit, I felt pressure and was like oh no Al call Lindsay back tell her I feel pressure! As he called her I went to the washroom because I felt like I needed to use the washroom and the pressure became more intense. Lindsay said the second my parents got there to head to the hospital and she would meet us there. Then 5 minutes later my parents and Chaara finally showed up. Chaara supported me as I stood and went to the sink and as the next contraction came I felt the need to squat and push. Al had gone downstairs to put my hospital bag in the car and get it ready to go, and when he returned, Chaara was like ok I don’t think we are going to the hospital. So Al called Lindsay again to say that Chaara didn’t think that we were going to make it to the hospital and that she should come here instead. Given my previous special scar and my blood disorder, Lindsay told Al to call 911 to get an ambulance here just in case I needed to be transported to the hospital and she would get here as soon as possible. She also told Al to get me to lie down to which I was like no way there is no way I am laying down!
When the paramedics got there, they also insisted I lay down and again I said no way, so instead they helped me out of the washroom, placed a whole bunch of towels on the floor and I got on all fours in the hallway. As I laboured in the hallway, I kept thinking to myself between contractions, holy am I actually going to have a home birth? I always wanted one but didn’t think I could have one. As the paramedics were almost about to check me at about 5:45 a.m., my midwife Lindsay showed up, much to my relief and the relief of the paramedics! So as they stepped back, Lindsay said she was going to check me to see if we were going to be able to go to the hospital or if we were staying here and I thought to myself, we are staying here!! The second she checked me she said ok we are staying here – much to my relief!
With sweat pouring off me and on all fours, I gave into my body and pushed when I had a contraction and breathed through the pain. Lindsay asked if Quentin had hair when he was born and I said yes! Then she said I could reach down and touch the top of my baby’s head and I did. When I pushed again I really felt the baby’s head move and at that point all I could do was think out out out and pushed, only to be reminded to use little pushes. After 3 good pushes, Lindsay said the head was out and then the next thing I knew my baby was on the towels beneath me. I looked down to see this little birth covered being and got to discover that I had a girl!!! Towels were put around her and Chaara helped put her in my arms and I knelt there in my hallway with my baby girl in arms and just kept saying I did it, I can’t believe I did it, I really did it!
Start to finish I was in labour for about 7 hours, I had my vbac completely natural the way I wanted and even got to do it at home! The funny thing: Quentin slept through the whole thing and I was in the hallway right outside his room!