This time around, I decided to use a midwife instead of an OBGYN. I watched the Business of Being Born and started reading about midwifery. This book not only convinced me to use a midwife this time around, but tugged on my heart in a way that led me to believe midwifery as a future vocation.
So because we were using midwives, we also decided to look into more natural ways of birthing our baby. I loved how God transformed women physically and emotionally during pregnancy to prepare them for the birth of their child. I also felt like God designed our bodies to give birth and there are not a lot of interventions needed (most of the time).
We decided to try #3 without any interventions, but still birthing in the hospital. So we were planning on no pain meds, no IV, letting the chord pulse, immediately nursing and skin to skin, etc. So to prepare, we took a Brio Birth class where we were taught some pain management techniques and birthing positions. We prepared this together and were looking forward to the labor.
You see, Matt and I have both taken the 5 Love Language survey and both of us share our top love language which is quality time. We make date nights a top priority in our house and budget them in like we would our grocery, gas or doctor bills. Spending time together without our kids is super valuable and has been very life-giving to our relationship. So, when we were discussing the labor for our third, we were looking forward to a date. A really painful date.
Labor took for.ev.er. to start. I passed my due date and was just… waiting. I can’t tell when labor begins based on my contractions’ regularity because I have a very ‘irritable uterus’ that contracts a ton, all the time. But I can tell labor by the level of pain in my contractions. So on November 10th, 2011 (the day before 11-11-11), the contractions started to get a little painful-but they were like hours apart… Eventually they just got to the point where I could not talk through them. Sometimes contractions would be 3 minutes apart, and the next one would be 25 minutes later. We decided to go in.
I got checked in, Matt and I joking around in the waiting room. Needless to say, they took their time checking me. But when they did, I was already dilated to a 7. They took us to the labor and delivery wing and left us alone. It. Was. Glorious.
You see, Matt was my coach. He held me, he massaged my back, he made me a “push mix” with all my favorite songs, he dimmed the lights, he rubbed my back, he kissed my sweaty forehead and spoke life-giving words to me. We shared a slice of paradise together that afternoon. Labor only lasted an hour and a half or so, but I have never felt closer to my husband. I usually have trouble being venerable, admitting my need for my husband. But during that labor, I needed him. Every bit of him, right beside me. He got up once to change a song on the CD player and I experienced a contraction without him and it was AWFUL! I could not have done a natural birth without him. It was our best date ever.
Three pushes and Joseph Christopher Halbach came into our world, weighing 8 lbs, 2 oz.