Labor is a process where pain and happiness blends all together. You may hear stories but it may be different. I find mine was filled with experiences that make it forever memorable.
Contractions starting: Here we go
I started contractions one night at 38 weeks, right after going to bed. It was something that I have never experienced before but definitely unmistakable. It woke me up. It went away. I waited. It returned. I couldn’t believe it was time. This was the day my baby will be born.
You don’t know when it will happen or if it will even happen. I stood up while I was getting my contractions and I heard a loud pop sound and felt a gush of water come down. It wasn’t a twinkle; it was a lot! I looked down and there was a big stain on the floor.
This was definitely it.
I find it’s fascinating how involuntary the birth process is. Your body completely takes over to deliver your baby. My husband’s reaction was pretty memorable too. He was shocked with excitement and reacted rushing to get to the hospital.
Touching my baby’s head in the birth canal
I was exhausted from 16+ hours of labor.
My nurse said: “Jenny, I can see the baby’s head in the birth canal. Do you want to feel it?”.
I paused to think about what I was about to do and then I said: “Of course”.
I did as she said and at that moment I felt my baby for the first time; his head and hair. He was at a reachable distance, tangible. For the first time I had direct contact with my baby.
Seeing my baby crowning
My little one spent a lot of time crowning.
“Jenny, do you want to see the baby’s head crowning through a mirror”–the doctor said.
“Yes, I would love to.”
This was a moment that I had included in my birth plan but did not even thought of it while I was in active labor. I know my doctor probably suggested it to give me strength and focus to push. I am so glad I got to see my labor process from another perspective. Seeing the baby while he is coming out of your body is something utterly impressive.
I had been pushing for a long time and still the baby was just crowning and did not move any further.
I heard the doctor say: “Ok, I want to see forehead and eyebrows”.
At some point I really felt like giving up because nothing else was happening and I was already trying so hard. I looked around me and saw everybody that was there. I think we were all worried.
I thought “Lord, help me”.
As I got ready to push the doctor said to me: “All your might, all your might”.
I gave it my all and unexpectedly—at least for me—everybody in the room saw: forehead, eyebrows, eyes, nose, mouth, neck, shoulders, belly and legs. My baby’s body, head to toes, had moved completely out of my body in just one push and in about 3 seconds. I felt the movement of his body coming out of me all at once, very fast and sudden. It was another impressive moment.
Husband and staff support
There is not another moment where I’ve felt greater support from my husband.
We were in this together.
Every minute. Every hour. Every contraction.
He kept me distracted in the early hours in between contractions, made me laugh (while I had a sense of humor), motivated me, slow danced with me and held my hand when I was exhausted.
All of him was there for me, for us.
The nursing team was very caring and available to me. They always had a neutral tone, low voice and explained everything as I progressed. They reinforced me saying: “you are very strong”. That reminds you that you can do it. I had a great right-after-delivery memory of them. The doctor and the nurse approached me just to chat a little while I was there holding my baby. It made me feel like everything was cool and back to normal.
Holding him for the first time
My baby was brought to my chest right after he was born. This was the most emotional moment of my life. It’s your pain-worthy moment filled with awe, a cry of shock and a rush of enjoyment.
This was a day like no other.