On Friday May 21st, 2010 at 7:38 am we finally got to meet Baby C – Owen Allan Campbell – after 39 long weeks of waiting :-) I truly could not imagine a more perfect birth story for Owen. It was nothing short of amazing – everything we had hoped and planned and wished and prepared for…and then some!
It started the weekend of May 15-16th. I had two nights of 3-4 hours of stronger-than-Braxton-Hicks contractions that were anywhere from 3-5 minutes apart. I started to get really nervous, since Dale hadn’t yet arrived in Comox. For any who missed it, our plan was to deliver at Gill and Brandon’s house in Comox with the same midwife who delivered Nate. The last weekend of April, Dale, Nate Turner and I packed up the truck and drove from Cold Lake to Comox and then Dale flew back to Cold Lake to work for a few more weeks. Anyway – so on Monday morning I called our midwife and asked her to check me to see where I was at and whether we should think about having Dale fly out earlier than his planned arrival date of Friday. Turns out I was 4cm and getting thin, so after some frantic phone calls and switching a West Jet flight, Dale hopped on a plane on Tuesday and the real waiting began.
After he got here I didn’t have any more strings of contractions and we were almost starting to second guess our decision to bump the flight up (which cost $200! LOL). Thursday, the 20th, I started having regular Braxton Hicks in the late afternoon and they kept up all evening. I was kind of thinking that things might happen soon but didn’t say too much. Gill was just anxious that Baby not be born on Saturday since she was going to be away all day shooting a wedding.
When we went to bed Thursday I couldn’t sleep and just tried to relax. Around 3 am Friday morning the contractions changed and were definitely stronger. I timed them in bed for an hour and they were 3-5 minutes apart lasting 1-2 minutes. At 4 I figured things were starting for real so I got up to have a snack and move around a bit. At 5 Gill woke up and I gave her a heads up, so she went back to try to sleep for while longer. By 5:30 I was needing to consciously relax during the contractions so I woke Dale up and just before 6 we called the midwife and woke Gill and the two of them started to get the bedroom and birth pool set up. This was about the time that I turned on my hypnobirthing “music” but rather than listening to the Rainbow Relaxation track (which I don’t particularly like and didn’t find helpful during Nate’s birth) I chose to listen to my Birthing Affirmations, as I had been doing almost every night since late in the first trimester.
The midwife, Joanne (incidentally not the same midwife who delivered Nate – but wonderful nonetheless!), arrived at 6:15 and I don’t think she really believed that I was in active labour since I was still laughing and talking and moving fairly easily, but when she checked me I was 6cm. I thought about trying to move around some more, but was really comfortable on the bed, listening to my Birthing Affirmations and playing solitaire between contractions on my iPhone. Thank goodness for iPhones :-)
Right around 7 am, Nate woke up and my contractions quickly started to get closer together. I was ready to get into the birth pool but needed to use the bathroom first. I had a little show and started to feel more downward pressure – getting into the tub was a wonderful change. I had about two contractions and then felt a lot more pressure, so Joanne called the second midwife and told her to head over. On the next contraction my water broke, which made us all laugh because it looked like a little bomb exploding in the water! LOL Suddenly I was getting tons of pressure and with the next contraction our Baby was crowning. Joanne had to rush around a bit to get a few last things set up and Gill almost missed the whole thing because she had taken Nate downstairs to eat breakfast. This was the only point in labour when I got a bit freaked out, because I remembered the awkwardness and pain from pushing out Nate, but I concentrated on my Birthing Affirmations and the encouragement from the Dale and Gill and Joanne and gently pushed out his head on the next contraction. Waiting to push out the body was the toughest part, but I breathed through it and in two pushes he had arrived :-) He arrived at 7:38 am and was a calm relaxed hypnobaby.
Nate came up to meet his baby brother minutes after he was born and was in love from the get go. For the most part he is very gentle with Owen and helpful too. He has been acting out with Mommy and Daddy though – so the changes are obviously getting to him.
Today Owen is a week old and still a very calm, easy-going baby. He is sleeping 3 hour stretches at night and goes back to sleep easily after nursing. We have figured out most of his cues and already it seems like he has been part of “us” forever.
Because of Owen’s easy birth, my recovery has also been remarkably easy. I am feeling great; tired, but great! Nursing hasn’t been nearly as difficult as it was for Nate and I either. I’ve still had rather sore nipples, but I think that is to be expected. I’m definitely less stressed about it all, which I’m sure is helping to make it easier too!
I can’t wait to share more about Owen as he grows :-)