When Baby Zula was Born
It was Thursday April 24th. I was really in the mood to go out. I had a Yoshi’s gift card so I was thinking about going to a show there. I invited Lindsay but she already had plans. She was going to a twerking/vogueing contest in the Castro. Greg and I decided to go to that with her and Jessica and Becca. It was a lot of fun.
I felt gas pains on and off the whole time we were there. When we got home I realized the gas pains were actually contractions. They continued to happen every 5 minutes or so for a while so I called Lauren. They continued to happen and get more intense so I called Lauren again and then Sue. I also called my mom. When Sue answered the phone, she said “Good Morning!”
My mom came over around 2:30 am. I felt the contractions a lot in my lower back. I would have my mom or Greg put pressure on my lower back and rub it through each contraction. It would feel so good when each surge was over. I was also trying real hard to deep breathe during each one. I was thankful for all of the yoga I did during my pregnancy. It definitely helped with my breathing. I also did some yoga poses like cat/cow, flowy cat and hip circles.
I called the midwives again around 4:30 and they came over around 5:30. Once they got there, my contractions started to get less intense and farther apart. Lauren massaged me and then I slept for a while waking up with each contraction. Sue and Lauren left around 8:45. I steadily had contractions all day but they varied with intensity and time in between. I puked 5 times. At one point I was hanging out with my mom on the floor listening to reggae. Then Greg joined me on the floor and my mom took a break. We got a package from Beth that was two children's books. Greg and I opened the package and I read the two books to our baby. Just as I finished the second book, I got a contraction.
At about 5pm, my contractions got really intense. We called the midwives and they came over around 6pm. I was very happy to see them. I told them I wanted to switch positions. They had me get in the shower and sit on an exercise ball. It felt really good. Lauren had me make deep noises through each contraction. After the shower, I changed positions several more times. At one point, I got frustrated during a contraction. Sue said “Don’t lose your shit now.” At another point I was on the bed. Lauren was on one side massaging me and Sue was on the other reading the birth affirmations to me. At another point, Lauren and I were walking to the bathroom. Blood flowed out of me. It was my bloody show. When we went to the bathroom, my mucus plug passed through. Shortly after that, they checked my cervix. I was 8 cm dilated. They said I could get in the tub. The tub felt really good. I totally got in my zone and I started alternating between regular contractions and pushing ones. The pushing ones felt like an uncontrollable urge to take a shit.
I said I didn’t want to have the baby in the tub so I got out, toweled off and went to the bed. I sat down against Greg and pushed in that position for a while. A little while later, Sue gave me choices of different positions to switch into into. I said, “Just tell me what to do.” When Nile arrived, I pushed and my water burst open. I switched to hands and knees after a while. Then I switched to the birth stool on the floor. I was able to feel the baby’s head in my vagina. It was really cool and made me smile really big. After a while of pushing on the stool, I went back to the bed. I was pushing so hard and it felt like it was never going to end. I said, “I’m doing everything I can do. I don’t know what else to do. I’m doing the best I can.” Since it had been a while and I wasn’t making a lot of progress, Sue and Lauren put their hands in and helped guide my pushing. I finally started to make progress. We were going to switch positions again but I ended up pushing the head out. They had me feel the head. It was so cool and got me very excited. Nile was announcing the time that had lapsed. WIth my next surge, I pushed and the whole body out.
Lauren caught the baby and handed her to me. She was so cute. She looked like a girl to me but I didn’t know for sure yet. I was so happy and relieved. It was the best feeling ever. I said stuff like “I am so happy”, “I love my baby”, “I’ve always wanted to do this and I did it.” The placenta came out shortly after with a very easy little push. After a little while, Nile was like, “Do you want to know if its a girl or boy?” Greg and I were like, “Yes!” She checked and told us it was a girl. I walked to the bathroom with Lauren and we sang Happy Birthday the whole way there.
Zula was with Greg getting skin to skin time and trying to breastfeed on him. When I came back, she latched on to me right away. I took a shower a little while later. It felt really good. Greg and Lauren cut the cord. Sue and Lauren did a test on Zula. Everything was perfect except for her misshapen head. They left around 5:30am. My mom slept on the couch and Greg, Zula, and I slept for a few hours.
The labor was about 26 hours which included almost 4 hours of pushing. I wasn’t expecting such a long labor and so long of pushing. Even though it was long and hard, it was also beautiful and wonderful. I felt safe and in good hands the whole time. I was so happy to be able to be at home the whole time. I loved having the support of my mom and Greg and my awesome midwives. When it was all over, it was the most amazing feeling.
I was so happy to finally meet my beautiful baby girl.