A Surprise Homebirth: Eaden’s Birth Story, Part 2

Part 1 of Eaden’s birth story is here, from last Monday.  When I sat down to write out his birth story, for his first birthday, I realized that I couldn’t write his without first writing Piper’s, because to me they feel like one story.  His story wouldn’t be what it is without what I went through with Piper.  It wouldn’t have the same meaning for me, and it probably would have been much different and a lot scarier…

Piper and I wouldn’t have survived a home birth, and although it was originally what we wanted we were advised against it from the beginning due to a few things in our family history I was being monitored for.  Spoiler alert for the end of this story: Eaden was born on our bedroom floor, in a very accidental, very un planned, very fast home birth.  Piper’s labor had taken over twenty-four hours, and I had pushed for over three hours, and I had no idea how long labor would take this time due to how heavily medicated and controlled hers was.  So I had nothing to base the timeline, or the level of pain off of.  All I remembered was that Piper’s birth was extremely miserable, and extremely long.

Labor started with Eaden at 8am on a Thursday, and went fast!  Pitocin contractions are nothing like normal contractions, and two hours later when my contractions were completely unbearable (as they had been during Piper’s entire labor), I assumed it was normal and I still had a long time to go, not realizing it was a sign that labor was just about over… My doula was there, and being the complete introvert that I am, we found out that I completely internalize all of my pain and she was questioning whether I was actually in labor or not…  Meanwhile I’m screaming on the inside.  We started to grab our bags to head to the hospital, and she rubbed my back to help me through a contraction and suddenly realized I was starting to push.  I replied calmly that yes I was pushing, but just a little so it was ok…  I mean, I had pushed for over three hours with Piper so obviously we still had time, right?!  Yes time, as in less than five minutes.  We realized we weren’t going to make it out the door…  I remember thinking I don’t want to stain the rug on our bedroom floor, it was a birthday present, and shoving it out of the way.  We called 911 to let them know what was happening, Guillaume grabbed towels and after less than five pushes I heard Sara yell, “It’s a boy!” and then, “and he’s peeing all over me!” and I collapsed forward onto the floor in exhaustion and relief.

Piper walked into the room immediately, getting a chance to give her baby brother kisses and hugs before medics had shown up and before the cord had been cut. The ambulance arrived about ten minutes later to take over and make sure we were ok.  They cut the cord, put me on oxygen and got ready to transfer us.  (Fun fact: in New Jersey, it’s illegal to plan for unattended home birth like we had- and yes, ours was truly very unplanned!! So along with the paramedics, a senior officer had to show up to check the situation and get a handle on what may have truly happened!  I’m pretty sure all it took was one glance into the bedroom to see a rug shoved out of the way and me laying on our fancy pillow shams and the towels that had been wedding presents to see that we weren’t quite prepared for this to happen…)

We live in an upstairs apartment of our house, so I was carried down our stairs onto a chair stretcher, then switched to a normal stretcher outside on our sidewalk and then slid into an ambulance for a ten minutes, lights flashing ride to the local hospital where we were both checked out, and then taken to a recovery room to sit around for almost two days waiting to be released to go home.

I started sobbing when he was handed back to me in the hospital after they cleaned us up and checked us out.  I felt something, I knew who this was and I could feel all the feelings.  And on top of all that, I could see him clearly.

It was the most redemptive experience I could have asked for, and to this day I’m extremely grateful.  People still ask me if I was scared, and tell me they would have been terrified, but the funny thing is is that it felt so right, that there was nothing to do but feel calm and at peace during the entire experience.

The best part of all of it for me was that Piper was right there to meet him.  The first time around I may have missed out on some of this moment with her, but the second time it was all three of us together and it was perfect.

My heart cries for women who don’t get the birth they wanted, who feel like something was taken from them and they missed out on something.  There’s a part of me that is still nervous about going into labor again with baby 3, but we’re trying a new hospital this time, and a new midwife practice, and ultimately I have to remind myself that God is in control and He knows what he’s doing.

xoxo, Katherine

Bignon Family Newborn Session by Richmond Photographics Bignon Family Newborn Session by Richmond Photographics

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One Response to “A Surprise Homebirth: Eaden’s Birth Story, Part 2”

  1. Katie says:

    I got the chills reading your birth stories Katherine! You’re so brave mama!!!! I know the arrival of your littlest one will be amazing!!!!

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