What is Unassisted?
Before I get started on my story let me explain what an unassisted birth means for those who aren’t aware. Unassisted means no medical professional was present at the time of delivery. This was something Julio and I had spoken on but never actually thought would happen with this pregnancy.
I spent most days once I turned 37 weeks wondering if Brooklyn would pick that day to join our family. All those nights passed, and morning would come, and I was still not holding my baby.
A dream turned reality
That was until December 11th came and I was sitting on the bathroom floor trying to process the fact that I was holding my daughter and Julio was the one who delivered her.
On December 10th we were hanging out at home when that afternoon I started to have some contractions here and there. I once again thought well here are some more Braxton Hicks just to mess with me. As the evening came they seemed to slow down and I just never cared to time them. During that afternoon I moved things around, cleaning and organizing essentially, I was nesting.
As the night came we had a family movie night and I told Julio I was going to bed just in case she picked that night I would need the energy and as most pregnant women I woke up to pee and I remember saying I guess tonight isn’t the night and I went back to bed.
It was 2:30am on the dot on December 11th when I woke up to an awful contraction and thought for sure that was something I hadn’t experienced before. I laid in bed to see if they would continue and 10 minutes later another one came, and it was just as painful. During this time I never thought I would go unassisted. I got out of bed and went to the bathroom to empty my bladder and move around to try and get them to continue or stop. I found Julio’s headphones and plugged them in and 10 minutes after my last contraction another one came.
I decided to go back to bed and just relax but the contractions kept coming and I couldn’t stay still. I went to the bathroom again and needed to get in the shower to help my back it was hurting, and I needed relief. From my last contraction before I got in the shower up until the moment I got out a little over 11 minutes had passed and I had experienced another three contractions. I dried off and went to the room to wake up Julio I needed to get in the pool to have more of a constant relief. Julio asked for five more minutes and I told him that was fine, it still didn’t feel like it was real. I laid down next to him looking for comfort.
It’s baby time
I was stuck in bed and while there I had experienced two contractions that seemed to be one on top of the other that was the moment I knew it was real and this would be unassisted. I started to hit Julio from the pain of the contraction I needed for him to get up and fill the pool. While Julio got up and came around the bed my second contraction was too strong, and I couldn’t move.
I explained how he needed to setup the pool and sent him downstairs to get started. When my contractions ended I got up grabbing the chux pad from under me when my water broke. I could feel it was going to happen when I was laying down and the movement to get up was all it took. I walked to the bathroom and when Julio came back to check on me I was holding onto the sink having another contraction. I knew at that point I needed to call my midwife Christa so I did.
If you didn’t know, this is something I learned while doing some assistant work with another midwife, when you call your midwife to tell them you are in labor they listen to you talk and want to see how you are doing during the call when a contraction hit.
Christa did just that and said she was on her way. Once I hung up I told Julio I had made the call to Christa and that she was on the way .I asked him turn on the shower while the pool got filled, I still needed relief.
Hire a doula to think for you
At this point I had Julio working on the pool and the shower but I couldn’t move I was still bending over the sink in the bathroom. In what seemed like the same moment I told him to turn off the shower because I needed the water to be warm in the pool. I then asked Julio to call Amy our birth photographer and tell her she needed to come and that I knew she wanted the midwife to check me first but there wasn’t enough time the baby was coming now. He called, and she rushed over as well.
My mind was somehow still wanting a million things at once and I just needed to focus on one when suddenly, I yelled for Julio to come fast. I needed to get to the floor, I needed to push.
Now you may be wondering where all my kids were during all of this and the answer is simple, they were in the room sleeping, having no idea what was about to happen.
Here she comes
Julio came into the bathroom and asked me what to do so I had him help lower me to the floor. I knew I needed to be in a better position to birth Brooklyn. I was able to put a towel on the toilet to lay my head down. I asked him to get ready because her head was coming out. He tried to sit in front to help grab her but with the toilet in the way with the way I was bending over it that wasn’t going to work. I asked him to get behind me. I had my hand touching the top of Brooklyn’s head, I let go of anything I had on my mind and just let my body and knowledge takeover. Her head was out, and I told Julio to get ready he would need to grab her body once it started to come out. Another contraction hit, and I pushed it was her shoulders, Julio asked me to push again and with the next contraction and two pushes she was out! Julio was holding our daughter.
Daddy caught the baby
I turned my body around and sat on the bathroom floor while Julio asked me what to do next. Brooklyn wasn’t crying, and he was worried. I told him to lean her forward a bit with her head down and to give her a minute, all she needed was a minute too. Once I was sitting Julio handed Brooklyn over and we started to cry, we did it! Not only had we just given birth to our precious baby girl but we were on our own. Julio checked the time and it was 4:36AM. Brooklyn let out her first cry and Julio got us towels to stay warm.
The phone rang, and it was Christa calling to say she was on her way and we let her know Brooklyn had been born and I would be waiting on the bathroom floor for her to arrive. Six minutes had passed from my call for her to head over to the next call of her being born. I could not believe it. Christa and I talked about the cord and bleeding just to make sure everything was okay which we were.
Our birth crew arrives
Amy arrived first, and Julio went down to let her in, she came up and checked on us and took some pictures of us just waiting. Julio grabbed some pillows and him and Amy put them behind me to give me something to lean back on. The birth assistant arrived next so Amy stayed with me and Julio went down again to help her find parking and get into the building. Amy snapped some more pictures and I sat there still trying to process what had just taken place.
Christa stayed on the phone until her assistant was in the room and she could start to check on me and Brooklyn. Once we hung up and I knew she would just be another few minutes I called my mom it was about 5:40am by now and let her know the baby was here. She didn’t understand that Brooklyn had already arrived she thought I was in labor and asked if the midwife was also on her way. I repeated myself telling her no mom answer FaceTime the baby is here. My mom was on her way up too.
Christa arrived a few minutes later and checked me. I delivered the placenta while still sitting in the same spot. By the time we moved from the bathroom to my room it was light out and about 6ish in the morning. We let the kids have a few more minutes even though we were all in the room they still had no idea their sister had joined the world.
Meeting the baby
Faith was the first to wake up and then Aria, they right away wanted to meet and see the baby. Michael woke up next but stayed far away not wanting to meet her just yet and Nikolaus well he’s a preteen who needed his sleep and made sure he got all the time he needed by not moving from his bed. My mom arrived by 7:30am and of course cried right away with meeting her newest granddaughter. Faith also got to have skin to skin time with Brooklyn and those are memories we will have forever.
Large family coming through
I’m happy to say that my family is doing great we are adjusting to life as a family of seven and even managed to get everyone to school on Monday morning. Life for us continues and we just roll with the plans the best we can. We are beyond blessed to be complete and to have had such a wonderful experience that will be one we talk about for the rest of our lives.
One can plan as much as you want for something but when you are pregnant you learn you are no longer on your time you are on baby’s time, they will come when they are good and ready. You will feel many emotions and want them to just come out already, but babies teach you to have patience and just enjoy these moments that you will never get back.
Do you have dreams of going unassisted or having a large family?