Five days later, I am still completely in awe of the amazing birth that the Lord allowed me to have with Cordelia Mae. I was so blessed to have a WONDERFUL natural birth even after being induced (as directed by the doctor after the concern over low fluid levels). I was supported through the labor and delivery by my husband, my mom, a great nurse, and a wonderful midwife. I delivered at a hospital that supported my desires for as little intervention as possible, and I received great support from the lactation consultants. But I'm getting ahead of myself...
All day the Wednesday before I was to be induced, I did whatever I could think of to try and get labor started. I sat on an exercise ball anytime I sat down, but I stayed really active all day and did squats and other stretches to try and get the baby to move into a good position (not sunny side up). We got everything in order for the next day (talk about a weird feeling... knowing I was going to have a baby the next day!). I even went to church that night. My mom got into town that night so that she could be present for the birth the next day.
I sat on the birthing ball a lot after that point. I don't think I ever got back into the bed after that. I spent a little bit of time in the birthing chair until I felt a little uncomfortable. My back hurt and I wanted Tad to be able to rub it. As I labored on the birthing ball, Tad rubbed my back and read Scripture verses over me as I labored. We had hymns and worship music playing for my whole labor. It was so uplifting!
I almost feel like I can't describe this as "labor" compared with what it felt like with Vera. This time, I was much less fearful, and with each contraction I opened up instead of clenching or fighting the pain. As every contraction came, I thought, "This is not pain, this is progress." I literally did not feel like I was in pain. I kept a very open posture, with my legs spread open over the birthing ball, my arms open wide at my sides, my mouth open as I breathed, and my head raised. I mediated on verses about not being afraid. In between contractions I was still talking and smiling (I promise!).
Tad placed heating pads on my lower back while I started to have much stronger contractions (around 2:15PM). I started vocalizing at this point (oohhhhhh sounds). I felt a little nauseous and began to get more focused. I wasn't smiling in between contractions anymore, but I still thought I had a few more hours to go. My mom described me at this time as "in the zone."
We waited probably 45 minutes to clamp and cut the cord. She was all mine :) and no one else could hold her. I am so glad we didn't cut the cord until it had stopped pulsing. My midwife didn't rush me to birth the placenta, but when I was ready, I pushed that out without a problem. It was all intact and she explained the parts of it to me (much to Tad's disgust). :)
We announced Cordelia Mae's name and called a few family members. They wanted to know her stats, but Tad said "um... she's still connected!" After a while, they did clean her up and prepare to weigh her. Everyone in the room took a guess at her weight (I said 8 lbs. even). My mom, who hadn't held her yet, said 8lbs. 3 oz., which was exactly right! Cordelia was 20.5 inches long, which was Vera's exact length too. She has dark hair also like her big sister.
We appreciate your prayers for this pregnancy and delivery... they were definitely answered!