Gage’s Birth | Indie Birth

Birth Stories

Gage’s Birth

April 26, 2011

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We are mamas and birth workers who decided to do birth differently– and bring others along with us. We are kind, fun to work with, and great at (lovingly) calling people on their bullshit when necessary. With 11 children and 16 years of midwifery between us, we’ve learned a thing or two along the way, and Indie Birth is our space to share it all with you.

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Gage’s Birth

I thought I would go ahead and tell Gage’s birth story. He’s 7 weeks old today. He’s already grown so much. He weighs almost 14 lbs!

I woke up at 2:00 am on April 19th to contractions. I was so excited to think that I was going to have this baby, after all, I was 7 days over the estimated due date and I was huge!

I went back to bed and waited for Michelle’s alarm to go off at 3:00 am. I knew how important it was going to be for me to sleep and rest as much as possible. When Michelle got up, I couldn’t even hold my excitement back, “I’m having contractions!”

Michelle was so excited, too, “Yeah! I’m calling in to work.”

Then we tried to get some sleep. We woke up about 6:30 am to send Drake and Gavin off to school. They were also excited to hear that the baby was soon to arrive and told their teachers at school. I just laid on the couch and napped in and out most of the day. I had sporadic contractions throughout the day. Michelle and I walked up to the bus stop about 3:20 pm to get Drake and Gavin. I was trying to walk to speed things up. I had been hoping to have the baby by then.

So it’s been more than 12 hours since I woke to contractions. I called our friend Lorraine to let her know I was in labor. She was to be present to help Michelle with guidance and direction during the labor and delivery. Lorraine came over about 5:30 pm to check in with us, see how things were progressing. It was still slow going, so Lorraine went to have dinner and came back a couple hours later. By then I was in the bath tub to relax and take the edge off some of the contractions.

Drake and Gavin helped Lorraine make comfrey burritos for my perineum after the birth. Michelle put the boys to bed about 8:30. I was now in our bedroom laying on the bed just contracting away! I sipped on a fruit and yogurt smoothie which a friend brought over to me. It was delicious! I knew it was still early labor because we were just hanging out in our bedroom talking and laughing.

It was close to 10pm when the contractions picked up some more. I really started to feel the intensity of each contraction. I was going from the toilet to the bed for hours, while Michelle and Lorraine tended to my every need. They were amazing! I got a warm blanket fresh from the dryer every 20 mins. The toilet was the perfect place for laboring. It was so comfortable to sit with my hips supported. When I grew tired of the toilet Michelle would help me over to the bed. I would lay on my side, my back, my hands and knees, then to the floor leaning on the bed with my belly hanging. I was having major hip labor! Michelle continued to support me with whatever I need. She put counter pressure on my hips with each contraction. The contractions were so prominent in my hips! I remember thinking, “I have never heard of hip labor!”

It was so late and I was feeling exhausted. Each contraction was getting stronger. I started to feel anxious. I asked for my herbal tincture, ER w/Gorse to calm my nerves. Lorraine had Valerian Root Tincture, which tastes and smells like rotten potatoes! She mixed it with orange juice, so it tasted like I was drinking orange juice mixed with rotten potato juice! YUCK! But, it helped! I got real sleepy. Michelle ran the bath for me and helped me into the tub. It felt like I was in there for hours just dozing. The Valerian slowed my contractions dramatically. It was a mixed blessing I suppose. I was able to get some well needed rest and start again. The water started getting cold, Michelle really had to coax me out of the bath tub.

Gosh, what time was it? I don’t even know, the hours were mushing together.

It was definitely the wee hours of the next morning, April 20th. Holy cow! It had been close to 24 hours. I thought your subsequent labors were supposed to be shorter…

The three of us were sleeping in between each contraction now. It’s amazing how one minute can feel like 20 when you’re in the middle of something so intense! Poor Michelle and Lorraine. They had been up for way too long and were just exhausted. They didn’t have the benefit of adrenaline to keep them going, they were running on empty and pure dedication! I was sleeping in the middle of our bed, Michelle was sleeping on the end of our bed, and Lorraine was sleeping on the floor.

All of a sudden I get this huge contraction. I literally feel the baby’s head move down, I swear, 3 inches! I yell, “He’s coming! I sit up in a half squat. Michelle and Lorraine fly up from their places. Lorraine is throwing out instructions, and I’m sure I remember them both running around the room in circles, asking each other where this or that is, and flinging things into a pile, and stuffing more chux onto the bed and under me. Ok, it was like a sitcom. I couldn’t laugh at the moment, but knew I would later.

I started panting quick, short, “Ho-ho-ho-ho-ho-ho.” It was so instinctual. The baby was coming so fast, I thought if I didn’t slow my body down, he would for sure fly out and hit the wall with a thud! I was telling Gage, “Slow down, wait Gage. Wait Baby.” “Oh, oh, ok! I flip myself over like a big fish, there was so much pressure on my perineum, I didn’t want to tear. Well, now I’m on my hands and knees. Crap the pressure’s at the top now! Oh, well, he’s coming now! I put my hand between my legs and use some counter pressure to ease the skin around the baby’s head. Michelle is behind me helping with the counter pressure also.

His head comes out, and in an instant his little body comes flying out into my arms, with about 30 gallons of water flooding the bed and drenching Michelle and Lorraine! So much for the chux… I look at the clock, it reads 3:58am. “3:55- it’s 3minutes fast.” I say. I’m so anal!

I tip him upside down to confirm the ultrasounds, yup, he’s a boy!

I snug him up to my chest with one hand while I maneuver myself to the far right corner of our bed, about the only dry spot. Michelle joins us in our little corner. We just gaze in awe of him. I offer him my breast and he mouths at it. I feel some small contractions, the placenta has detached, but I don’t feel like moving. Lorraine insists that I deliver the placenta. It’s freakin’ huge. I think about nibbling on it, but Michelle is sitting right here. I decide not to in front of her. ‘She’d probably ick out,’ I think to myself.

Michelle wakes up Drake and Gavin. They come in to meet their new brother. They both smile, say a few words of delight and flattery towards Gage. Then back to bed with their sleepy heads.

Michelle and Lorraine clean things up. We get settled in bed. We are both glowing with love. Lorraine heads out. It’s 5am. Drake and Gavin will be getting up for school in an hour. Yeah, we’re sending them to school, we’ve got to sleep!

Good Morning baby Gage!

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  1. Traditional Mom and Dad says:

    uh where is the father? I think that there is no father….please remove me from the mailing list….!

  2. Maryn says:

    Remove you? Gladly!! I am horrified at the lack of acceptance and compassion that occasionally shows itself…even on this “indie” website!! Thanks again, K, for a beautiful birth story!!

  3. Amanda says:

    How wonderful! Thank you for sharing your amazing story! Congratulations and enjoy your little man!

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We are mamas and birth workers who decided to do birth differently– and bring others along with us. We are kind, fun to work with, and great at (lovingly) calling people on their bullshit when necessary. With 11 children and 16 years of midwifery between us, we’ve learned a thing or two along the way, and Indie Birth is our space to share it all with you.

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