Friday, July 19, 2013

Hadley's Birth Story

My second daughter was born 4 months ago and I am just getting around to completing her birth story with the help of my memory, my husband memory and our doula's notes.  I figured this blog is the perfect place to share it.  With our first daughter we planned an unmedicated birth but ended up being induced at 37 weeks, 6 days due to expected IUGR.  Our second daughter arrived on her due date of 3/13/13.  We were very fortunate to have an amazing uncomplicated, unmedicated birth that lasted just over 5 hours. 

Dunlop birth story
Florida Hospital Tampa - Women's Center
4:13 am
Hadley Lauren
6 lbs, 15 ozs, 19 in

Around 9:30pm on March 12, 2013 I was working on a sewing project in my craft room when I felt a sudden pop.  It felt like my pants were suddenly very wet and because I was afraid to stand up I started calling for Ryan out in the family room.  After a few shouts he came into the room and I told him that I was pretty sure that my water had broken.  He helped me get into the bathroom and into the shower.  I decided to take a shower while he called our Doula, Tara.  I continued to feel my waters leaking and noticed that they were clear but the leaking was frequent. 

Ryan left a message for our Doula and she called back shortly.  After discussing our options she encouraged us to stay home for a bit and rest.  She told us to sleep for 2 hours and then give her a call.

After getting off the phone with our Doula, I put in a call for my Doctor.  Dr. Jones was on call that evening and he returned my call after a few minutes.  I notified him that my water had broken but that I was not having any contractions (this was around 10pm).  He said that because my water had broken they would want to check me and that I should get to the hospital when I reasonably could. 

After getting off the phone with my doctor I began to pack our hospital bags so that after we got up we would be ready to leave.

I laid down in bed with towels and puppy pads underneath me and tried to rest but of course my mind was racing.  Around 11pm I started to experience what I thought was a contraction, so I started using an application on my phone to time them.  At 11pm my contractions were about 10-12 minutes apart and about 40 seconds long.  By 11:30 I had progressed to 8 minutes apart and also about 40 seconds.  At this point I did not feel that I could stay in bed any longer but that I needed to get up and move.  I went out to the family room so that I could walk around and breathe without disturbing my husband who was still sleeping.  I put on the Keeping up with the Kardashians marathon to take my mind off of the contractions.  I would sit on the couch and relax in-between but then stand up and walk while vocalizing, circling my arms and taking deep breaths during the contraction.

By midnight my contractions were 5-6 minutes apart and they stayed that way until about 1:30 in the morning.  Ryan had called Tara around midnight or 12:30 and she was going to feed her son and then be on her way.  At 1:30 she had still not arrived and I knew that it was time to go to the hospital.  I ate a part of a banana quickly because I knew it was the last time I would eat for a while.  At this point my contractions were about 4-5 minutes apart.  I had Ryan call Tara and let her know to meet us at the hospital.

We arrived at the hospital around 2am.  I was answering questions at the desk and providing my insurance information all while experiencing contractions about 3 minutes apart.  They got us to a room and Tara joined us shortly afterwards.
After arriving I did not track my contractions anymore but Tara noted that at 1:35 am, they were 5 minutes apart.
The nurse did the first check at 2:15 am and I was 6-7 cm.  I felt a little discouraged at this, but Tara assured me that I was making super progress and didn't have very far to go.

Once we got to the room, my contractions were very intense.  I got through them by leaning on Ryan, having him assist and support me to squat and vocalizing.  Tara was great and was able to help me with breathing, vocalizing properly, and reminding me to sway my hips.  She also used the rebozo to squeeze my hips, do belly lifts and counter pressure which brought significant relief. At this time I was feeling a lot of pressure and starting to feel the urge to push
The nurse checked me again at 2:55 am and I was 8 cm almost fully effaced and the baby's head was at 0 station!
I wanted to lie down and rest for a little while as I had not been able to earlier. Tara gave me some ice chips and Ryan soothed and encouraged me. Tara reports that I was feeling a bit fatigued and concerned how much longer I would be able to go on. I had made it through transition!
After transition I remember that during contractions it changed from pain to just a weird pressure sensation.  I still felt like I wanted to do squats with Ryan to relieve this feeling.

The nurse checked me while I was resting at 3:15am and at 3:28 am I was 9 1/2 cm and the baby was at +1 station.  Even though I was having serious urges to push the nurse stated that I should try not to as there was still a tiny bit of my cervix present and it would be dangerous to push.  Of course my body took over and I couldn’t help but push a little; pushing definitely relieved the strange pressure.
At this time I really felt like I wanted to deliver in a squatting position so Tara set out to find the squat bar while the nurse paged Dr. Jones. While waiting for the doctor we continued squatting next to the bed and resting in-between.
When the nurse checked a final time at 3:57 am, I was 10 cm fully effaced and +2 station!
We had to wait for the doctor to get in and situated, the doctor would not allow me to squat like I wanted.  Tara did angle up the bed so that I was in a semi leaned squat.
At this point my contractions were very far apart and I was able to rest.  I remarked how it was funny that we had been waiting for the doctor while I wanted to push but then as soon as he arrived I was in-between contractions so we all ended up sitting around and looking at each other for a few minutes.
Finally I could feel that contraction coming and started pushing at 4:08 am, 5 minutes with one good long contraction and Hadley was born at 4:13am! We didn't know the sex of the baby, and really thought we were having a boy, so it was a giant surprise! :)  They took the Hadley to the isolette to take her temp, ap gar, etc., her ap gar’s were 9/9.  I kept asking to have her so that I could try and nurse and she was finally given to me around 4:34 am. She latched right on and continued to try and nurse until around 5 am at which point they started to transfer us to our room.  I felt really good after the birth, the rush of the endorphins and the excitement of the baby left me feeling amazing.  I felt like I could have walked to the post-partum unit, but I allowed them to wheel me and Hadley in a wheelchair instead.  Upon arrival in our room I stood next to Hadley in the warmer.  The nurse was very surprised to come into the room and find the mom next to the warmer and shouted to the other nurses, “this is the patient, she’s standing right here and not in bed?!”  After a few minutes we were all settled and able to rest for a bit.  We were discharged the next morning, only 32 hours after arriving at the hospital. 


  1. Great story! I am so impressed by you doing natural labor!! And Hadley is so cute too!!

  2. I love birth stories! We didn't know if our Hadley was going to be a boy or a girl either. (My husband was really hoping for a boy...) I had an unmedicated birth with my first and it was FANTASTIC but my labor was HG was a lot longer and unfortunately a totally different experience. Oh well, she was also 2 1/2lbs bigger than my first so maybe it was a good thing?? (I'm just saying that to make myself feel better :)

  3. It was such a special birth! You guys worked together so well as a team and there was so much love and excitement! I feel quite honored to have been there! =)