I think I posted here that I had been having contractions on and off for a couple days before Peanut was born. I kept calling the midwives thinking I was getting ready, but the contractions would then stop. Finally, Thursday evening I had bloody show and went to bed with contractions that were 6 mins apart. I woke up at 11:30 still having them (every other night they had stopped when I slept) and they were a bit more uncomfortable. I slept on and off all night and they kept coming, but they weren't getting closer together or more intense. We decided to keep bean home from school Friday just in case and sent her to stay with our neighbor for the day.
We already had a nonstress test scheduled for 10am so we went to that--baby looked good and I was contracting away at 4cm. They sent us home to rest and told us to call when contractions were 4 mins apart. We went out for breakfast and then the boy decided to go next door to play with the bean while I napped on the couch. At some point around 1pm I realized I was no longer sleeping through the contractions and was needing to focus when I had one. I decided to take a shower and thank god I thought to text the boy before I did. At this point I felt like something was different--I was having to really concentrate to get through the contractions and was keeping my eyes closed between them--really starting to focus inward. The boy came home and asked how far apart they were, but I couldn't pay attention to timing them. The boy timed a couple at 4mins and one at 3mins, so we headed back to the midwive's office.
We arrived at 2pm and I still felt like we had a lot of time, so we were both shocked when the midwife checked me and I was 7-8cm. We headed upstairs to the birth center and the boy started calling people to hurry and meet us there. I got in the tub and labored there for about 1/2 hr. The whole experience was so different from the bean--I was focusing to get through contractions but then just having normal conversations and joking between them. I still felt like we would be there for hours.
At some point when I was in the tub, things changed again and the pressure in my pelvis was too intense. I got out and the midwife suggested I sit on the birth ball. That really helped for about 4-5 contractions and then I started to feel pushy. I had been telling everyone for 9mos that I did NOT want to push on my back but for some reason I turned to the boy and said, I'm gonna do it on my back! I just felt like I didn't want to hold myself up anymore. The boy argued with me and we never really settled the matter before a huge contraction hit that made me stand right up.
With the next contraction, I leaned on the boy's shoulders and pushed. I felt my membranes bulge and then my water burst all over the boy's feet. I don't really know why but I got a little hysterical after that (although I laugh so hard now thinking back on the expression on the boy's face). I remember the midwife telling me that everything was OK, that my water had just broken and I was saying I know, I know, but still kinda freaking out.
I climbed up on the bed on my hands and knees, fully intending to flip over onto my back, but another contraction came and I had to push. I heard the boy ask if the baby was crowning and the midwife said no, but before we knew it I had another contraction and I felt his head. Another push and the head was out. One more each for the shoulders and the body and peanut was born. Six pushes and six minutes after my water broke! Out of all the positions I could have been in, I had not planned to push on my hands and knees but there really wasn't time to think that through. There also wasn't time to set up the video recorder, or the mirror that I had wanted so I could see the birth. Although my total labor was 16hrs, I was able to pretty much ignore the contractions until the last 3hrs, so it felt like it went very fast.
Peanut was born at 3:45pm. Bean had planned to help catch him, but in the end she was nervous about how much noise I was making and she didn't want to touch the blood so she just watched. She actually wouldn't touch the Peanut until we had him all cleaned and dried because she didn't want any blood on her. We spent so much time preparing her for the birth and for her new brother, but I guess we didn't talk enough about that! Because of her reaction, I was worried she'd be upset, but she got over it quickly and she's pretty excited now that she got to see it. She loves her baby brother so much!