#homebirth series: is it possible to have a short #labor? my hour-by-hour homebirth – episode 10

#homebirth series: is it possible to have a short labor? my hour-by-hour homebirth - episode 10 Claire Samuel

I want to break the myth of the first baby who takes hours to come to our world, after a difficult and painful long labor, leaving the mother totally exhausted. I am not the only one to have enjoyed an easy labor. I did my best to prepare for a home birth, reading about it and hiring an independent midwife. I had no idea how long my labor would be. What a beautiful surprise to have given birth within a matter of few hours! I started having very intense contractions around 9 pm and my amazing baby daughter was born at one in the morning. I am grateful for both the strong raspberry leaves herbal tea I drank throughout the pregnancy and for the inflatable birthing pool I used. My friend, my sister, it is definitely possible to give birth at home, within hours, without an epidural, without atrocious pain and without episiotomy.

Please find below an extract from my midwife’s notes about the day my baby daughter was born:

  • early labor since morning
  • irregular contractions
  • regular since 8pm
  • Claire is walking around at 9:30pm
  • at 11pm when midwife arrives: Claire is active and mobile, puttering around in the flat, drinking raspberry leaf tea, squatting during strong contractions which come every 3 minutes
  • emotional state is very well
  • snacking and drinking plenty of water
  • no vomiting
  • at 11:30pm contractions every 60 seconds
  • at 23:30pm: Claire in the shower, helps with contractions, quietly vocalising through these, sometimes singing and keeping nice and relaxed
  • midnight: strong contractions, Claire is moving around the flat coping well, can feel baby moving
  • contractions strong and long, membrane still intact
  • having sips of apple juice
  • 0:30am: pushing during most contractions now, can feel baby moving
  • vacalising, labor intense
  • 1am: Claire feels like being sick, contractions very powerful, feels afraid, wants to stop, isnt pushing anymore – midwife talks about fear being normal and that Claire is doing it anyway
  • Claire is very quiet and poised
  • 1:20am: birth! beautiful and quiet greeting, Claire scooped her baby, we haven’t seen yet if it’s a boy or a girl
  • 1:25am: baby to breast, cord still pulsing
  • 1:30am: out of the pool and in bed, nursing baby, blood loss approximately 200 ml, Claire lying on side
  • 2am: still nursing, cord still pulsing
  • 236am: birthed placenta
  • 2:50am: cord clamped and cut by Claire
  • 3am: vaginal exam by midwife: labial grazes, nothing requires stitches
  • 3:45am: resting and having a snack
  • 4:30am: midwife leaves

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