Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Noah's Birth Story

After being monitored for a short cervix from 20 weeks and then being hospitalized for preterm labor at 33 weeks, we were pretty sure Noah would make his arrival before his due date. I was put on strict bedrest for two weeks after getting out of the hospital and was put on nifedipine to stop the contractions. I was actually surprised that I didn't go into labor immediately after coming off bedrest and the medication and told Josh I would be shocked if we made it past 38 weeks. 

We went to my 38 week checkup on November 14th and the first thing my nurse, Benny, said to me is that she was shocked I was still pregnant. I went to the bathroom to do my urine sample and heard a sort of popping sound. Something started leaking so I ran back to the exam room to tell Benny. The doctor came in to check me and verified that my water had indeed broken and I was dilated to 5 CM! We were all so excited!

We were admitted to L & D and my doctor told us that we would start talking about pitocin if contractions hadn't started by 6 pm. We had taken Hypnobirthing (childbirth classes that focus on preparing for a natural birth) and our goal was to have an unmedicated birth, so from about 2 to 4:30 we tried a few different things to get contractions started, including walking and rolling around on a birth ball. The contractions started in a normal pattern around 5 o'clock, about a minute long and a few minutes apart and that probably lasted for about an hour. They quickly picked up and got to 2-3 minutes long with very short breaks in between. Sometimes a new contraction would start just as the last one was starting to die down and they were strong. It was definitely overwhelming. 

Around 7, Dr. Arhcibald asked if he could check my cervix because the contractions were so close together and so intense. I was devastated when he told me I was only at a 6. I felt like my body had been doing WAY more work than that and I couldn't imagine doing what I had just done for hours and hours. He said that I was 90% effaced and that I would probably progress more quickly from that point on. After that I got in the tub and things just got more intense. My nurse Chetan had given birth to her child naturally using hypnobirthing techniques and she was incredible! She kept reminding me to breathe and relax and told me that she rarely saw moms as in control as I was, which definitely made me feel better. At some point I started crying and told her I didn't know if I could do it and she reminded that I was doing it.  I started to feel an overwhelming urge to push around that time so Chetan decided to see if I had made any progress. She checked me and immediately pulled the emergency cord in the bathroom. Then she said, "Breanne, look at me. The baby is right there and you NEED to stop pushing so we can get you to the bed". I told her I couldn't stop pushing and she assured me that I could, I just needed to breathe through it. She helped me breathe through the rest of the contraction and we quickly moved to the bed before the next one started. I had progressed from 6 CM to 10 in less than an hour.

Things got a little chaotic at this point. My doctor was on a conference call because he thought he had enough time. Because of how quickly everything happened, the doctor on call took a few minutes to get to the room, so we had another doctor and multiple residents and nurses rush into the room. I thought that having so many people in the room would bother me but I didn't care about anything else at that point. I pushed for about 10 minutes and he was born at exactly 8 pm with his arm next to his head! Meeting Noah for the first time was the most incredible experience! He came out crying but quickly calmed down and just hung out and looked around. He was so alert! He was seven pounds even and 19.5 inches long. Giving birth was a challenging but incredible experience and I'm so grateful that things went so smoothly and that Noah is in perfect health!

On a side note, I would highly recommend Hypnobirthing classes to anyone looking to have a natural birth. The reading, classes, and exercises taught me to relax my body completely and gave me confidence in my ability to give birth without medical intervention. You can visit here for more information or to find a class in your area.


  1. Breanne! You are so inspiring! I sure love my epidurals, but I will definitely look into and consider hypnobirthing on our next child! I can't wait to see you guys again and to meet Noah! He is gorgeous!

  2. I loved reading every minute of this, and I feel so proud of you for doing it naturally...just the way you wanted to! I found my nurse to be extremely helpful too in supporting my decisions...I'm so glad you had that!

    1. I'm glad you enjoyed it! I read your birth story as well and loved it! Hope you, Shane, and baby Cole are doing well!

  3. I love reading birth stories! The same thing happened to me, I went from 6 cm to 10 super quickly and had a strong urge to push. I wonder if part if that has to do with delivering naturally.

  4. As a mom of 3 who did it all natural with all of them, other than a slight Morphine attempt with the first because of too many people freaking out. But not enough to affect me since it came to me before too much I was allergic to it.. Each labor got shorter. My last I literally got to the hospital dilated to 9...

  5. It's amazing how quickly our bodies can move themselves, huh? And you don't look like you'd done any work at all - gorgeous, much? :)

  6. Sounds like you had a beautiful birth!

  7. I love your birth story, Breanne! I'm a fellow (two-time) hypnobirthing mama. The first time,I also had the feeling of being defeated at what seemed like slow progress and then went from 5 to 10 in about an hour. I wish more mamas could read this and know what their bodies could do without drugs! The second time went even better! Thanks for sharing your story!


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