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Kari gave birth to a beautiful baby boy at home a few days after her own birthday! She took a Birth Boot Camp class with Regina Woodley and said, “I loved knowing that I had options! I thought I had to have a hospital birth and I got to have an AMAZING home birth!” She was thrilled to share her home birth story with us.

I began early labor about noon on my birthday (05/17/2017), hopeful for a birthday baby, but slowly over the next two days the contractions got longer and stronger. My husband started timing my contractions ‪at around 9:30pm‬ end of the second day.

My midwife wanted to come over and check me given how long my prelabor had been. She determined I was 4 centimeters dilated and I should try going to sleep. She advised either a glass of wine or some children’s Benadryl. My midwife and her nurse stayed with me while my husband ran into town to get some wine. He came back and poured me a glass, I took two sips before I threw up. The Midwife left us ‪at 11:30pm‬ with some Benadryl to try. I took the Benadryl and tried to lay down, which lasted about 20 minutes until I couldn’t handle it any longer and had to be in water. For me the water was absolutely magical!

My husband called the Midwife back and started filling up the birthing pool. It was now ‪12:30am‬. Labor got intense fast, I couldn’t even hold down water because of the pain I was in. I had to hmmm lower sounding letters to get through them: “”o””, “”m””, and “”n”” were the most productive. Positive encouragement also did wonders. Saying out loud during a harsh contraction “”It’s okay.”” and “”I’m fine.”” helped amazingly. Telling my husband I loved him and looking him in the eyes were very calming. Thankfully he let me squeeze the heck out of his hands and the midwife’s (the student midwife showed up about an hour and a half into active labor) supported my back and massaged my sciatic during contractions. I remember at one point I said “I don’t think I can do this!” The student midwife said very sternly “Kari, you’ve got this. You CAN do it.” That was exactly what I needed to hear and how I needed to hear it. Then suddenly after 3 hours of active labor I got really panicked and had to go poo and I was NOT going to poo in the birthing pool! I went to my husbands bathroom and sat down on the toilet, but the toilet was too high and that’s when my first debilitating pushing contraction happened. My husband helped me get on my toilet across the hall ,which is lower. I thought I was peeing, but apparently my water broke into the toilet. It was the biggest rush of relief. Then I had another worse pushing contraction and freaked out because I could feel the head crowning and was worried I was about to have my baby on the toilet and wouldn’t be able to get off. 

My midwife was able to physically move me onto my hands and knees on the bathroom floor. After that contraction passed she and my husband were able to some how magically convince me to walk back to the pool. At this point I just knew the baby was coming, I couldn’t make any decisions, I didn’t know what I wanted or where I wanted to give birth, I just knew the baby was coming. After one push back in the pool she told me to reach down and feel my baby. There were three wrinkly little folds of head crowning. I pushed 3 more times being told to touch my baby for encouragement after each and then the head was about 1/2 out. I could feel his little nose! They had me get on my hands and knees, 1 push later the head and body all shot out of me! 

I screamed and just looked up at my husband and said “We just had a baby!” Kelly (with baby still under the water) had me lay back into the pool and told me to reach down and pick up my baby. He was born ‪at 4:03am‬. I didn’t even check the sex, I just picked my little one up out of the water and put him on my belly. The cord was lightly wrapped around his neck so the midwife helped me unwrap him so he could reach my chest. Once he started crying I immediately knew he was a boy without even looking. I started crying. I couldn’t believe he was here and how perfect he was!

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