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Baby Natalie - A Water Birth at Home

A homebirth water birth in a birthin tub. Black and white image of mom in a sports bra.

A July 4th Home Water Birth Story - Baby Natalie

I awoke on the fourth of July feeling sort of labory. I knew the whole time I was pregnant that the baby would be born on the holiday of fireworks. I told Adam and asked him to hold me a little before he left for work because I was so excited. When Marcia got up we took Ian to café. After café we walked over to the park. It was a beautiful, sunny day. Ian ran around and was cute. It started to get a little hot so we went home. On the way I phoned Erin to tell her to come down. She squealed with delight. She was already planning to come to party and watch fireworks.

When we got back to the house I phoned Sena to tell her I was rumbling. She was surprised. At our appointment 2 days earlier she told me labor didn’t seem imminent. I was a little bummed out. She asked me if I had done anything to induce labor, like castor oil. I assured her that I hadn’t. Castor oil? Yuck. I told her I thought it was our trip to the mall that helped get me going. I scored a really cute pair of sparkle flip-flops and was quite happy about it. Sena told me she’d call me in an hour to see if I was progressing.

I felt like I was going to need lots of energy so I ate a snack and laid down for a nap. The phone woke me up. It was Todd. He asked if we were coming to the party that night. I responded that I was in labor and thought we’d be busy. He was so excited for us. He whooped and hollered and wished me luck. I phoned Adam to tell him to clean up and come home. He was already working on it, so that was good. Things were starting to pick up. I didn’t have to breathe through rushes, but I could definitely feel my uterus working. I decided to take a shower and primp my hair for what I felt would be a really fun event.

By the time I was drying my hair I was really starting to feel psychedelic. I felt no need to put clothes back on. I knew it was time to be naked. Erin arrived soon afterwards. Adam got home and started getting the hoses and tub ready. Jason and Marcia were on kid patrol. I could hear Ian and Isabel playing downstairs. They were being so cute.

I told Marcia I was ready to not make any more decisions. I was ready to focus on labor. Erin hung out with me, kept me company, and talked me through my rushes. I was starting to need deep toning breaths. I told her I was ready for Sena to come over and could she call. I hung out on the bed for a while and breathed through the rushes. The 1984 hit movie Trading Places was on the tube.

Someone drew me a bath. It felt awesome. Whenever I felt a rush I could kind of swim around in the water to keep my hips and shoulders loose. Erin stayed with me and kept me company. It was so nice to have her. She wore a fabulous smile. She added rose petals to the bath water as I floated. I thought the flowers were so pretty, but they quickly began to annoy me and Erin had to get them all out. She told me funny stories that I couldn’t follow and certainly can’t remember. She laughed as she spoke and made me feel at ease. Eventually the water cooled off and I was ready to move.

I tried going back to the bed, and I had a few rushes there. Then I felt pretty ready for the birthing tub. I went into the kids’ room and had to wait a little while for the tub to reach temperature. So I danced to India.Arie. Being at home was awesome. I felt the comfort and freedom to do whatever my body and the baby wanted. Whenever anyone tried to talk about something other than what was happening, I was direct about telling them to focus on me. Adam was holding my hand. It was really cool. I asked for Beth. I felt like the baby was very close to being born and I wanted everything to be in place. Beth was supposed to be there, so I really wanted her to come. I told everyone that I was really ready for Beth.

Then I got onto the birthing tub, and I knew I wasn’t getting out until after the baby was born. The water was the perfect temperature. I was rushing pretty hard. I just sort of swam around through each rush. I was really concentrating on breathing myself into a heightened state of relaxation. I was focused on not pushing, but staying loose as my body opened itself up for the baby to swim out. I could feel the ring of fire. It was strong, so I knew we were close. I told Erin and Adam that I hurt. They said I was doing great. The support helped me. I asked Sena to check how dilated I was. She said she would when I came out of that contraction.

When it was over, I felt a release as Natalie’s head came out. Sena showed her light on the little head. She asked me if I realized my baby’s head was out. I was like, of course. I was so psyched. I was at the top of the mountain, looking down at the descent, like snowboarding. Then her little body followed out with minimal effort. Everyone was so surprised. They were all expecting many more hours of labor. Sena asked me who was catching. I said, “You!” So she reached down, unwrapped her water bag, and laid her on my chest. She was slippery. She was warm. She was so much love. I felt my heart might burst.

It feels like it now, 3 ½ weeks later. My body and spirit are energized by the wonderful, experience. Ian keeps reminding me about the birth. He says, “Baby out Mama tummy.”

These are the best days of my life.

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