Just four days before she was due with her fourth and final baby, Raychel found out that he was frank breech. Luckily for her, her midwives are very experienced in breech birth, so even though it took her a day or so to get over the shock of it, she knew she would continue with her plans of birthing at home.
On the day she was due she had some sporadic contractions, but nothing that seemed like it was going to go anywhere. I spent some time with her but eventually she sent everyone back home because she knew it just wasn’t time yet. The next morning, however, her contractions changed and she knew it was time to call everyone back. When I got there, her midwives were already there and she was already in the birth tub. I could tell that her contractions were different than the day before because she was very focused and couldn’t talk through them. I was amazed at how relaxed she seemed between them, though. She was talking and laughing and enjoying her family. It was so sweet to see.
As her labor progressed, she had requested to be checked a few times. Dilation was very slow, so her midwives suggested she get out of the tub for a while in the hopes that gravity would aid her body in moving her baby down. After laboring both on a birth ball, and standing up for a while, she started feeling discouraged. She asked to be checked again and was told she was still at 5cm, where she had been for the last 5 hours. Everyone left her room to let her rest, and the midwives decided to call a local doctor and see if they could take her in for an ultrasound to determine if there was some reason for why things weren’t seeming to change. As the birth team stood in the kitchen trying to formulate a plan, we heard her yell from her bedroom. Her husband told us that she said she’d felt like something was coming out, so one of the midwives checked her. Surprise! She was complete, and Silas was engaged, bum first, ready to make his entrance!
She got into a pushing position on her hands and knees and her water broke almost immediately. She started pushing gently, easing him out. Pretty soon we could see a little bum! It was incredible to watch him be born! First the bum, then one leg popped out, then the next, then the torso, both elbows, then one hand, and then the other hand, and finally the head! It was like watching him fall gently and slowly into a sitting position beneath her on the bed. As soon as he was fully out the midwives caught him and handed him to Raychel.
Her daughters both immediately came in to meet him. They were so excited and obviously already in love with him. Raychel snuggled and nursed him for a while, and shortly after she delivered the placenta, her midwife helped her cut the cord. He was then examined, and everyone was shocked to hear that he was 8 lbs 14 oz. Nearly nine pounds! Congratulations to the warrior mama, Raychel, and her whole family. I am so thrilled to have been able to capture his birth for you.