Angela was one of my second clients that I had the pleasure of doing complete care form the beginning of her pregnancy through the labor and postpartum period and it has been such a pleasure working with her! Angela was another mama who had an interesting story of early term births between 36 and 37 weeks with her first being induced at 39 weeks. However, these early term births were made even more interesting in that they occurred at home. Throughout her pregnancy, I worked with her and we discussed what could have been the cause for her early deliveries. We settled on several different reasons (as there is often not one glaring reason for these things) and worked hard to help her overcome these obstacles to give little one the opportunity to grow strong to full term and have a safe home birth.
I completed Angela’s 36 week home visit hopeful that she would carry for a few more weeks but disappointed, as I found her baby to be breech still (I found him breech at 28 wks and we were hopeful he would turn, she was attempting everything possible to make it happen)! We discussed her options and after talking with her husband, Angela opted to attempt everything again but an external cephalic version to get baby to turn. This baby was EXTREMELY active and she had felt he would turn head down soon. I decided to bring her in Monday for a position check and hoped all weekend that her efforts would help baby to turn! She arrived at my office Monday afternoon and we all held our breath as I placed the wand on her belly. Immediately, I could tell what position baby was in and what was in the pelvis but to make sure, I brought the device up to the top of her belly and breathed a sigh of relief. I printed off a picture of little one’s head down in her pelvis and told her to keep him there 😉 The next two visits were ones of excitement as she passed each milestone of a new and farther week! At 39 weeks, I scheduled her 40 week visit and we discussed how if she made it past 39 weeks, it would be the longest she ever carried a pregnancy. I could not wait to see how it all played out!
At 9:30am, I received a phone call from Angela, she had been laboring since 5:30am and wanted to give me a heads up that she was in early labor. I was relieved baby waited for me as I had just been off call briefly for an adoption conference I speak at and it’s really important to me to be present for my client’s deliveries! She talked to me a couple more times throughout the morning and afternoon and we decided to check back at 2pm to see where she was. I kept my team on alert as she lived about 40 minutes from myself and an hour from most of my assistants and I wanted everyone to be able to make it! At 2pm, I called and Angela reported the contractions were stronger. She seemed hesitant to have me come but I reminded her I lived 40 minutes away and she would still be laboring that whole time. The final decision was made that I should come. I called my team in at the same time so they could make it. I arrived at 2:45pm to find Angela in strong active labor. Her baby sounded awesome and a cervical check revealed she was 7cm! Angela had an AMAZING support system in her husband and sisters and I kneeled by her side as she labored in the birth pool. Angela kept reporting feeling an occasional urge to push but when she did it would cause pain in the front of her pelvis. I encouraged different position changes and movements as I was concerned she had an anterior lip (a small amount of cervix that swells near the pubic bone). After an hour of trying different positions, nothing relieved that pain. We opted for another cervical check and I found Angela to be complete. At this time she asked me to break her water and though I don’t like doing this, I wondered if this was cushioning the contractions and preventing a strong urge to push. After AROM at 5pm, Angela growled on the next contraction with an extreme urge to push and baby’s head hit her perineum quickly! I encouraged her to breathe and let her uterus push baby out to help lower her risk of tearing and at 5:05pm, with the help of daddy and some serious flips and turns to untangle baby from his cord, little Clark was on mama’s chest and pinking right up! What a blast it was to be a part of this mama and baby’s journey and home birth! Little Clark joined us on 10/18/2015 at 5:05pm weighing a sweet 6#15ozs! Oh and, mom did carry this baby the longest to 39 weeks and 2 days, success!!