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Birth Story Series: Caitlin

Updated: Mar 24, 2021

After having false labor for weeks, I finally got my midwife to strip my membranes on September 3rd, 2019 at about 7:00 in the evening during the same appointment that I basically had to beg my midwife to come to, since I hadn't seen her in two weeks.

She wasn't very into the weekly appointment at the end of pregnancy like all of my other midwives or OB's, so this was new territory for me. Little did I know, I would feel this way during birth, too.

The next morning, I did in fact go into labor thanks to the membrane sweep, just like it had worked with my first three babies, as well.

I woke up with contractions every 15-30 minutes on the dot from 5:15, until I got up for the day, at which point contractions got closer immediately and were 8-10 minutes apart for a few hours.

My husband had a job interview scheduled for that morning, and we needed a job for him so badly so we could move out of my in laws house, so we sent him off to that, and he instructed our 5-year-old that she was in charge of taking care of mommy, helping our 3-year-old go potty, because she had just decided to potty train herself the day prior, and making sure our 1-year-old didn’t get into trouble.

“I’ve got it handled, daddy”, said Bridget, and he was out the door.

Thankfully, my Mother-in-law was here with us so we never had to put a little girl to that kind of test. It was probably the only time I've been truly thankful for her being with me through something, and even looking back I probably would rather go through it alone. But either way, I knew she wouldn't leave if I screamed at her, so I let it lie and got through it. I tried to hide contractions from her, because she asked if I was having one each and every time, acting worse than my children.

I jumped in the shower and labored a little in there, but quickly got out because contractions started coming closer and I wanted Nick home with me, so I sat on the floor and stayed there in my laboring spot I created in my mind and stayed still until he got home. I didn't have any family I trusted to take care of our kids while we went to the hospital, which I thought was my only choice. So when we found a midwife to birth with at home, I jumped on it. The other option was to have my husband be at home with them, while I gave birth and recovered. So we chose to have them at my in-laws house while I labored and birthed. But that morning, I had a feeling they wouldn't do as well as I had initially thought, so I had a friend come pick them up at the last minute. Our little man stayed home with us to sleep, but when it became clear that the sounds coming from mommy were freaking him out, Nick's mother took him to her hair appointment with her.

I needed that break from her. I was thankful she had that appointment. In my mind, I had created a space where I did this alone. So having her leave, I was able to allow my body to get to completion and push the baby out the way I wanted.

They were gone for 30 minutes, and in that time, I not only got to completion, but I got down and labored like I have never labored before in my life. My husband didn't know what to do, because he hadn't been with me much when I planned labor. I got to the point where I knew I was in transition, and kept my mouth shut, except for looking my midwife straight into the eyes and I said, "I can't believe I CHOSE this. WHY DID I CHOOSE THIS?!"

For some reason, throughout labor, my midwife kept leaving the room and I felt like I couldn't keep laboring without her there, so I had my husband go get her every time she left. I don't know why I had to ask my midwife to be in the dang room, but it annoyed me so badly. I wasn't paying her to only clean up after birth. She knew I wanted to do it without her catching, but I didn't realize she wouldn't need to be there at all with how it went.

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