The Homebirth Story of Sophia Diane

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The Homebirth Story of our 10 pound baby girl!

It’s been three weeks since Sophia was born, and it has taken me that long to process her birth and be able to write her story.

Upon reflection, the agony of her birth has lessoned and the despair I felt has turned into utter delight over my lovely baby girl. However the memories of what was, by far, my most difficult birth are still there.

After such a difficult pregnancy that included first trimester morning sickness and vomiting, progesterone shots and the scare of a miscarriage, I was hopeful that my birth would be peaceful. The calm after the storm.

It ended up being the most intense part of the storm.

I shared awhile back that I don’t tell anyone my actual due date. It proved to once again be a wise decision as I ended up going 10 days overdue! I’ve had three of my children on my due date, so those 10 days proved an agonizing wait, but it was easier that I didn’t have everyone calling and texting me every day about being late.

Purple Maxi Dress with Crocheted Maternity Sweater

I’m getting ahead of myself though. Before I went into true labor 10 days late, I started labor one week prior, just 3 days over my due date. It was in the evening, I called my midwife and told her I had gotten to the point that I needed Sean to make it through the contractions. She came, we had the birth pool all set up, and two hours later everything totally stopped. I was so frustrated!

When labor finally started a week later I waited a few hours before letting anyone know. I look back and laugh, because I decided to ship a batch of orders for Deborah & Co. during early labor. Once I got to the point I needed Sean’s help through the contractions I called my midwife again. I normally tend to go pretty fast in my labors, so she didn’t want me waiting long to call her. She came around 8:30 PM, and I told her I was hopeful to have the baby by 10:00 PM. Little did I know that we had a long night ahead.

Our children went to spend the night with Sean’s brother (who is married to my sister, who came to be with me). Our oldest daughter had a hard time with leaving and wanted to stay. Anticipating our usual calm birth, we told her as long as she went into her room when we told her to that she could stay. We had not prepared her to be with me during the actual birth, and at 7 years old I didn’t feel she was quite old enough yet. She stayed in the living room, quietly doing a sticker book and looking at books while I labored. Looking back we wish she had not been here, but I think she will be ok.

Waiting patiently for her little sister to be born at home!

I started having horrible back labor and needed Sean and the midwife to press on my back when contractions came. We had the birth pool set up and I finally got in it. I’ve had water births with 4 of my 5 previous children and was eagerly looking forward to another water birth. It was yet another plan I had to let go of and surrender. Every time I got into the water my labor would totally stop!

Finally my midwife said she was going to leave and go to a local restaurant that was open late. She knows I hate being watched and sometimes she has to leave so I can labor alone. Sean and I walked our hallway and I walked up and down our steps while she was gone.

homebirth

At this point it was around midnight, my contractions really hurt and were very intense when they came, but they were only coming every 15 minutes! Not very encouraging. I talked to my midwife on the phone and she encouraged me to just go to bed and rest. She was going to come back, pack up her supplies and leave until things picked up. Having never had a labor that just wouldn’t progress like this, I was so exhausted and discouraged.

By the time she got back I couldn’t stay in bed because the contractions hurt so badly when they came. I got back in the water, and again the labor stopped. My midwife had me go lay in bed on my side, with one leg pulled up high and stay like that for 15 minutes and then turn on the other side. She said sometimes that helps the baby if it’s position is not right. Talk about pain when a contraction hit!

My sister and midwife were camped out with pillows in the hallway, and Sean and I were in our bedroom trying to rest through contractions. I was beginning to despair that this would go on for another 24 hours. This went on during all the wee hours in the morning, until 4 Am finally hit. I was crying out to the Lord for deliverance, just praying that this baby would come. I asked Sean if we were going to have to transport to the hospital, as I knew something wasn’t right. Labor had never went like this for me, where I had hard contractions but spread far apart with little progress.

My midwife had checked to see how dilated I was a few times by now, but she would never give me solid answers, just encouraging me that I was progressing. I know my midwife really well, and knew that meant she didn’t want to discourage me with the truth. I really was not dilating very well at all.

Finally I asked her to check me again. At this point she asked if she could try and help move things along and I wholeheartedly agreed. She ended up needing to move my cervix out of the way. It was the best decision ever. A few minutes later I started pushing a baby out!

I was flat on my back in our bed, in a total hospital position. I have never given birth like this before, and in my head I knew this was a horrible position, but it was needed for this birth. I was so tired and desperate to get her out, and contractions were still not coming frequently.

Feeling the need to get her out, I ended up pushing out a 10 pound baby without the help of contractions. :/ I don’t recommend this, but it worked. My husband said he really didn’t watch her being born, instead he was watching me push with all my might, trying to get this giant (for me) baby out. Our midwife had to help get her out. I am used to pushing a head out and the rest of the body comes. Not Sophia! Everyone started yelling at me to keep pushing after her head was out, she came out ever so slowly and with assistance.

Finally, she was born! In reality, pushing her out only took a few minutes, it just was intense and ever so painful. Sean and my sister were afraid I might burst some blood vessels they said I was pushing so hard!

After she was born the midwife put her on my chest, but I didn’t even look at her. I was so exhausted I couldn’t even support her. I was in an incredible amount of pain, and the look on my face shows it.

Giving birth can be a joyful thing, but also a very painful thing!

 

My midwife did the basic exam and cleanup, and then left so I could sleep. I was already falling asleep when she came to tell me goodbye, with Sophia tucked in beside me.

Resting in bed with a newborn baby

The next 24 hours were hard, I was incredibly sore. Actually I’m still sore if I stand awhile. This birth I’ve needed to be down and quiet longer than my other ones. It has taken a good three weeks for me to be up and around again.

In case anyone was curious, I did not have gestational diabetes. I know people commonly think that when large babies are born. She just was a big baby, and was 10 days late!

I can look back now and say I would do it all over again to have Sophia. We love her so much already, and I can’t imagine life without her. However, I really, really hope to not ever repeat a pregnancy like this one. πŸ™‚

If you are pregnant or just had a new baby, you might be interested in the Pregnancy & Baby resources found in the Ultimate Homemaking Bundle! During my recovery time with Sophia I’ve enjoyed getting an early look into the bundle and I’m so encouraged by all the resources. It’s only available for one week!

Comments

  1. Dear Caroline, congratulations on your beautiful and healthy baby girl! What a precious gift from God!
    My youngest sister is also a Sophia – such a beautiful name!
    Thank you for your lovely blog and the inspiration that it is – I just love visiting!
    Blessings and much love in Christ,
    Kelly-Anne

  2. HeatherHH says:

    Like you, my most recent baby was a 10-lber, and I needed the midwife to help things along by breaking the water. It was the first that I had to push without feeling pushing contractions. I ended up feeling very bruised and achey down there for several days which was a new experience for me. It was also my hardest labor, but by the grace of God, I made it through as did you. And yes, I’d do it all over again to have my baby.

  3. Elizabeth S says:

    I too am the mother of a ten pounder. πŸ™‚ I had had three little girls right around eight pounds. And then this pregnancy with no gestational diabetes and nine days over due. My labor was very short and intense and like you I couldn’t even hold my baby after the birth I was so done in. I do want to encourage you to take as long as you need to recover. Not to discourage but it took me a year to recover. If I got busy and skipped a nap I was sick. He was a hungry little guy and I think my body just struggled to keep him fed. I was up about four times a night to feed him. However I know you are not ready for this but there may be a niggling thought about the next one. My next one was nine pounds three ounces and was like a cake walk. Hopefully that was encouraging Caroline! Your posts and work bless me so. Thank you for all your hard work and sacrifice to keep this blog going!

  4. Congratulations on the birth of your beautiful baby girl!

    My 10 lb 12 oz baby is the only one who needed help getting his shoulders out. The doctor kept asking for hot water and towels. My big, little boy’s delivery was longer than my active labor. Since his birth, my deliveries have been much easier, save for my little footling baby.

    Enjoy your baby moon! May God bless you and your beautiful family!

  5. You did good, Mama. Every labor is so different. My 5th was my easiest and my 6th was my hardest. I think I expected each one to get easier as time went on. Enjoy your adorable family.

  6. Thank you so much for sharing! I love hearing fellow mama’s home birth stories. I delivered my 1st almost 3 years ago – a 9 lb. 7 oz at home. We were all shocked at how big he was. So amazing job on the 10-lber! πŸ˜‰
    And I so feel you with going 10 days over. Mine was 12 long days.
    I’m now expecting our 2nd and we’ve kept our actual date date pretty quiet this time and I’m fully expecting I’ll go late again. So if I go early or “on time” it’ll be a welcomed surprise.
    Congratulations, many blessings and much rest!

    • Susie white says:

      Yay! Congratulations! I just discovered your website and wouldn’t you know, my favorite topic: birth story!
      I’ve had two homebirrhs and all natural hospital births. My babies are chubbs. My last baby was a ten pounder. My first homebirth was an 11 pound 6 oz wowza! Sore is a polite word. All births are so unique and wonderful and unpredictable. You rocked it! A truly wonderful birth.

  7. Congratulations!! Thank you for sharing!

  8. All of the ebooks look great; but the homeschooling ones look especially helpful since this will be my first year!

  9. So many similarities to my 13 days past due 11 pounder. (Labor started days earlier and then totally stalled.) Although I have never been able to labor in water as it always causes me to stall. Congrats on your beautiful girl. And as other have said, this doesn’t mean any future babies will be so big. My 11 pounder was my 3rd birth and the next two were in the nine pound range. Good for you taking extra time to rest and heal. Labor is always a hard job and yours even more so. Be blessed.

  10. Thank you for sharing the birth story of Sophia! She is a beautiful little girl!

    In many ways your labor and delivery were similar to mine: I delivered our 4th, our first girl (Felicity Claire) on March 19th. She was our biggest as well, and labor was one of the longest I’ve had yet (18 hours). My labor progressed so slowly that at one point one of the nurses told me she didn’t think this was the real thing (after I’d been at the hospital for 6 hours already…boy was I mad at her, heh!). I was so discouraged that at one point that I broke down crying. My husband was wonderful through it all and helped me realize that I was okay and baby would be here soon, and God was blessing us with a safe labor (even if it was long). 4 weeks later, and hubby and I and our three boys have totally fallen in love with baby Felicity.

    God bless you and your lovely family!

  11. Thank you so much for sharing this story … it makes me think of the verse that weeping may endure for the night but joy comes in the morning!

    Also wanted to mention that I attended all of my mother’s home births, from the age of 22 months (which I remember – she was actually laboring on the toilet!) to 13. I am very grateful that my parents allowed and encouraged this … whenever I do have children of my own, I won’t feel like I’m facing the unknown because I have experienced a taste of it through my mother. I’ve seen the easier births – like in the birthing pool when she could barely feel the contractions – and the hard ones like when my little sister was in a strange position and she had to work so hard to get her out. I think some moms feel like it will traumatize their daughters to witness a birth, and in some cases it may, but I feel like it really helped me to realize that it isn’t some scary mysterious thing to be afraid of. It’s part of life! Sometimes it’s harder than others but I’m thankful that my mother was willing to let me experience it.

  12. Rebecca Armstrong says:

    Boy does this sound familiar! My oldest son was 2 weeks late and weighed 8lb 8 oz. – for me a huge baby. My labor went on and on and I didn’t dilate enough for his head either. The midwife ended up coaxing my cervix open and just prayed and prayed over the baby and me. She was so calm! Miraculously, he was born healthy and I didn’t tear at all. My oldest one (dd age 10) was in the dining room w/ my mother. I did worry that she would be traumatized, but she wasn’t. I would do it again! πŸ™‚ Bless you and your family!

  13. Jacqueline says:

    Wow, thank you for sharing!

  14. Wow, I can’t even imagine going through this. Due to preeclampsia, a bicornuate uterus and a placental abruption I had to be put under for an emergency c-section to deliver my daughter 5 weeks early. I’ve often felt sad and “cheated” out of having a natural delivery experience, but we both were minutes from dying. She was in the NICU 5 weeks, but now healthy. Thank you for sharing and helping me realize not every natural delivery is easy and uncomplicated… I really need to be more grateful of how fortunate I really am!

  15. Congratulations on a beautiful, healthy baby! Those days being over the due date are so long! My first 3 were each a week over their due date and the 4th the day after. I to can relate to having large babies, though my biggest at 12 lbs. was a much easier labor and delivery than my first, she was 10 lbs. 12 oz. Your story reminds me so much of her labor/delivery, after 14 hours of labor I was blanking out between contractions I was so exhausted, then came the worst part, pushing for 2 hours! That recovery took the longest of all. They are so worth it though!
    I just recently found your blog and have been enjoying it very much. It’s an encouragement to me to know that there are others out there who are in the same position in life as I am, homeschooling, homebirths, etc.

  16. I am so happy you shared this story so candidly because it goes to show that EVERY SINGLE PREGNANCY AND DELIVERY IS DIFFERENT and that we should expect the unexpected. I am sorry you went through all that pain and stress during your labor but I am so happy you were able to do it without pitocin or a c-section. God’s blessings come in all different ways and this three weeks of being out of commission was likely more than needed given the stress on your body and mind the entire pregnancy. Praise God for a healthy precious girl!!! Your midwife sounds amazing and so does your hubby!! God is good!!

  17. Congratulations!!
    I’m glad everything worked out n baby n you are healthy.
    Sophia is a beautiful name πŸ™‚

  18. I am so glad everything went right. It sounds like it was a trial of a labor.
    If you are interested, there are some studying that my mom and I (a midwife and doula) have done about some things you can do in pregnancy, even without a diognosis of GD to help with this. That is, if you are planning on more!

  19. My little Julia was 10 lbs. 4 oz. I Can relate! I feel like a super hero, and so are you! It took 3 years before my pelvis and hips felt right when I took a brisk walk. Go easy on yourself! In my own birth story, I remember grunting from the weight of my newborn as they laid her on my chest!!! The other baby in the hospital at the time was a 5 lb. boy. It was a funny sight to see my big baby and that tiny one side by side!

  20. Thank you for sharing your story. I am sorry that things did not go so smoothly for you. There are so many “perfect” home birth stories out there and you hear so much about women just keeping it all together and being in total control through their whole labor and delivery. . . but it’s just not always like that even if you plan and prepare as much as you possibly can. I’m glad that you were able to still have your baby at home as you desired.

  21. thank-you for sharing your story. I had a 10 lb. 10 oz baby girl a year ago. Your story sounds quite familiar. I have had 2 babies at home and 2 in the hospital. This last one was a planned hospital birth. When I got to 8 cm I stopped progressing. I know that discouraged feeling of realizing that no progress is being made and the pain seems unbearable. We finally decided to get an epidural, which did the trick for me. I was disappointed not to have a natural birth, but was glad I could have medical intervention when necessary. I hope you recover well and continue to enjoy your “big” little girl!

  22. So glad you and your beautiful baby girl are ok. I came across your blog because I’m interested in modesty, but this sounds crazy to me. Give me my c-section any day.

  23. Alisha M. says:

    Congrats! That’s great that you were able to have your beautiful baby at home, naturally. It’s fun to hear birth stories. Thanks for sharing!

  24. Congrats! I just birthed my third 10+ lb baby; this guy was 10 lbs., 9 oz. πŸ™‚ Since my smallest was 8 lbs., 10 oz., I’m used to good sized babies, but even I was surprised at this one, bc he just didn’t *feel* that big inside!

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