So the deluge of water had just broken...
Contractions became more intense, but still nothing like labor. I was still feeling my belly to make sure it was a contraction. Once I felt it in my belly, I knew that the back pain was going to start. I would say, "Contraction" and Mary (my sister) and David (my husband) would jam their hands behind my back and push into my lower back and hips to give counter pressure. I was confined to limited positions at this point because I was still hooked up to all kinds of stuff monitoring heart rates and contractions. If it was up to me, I NEVER would have labored on my BACK! Crazy hospital mentality. But it only lasted a short time, because transition was not far away. That sweet baby was coming out.
I remember just moments before I started pushing I commented about feeling her kicking and squirming. She even had the hiccups.
my midwife and the doctor coached me into a squatting position and we decided that I would test the waters (so to speak) to see if it was time to push. Yep...it was go-time. Squatting worked for a few good pushes and I got to feel my sweet baby's head with my hands. I didn't even know I wanted to do that until the doctor said it was right there and did I want to feel. I did...very much. Hello, baby! Once squatting didn't work anymore - Violet needed a little contortion work to work her strangely shaped body out - my midwife coached me onto my hands and knees. Now, this was incredibly tricky in a hospital bed attached to 2 monitors and an IV, BUT my support team twisted and lifted and I heard a few remarks (or made them myself. Who knows at this point) about it being a good thing I am so flexible and we made it into position. I remember having some humorous thoughts about my having been embarrassed about using a bedpan and now I was delivering in a hospital bed, bottom to the ceiling, in front of a room full of people. Awesome. Not quite the peaceful home birth I'd imagined, but at least they didn't turn the baby bearing spotlights on!
I delivered Violet's head and shoulders in this hands and knees position after just a few pushes - seriously, like a BOSS! But I was kind of surprised when I didn't feel her body slip out after her shoulders were delivered. She should have come out. My midwife (I think) coached me onto my side and my support people held my legs while I pushed one more time until that baby came out. I saw the doctor lift the baby up to David to announce if it was a girl or boy. He said, "Girl." I remember thinking, "Girl, now we don't have to worry about a circumcision decision." The funny things you think after delivering.
The doctor put Violet on my chest and covered her up. I heard people telling me to rub her. I rubbed her. She was covered in vernix and purple. I realized that she hadn't cried. She hadn't made a sound. She wasn't moving. She was purple. My joy, my anticipation about holding my sweet baby for the first time dissolved into panic. Someone take my baby and make her BREATHE!
As soon as the doctor got the cord cut and clamped, the neonatal people swept her away. I began to see the looks on the doctors' and nurses' faces - sheer panic, disbelief. They were lost and confused and scrambling around. And my perfectly orchestrated delivery began to crumble into a sea of unknown and fear.