Finally, my body felt the urge to push. I changed positions and started pushing with all my might, thankful that the marathon would soon be finished.
Hours went by.
I pushed in every position possible. More hours went by. No baby.
Finally, the midwives asked me to go sit on the toilet so they could assess me. The head midwife noticed that our baby was behind my vaginal wall and that I had been pushing against it for over three hours. She pushed the wall back and my water broke instantly.
She apologized for not having checked me sooner, but on my birth plan I had requested to always check myself. I was so tired by this point I didn’t have energy to speak let alone to be upset with her. After all, she was respecting my wishes.
I went back to the tub and began to push, for real this time. After two hours, Ivy’s head started to appear. I allowed my body to do the work, barely helping at all, to avoid tearing. Pushing a baby out is the most animalistic feeling because the body truly knows what to do. At this point, my affirmations changed.
Inhale: I surrender to my body.
Exhale: My body knows what to do.
I mentally repeated this over and over with every breath in and every breath out. Without realizing it, I started to roar like an animal with my exhales and pushes. I was certain my labour was coming to an end.
After nearly seven hours of pushing, I looked to my midwife with desperation and asked if she had forceps or something to help get my baby out.
I was exhausted.
She assessed my vitals and learned that my heart rate was going down. She knew I needed help.
She told me to get out of the tub after my next contraction and to walk to the bed because she was going to help me. With Ivy’s head half out of me, I crawled out of the tub by myself, walked across the room to the bed, climbed up on it and got on all fours. I didn't realize at the time how much STRENGTH this took but I managed with ease.
I gave one last HUGE push, my midwife put her hands up me and pulled out our little Ivy.
Within seconds, I was holding her.
Ben and I looked at each other with so much joy and disbelief. I did it. I was trembling and feeling such a euphoric high of reaching the FINISH LINE that I forgot to check if she was a girl or a boy.
After we checked, we learned she was Ivy – the baby girl we knew we were going to meet all along.
Ben cut her cord and helped the midwives check her out while I received several stitches from second degree tearing. Ivy’s right hand was pressed up against her face, which is why I couldn’t get her out myself. I also received a shot to prevent hemorrhaging because as soon as she came out, I began to lose a lot of blood.
After we were all cleaned up, we cuddled in bed as a family. The midwives brought me some toast with almond butter and juice and then two hours later, we took our new little Ivy Bird home.