October 7, 2018

Farrah’s Home Birth

Of “Cassidy Jean Arens”


      “Prodromal labor” had been going on for weeks, so when I started having contractions at 10 p.m., on July 1st, I didn't think it was the real thing. I was already 8 days past my due date at this time, so I didn't know when everything was going to happen at this point. They were far apart at first, around 10 minutes between them. They did seem a bit stronger than the usual Braxton Hicks I'd been having. I sat there for about an hour wondering if this was it. My body was screaming at me to sleep and I couldn't stay awake any longer. Well, I'm glad I went to bed…..

It’s about to begin…

      At 3 a.m. I opened my eyes and felt a gush. I thought that was weird I don't think that was pee. I got up and went to the bathroom and more liquid starting pouring out. It's like my body woke me up right when my water was breaking because that's definitely what it was! I got sort of an adrenaline rush and got excited thinking "Yes! this is finally happening!" I went to my living room and started bouncing on my exercise ball. Full blown contractions started happening about an hour later at 4 am. I decided to get in the shower before I started waking everyone up. I didn't know how fast or slow this labor was going to be. This was going to be my first labor experience with no medical interventions or medications. At first it seemed to be going quickly, but boy I ended up being wrong.

      I got out of the shower and bounced for awhile longer on the ball. I ended up calling my midwife, Jessica Tiderman, around 5 or 6 a.m. to let her know it was finally happening. At that same time, I woke up my boyfriend to let him know he would not be going to work that day. My children started to wake up around 7 a.m. or so, and my mom came over after working 3rd shift to help clean my house so it looked nice for the birth. At this time, my labor started to slow way down, probably from all the commotion and not being able to focus. I was going to let my kids stay to watch their sister be born, but I quickly decided against that and had my grandma come pick them up.

      My midwife came over to check on me around 10 or so. After that she decided to go to her office for a few appointments and come back later as we could both tell that labor was going slowly. When she left my sister, Emma, showed up and helped me set up the birth pool in the living room. Not long after she came, my photographer showed up as well. My midwife had her apprentice, Beth, come to my house until she could get there as well. And then we waited and waited.. My labor was so slow for a long time. Things didn't really start picking up for a few hours. I got in and out of the pool, walked around my house and tried to get things moving.

      I'm not totally sure on times here because I was not keeping track and looking at times can also discourage you when you are just ready for your baby to be out. I'd say around 9 p.m. I started hitting transition. Instead of being calm and collected and able to breathe through contractions I started to lose it. I was crying and starting to get loud. It seemed like that went on forever and my midwife suggested I get out of the pool because the positions I was in were not working anymore. I agreed and got out.

      At this point, I was shivering so bad and just a mess. My blood pressure was spiking pretty high and I started to get nervous. I sat on the toilet for a little bit and Jessica gave me two homeopathic remedies. One for the shaking and one to try to get my labor moving more quickly. After that I went to lie down in my bed for awhile. I remember my sister petting my head and talking to me calmly to relax me. It really helped. I ended up falling asleep for a bit, but got awoken again by some intense contractions. I sat up and felt like I needed to go sit back on the toilet. This is where things got crazy! Once on the toilet I felt a very strong contraction and could feel my body bearing down. With the next contraction I could feel my body bearing down again and it made me want to push. When I pushed I felt a big pop (second bag of water perhaps) and her head was crowning instantly! I said "oh my she's coming now!!" And everyone went crazy trying to get into the bathroom.

      My boyfriend and Beth were holding me up so she didn't fall into the toilet (haha), Jessica was kneeling on the floor in front of the toilet to catch her, my photographer was standing in my bathtub to get photos, and my sister off to the side watching in amazement. It seemed like I pushed for much longer than it actually was. Maybe about 20 minutes. Once her head was fully out I only needed to push slightly and the rest of her body came out quickly.


      She had a nuchal (around the neck) cord. Jessica unraveled her and handed her to me. She was so beautiful and I loved her as soon as I saw her. I felt so much relief. My first thoughts were that she looked so much like her sister, Sierra.

      After “41 weeks and 4 days” of pregnancy, “23 hours of labor”, and so much craziness. Cassidy Jean Arens was born at home, in the bathroom. She was 8 lbs 15 oz and 20 inches long. Having a homebirth was one of the best experiences of my life! I was able to remain calm during most of labor and contractions. It was the best feeling to have my baby right there in the comfort of my own home. No noise from the hallway, no nurses coming in to bug you every 15 minutes, no being poked and prodded all the time. Truly just a wonderful, fulfilling experience of trusting my body to do what it was supposed to do. I have no doubt in my mind that if I ever have another child, they will also be born at home.