My Birth Story | Hazel Mae

It was a Tuesday, the day after my 39 week appointment with my midwife. I had the option to do a membrane sweep if I wanted to that Monday, but I decided against it. I really wanted this baby to come on his or her own, and in their own timing. I know all too well that as much as you try, you just can’t plan all the little details. 

My friend had come over, I got girl time, she helped me clean my rocker, and the boys got a play date. It was a successful Tuesday and I went to bed feeling accomplished, ready for sleep. It was around 9 PM that I started feeling contractions—just as I was laying down for bed. At first, they were mild, so I couldn’t really tell. Am I having gas? Are these real contractions? Are things actually happening? Am I just cramping? After about an hour of being unsure and a trip to the restroom—it finally hit. This is real, these are contractions, and yup…it’s happening. Now, with both boys my water broke and THEN contractions happened. So I kept waiting to get confirmation that it was indeed labor with some water leakage, but, it never came. 

I downloaded the contraction timer app and started timing my contractions. After about 2 hours of that and breathing through them with Tim, I told him to go to sleep and get some rest. Because if it was really the real thing, at least one of us would need to be well rested and ready for the journey ahead. I called my midwife shortly after Tim fell asleep and told her contractions had been happening, and gave her the scoop. This wasn’t my first rodeo, so I knew the drill. I needed to lay down, rest and try to sleep through it to give my body the rest it needed. 

Fast forward to the next morning, and contractions had been officially happening for 12 hours as of 9 AM with no signs of water breakage. They were anywhere from 4 minutes to 15 minutes apart—truly all across the board! All throughout the night too.

I gave my midwife and doula an update, and we agreed we just needed to lean into the contractions and continue tracking everything. 

Come 2 o’clock, I knew things were changing. My contractions went from cramping/breathable, to more intense and painful. When they started to take my breath away, I knew I was transitioning. At this point, I had been in labor with contractions for 17 hours. Tim skipped work, since it was Wednesday, and we were just hanging around the house. The boys were playing, I was folding laundry, and just trying to relax every time a surge would hit. This is when I knew I had to make the decision to send the boys away. It was very clear that this was happening, and it was also very clear that I was unable to make progress with the chaos going on around me. By chaos, I mean my 1 and 3 year old. 😉

We called my mother-in-law and asked her to pick the boys up after nap time, and I also called my midwife and doula and told them to come on over at 3 o’clock. I wanted to have time to get the birth pool set up, actually be able to labor in it, and to have my team have plenty of time to get to me. Everyone showed up between the hour of 3 and 4 PM, and as soon as that happened I feel like my body really let go. I was in my space, it was safe, my team was there, my boys were in good hands…it was go time. 

Before getting in the tub, I wanted my midwife to do a dilation check. Even though it really doesn’t mean anything in the long run, I was hoping to get some sort of confirmation that I was making progress. Sure enough, I was dilated to 5 cm.—woo hoo! I got in the birth tub for about an hour, and that was so nice. I used to take baths weekly, but since we longer have a tub at this house, I haven’t been able to. Soaking in the warm water really helped me to let go and relax. Once the water temp started to go down, that’s when I was ready to get out and go to my comfort spot—AKA, my bed.

I got all dried off and laid in bed to rest. I was able to be in my own space, and put on my comfort movie…Cinderella. It was from this time (around 4 PM) to the birth that I just watched my movie, leaned into contractions, and took mini naps between surges. 

Come 6 o’clock, I was just about done. Almost 21 hours of labor, and I was starting to feel defeated. This was my longest labor yet. Contractions were still far apart, and baby STILL wasn’t here. Insert me getting frustrated, and quite frankly, pissed off. Lol! My midwife encouraged me at this point to use the bathroom. I hadn’t gone pee since before getting into the tub, which had been a few hours prior. She pointed out that if I had a full bladder (which I did, I was chugging water the entire labor) it would be in the way of pushing baby out, and it would be best if I emptied my bladder to make space for baby to descend into the birth canal. 

I very much did not like this suggestion (ha) because it required me to get up out of my comfy spot. But I was desperate to get this baby out, so I stood up and went to the toilet. 

After letting out a solid pee, I kid you not, I got THE urge to push and felt a head coming out. All within the same minute! Tim was holding my hand on the toilet, so I literally jumped on him and screamed I’m pretty sure. Ha! He carried me back to bed and it was go time! 

Up until the very end, my contractions never got super close together. They were still about 3-5 minutes apart up until pushing. This made for a slow and steady delivery, and holy smokes! There’s nothing quite like feeling the ring of fire and having your baby’s head hang out of you in between contractions. As painful as it was, there’s literally *nothing* that compares to this feeling. Call me weird, but it’s so cool and something I will never forget! It’s a high, an adrenaline rush that I’ll never get over and always want to chase I feel like.

On February 7th, at 6:26 PM, our sweet baby girl was born. After a long, but slow and steady labor, Hazel Mae Schlueter was here. Born at home, in our bed, surrounded by the best team. Seeing her come out and finding out after a long 9 months of not knowing that it was a girl…is the best surprise I’ve gotten in my entire life. It was 1000% worth the wait. 

We love you, Hazel!

XO,

Danielle

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