Iris and her husband, might just be the sweetest and most in love clients that I've ever had. They were always positive and willing to learn every thing about birth that I could teach them. They hired me early on and came armed with questions for each meeting, they took notes, and both welled up when we discussed their child coming into this world.
While they had a bit of fear about the unknown, they wanted to work through that, so they could welcome their baby into a calm and peaceful environment.
And together, they did just that...
At 11:30pm on April 24th I received a phone call form Ricardo that Iris thought her water had broken. They weren't exactly sure but after a few steps we verified that was the case. I suggested they call their provider and let them know and then take a nap while they still could.
My phone rang again right at 2am that Iris was feeling tightening every 5 minutes or so and they would like for me to come. I hopped in the shower and then headed their way.
I arrived at 2:42am to find Iris bent over the couch, Ricardo giving her a bit of counter pressure and their cute pup standing watch.
I helped Iris manage through what were now 3 minute apart surges and told Ricardo to gather things up. I called their midwife and let them know we were on the way.
Iris turned around and looked at me shocked, "Are you sure it's time?" I assured her that if we arrived to the hospital and that she wasn't far enough along they would allow for us to leave, but that based on the way she was moving, the way she sounded, and experience, that it was time.
She smiled, hugged me and said, "Good because this is really hard!" We slowly made our way down the hall and out of the building while Ricardo pulled the car up.
They live very close to Manchester Memorial Hospital where they had chosen to birth their baby to the access to the tub. Besides the birth center in Connecticut, Manchester is the ONLY hospital that allows for you to birth in the tub, if you choose to do so.
Iris was coping well, but things were close together. We made stops along the way in parking lot and in the elevator to manage through them.
When we arrived into the family birthing center, Maura from With Women's Wellness greeted us and brought us into a room. She did a cervical check at 3:40am and Iris was 6cm dilated, 90 % effaced and her baby was sitting at zero station.
Just 20 minutes later Iris started to feel a bit of pressure and requested another check. She was now almost 8cm dilated and the baby had made more of a decent to +1 station.
It was 4:15 am when we moved into the tub. Iris wasn't sure about a water birth, but I knew that being in the water could help her through this part of the labor. When she got in she calmed down and immediately looked more relaxed. She tipped her head back while rubbing her belly and said, "Come on Ari".
At 4:43am Iris' body began to push. We guided through her breathing around the sensations where she could to let her body handle most of the process.
Ricardo was so attentive. Everything I suggested or started, he would take over in order to help keep Iris as comfortable as she could be while in this phase of labor. He encouraged her, kissed her, whispered to her, and you could feel their love in the room.
Maura suggested heading back to the room at 5:30am to check on the baby and to see how she was progressing. A cervical check at 5:35am would show that not only was Iris fully dilated but that her baby was very low in her pelvis at +2 station.
Iris was so excited that she trusted her body and that her baby was almost here. She took few deep breaths through the surges and then eventually started engaging with them to help her baby come earth side.
At 6am, Iris and Ricardo's beautiful baby girl came into this world screaming. She was placed on her chest and Iris kept repeating the words, "thank you, thank you". Ricardo was so proud of his wife and enamored with them both.
Iris and Ricardo, I will forever be honored and thankful to have been allowed to be part of this journey with you. Iris you are more powerful than anyone would ever imagine. Calm and patient, full of love and kindness and also armed with an unmatched determination to stick to your goals.