Robyn, a mother at our Cary, NC birth center, shares her story below of the (very!) quick, yet beautiful birth of her third child, a little boy. Here is Teddy’s birth story.
After the tour, we both felt incredibly impressed with the staff, the facility, and the wealth of information that they provided. About two months after the tour, we found out we were pregnant!
A Precipitous Labor: Teddy’s Birth Story and Video
My Baby and Company experience was my third birth. We moved to Raleigh from Norfolk, Virginia, where I delivered my two daughters at a birth center within a hospital. I absolutely loved my birth experiences at this hospital in Virginia, so when we moved to Raleigh and my husband and I decided we wanted to try for our third baby, we immediately began searching for the ideal place to deliver. We soon realized, with much disappointment, that there were no hospitals like the one we had delivered at in Virginia. Thankfully, a doula friend of mine in the area told me about Baby and Company! I immediately started doing my research. The center in Cary had just opened when I started looking into it. I began to get very excited about the possibility of being pregnant again and being able to deliver at a stand-alone birth center. My husband was not entirely sure about being out of a hospital but understood and supported my desires for another unmedicated birth in a space where I felt safe and supported. We agreed that we should call and set up a tour of Baby and Company. After the tour, we both felt incredibly impressed with the staff, the facility, and the wealth of information that they provided. About two months after the tour, we found out we were pregnant!
Photography and Videography by Raleigh Birth Photography
From the beginning, Baby+Company offered me the best possible support system. The facility is beautiful and welcoming, and the staff is exceptional in every way, from greeting and check-in to the actual visits with the midwives. I never felt rushed or hurried, and they were always knowledgeable about and receptive to my questions.
As my due date approached, I became even more grateful for the Baby+Company staff. My due date came and went (completely different from my other two birth experiences!), and I continued to feel reassured that I had such competent professionals to empower me through the process of delivery and birth. Around 12:45 in the morning on June 15, I woke up suddenly with what I thought was a stomach ache. I thought I needed to go to the bathroom, so I got up and headed to the toilet. Once I sat down, I felt and heard a pop. My water had broken. I yelled to my husband James and told him to call our birth photographer and midwife and let them know what happened. James spoke with Angela, the midwife on call, and told her what was going on. At this point, I was still on the toilet working through what were becoming pretty intense contractions. I told James to tell Angela that I didn’t need to come in yet because I was still able to talk through the contractions. While he was talking with Angela, I text messaged my parents to let them know that tonight was the night, and they should be ready to head over to watch our two daughters. I told my mom that they didn’t need to leave quite yet.
About five minutes after texting my mom and James hanging up with Angela, I was yelling at James to call everyone back and tell them we needed to leave immediately. My contractions were getting closer together and much more painful. I had to get on my hands and knees to get through the extreme pain. I started to become frantic that we weren’t at the birth center yet, as I was really feeling it. I continued to crawl around on my hands and knees waiting for my parents to arrive. James rushed around making sure the dogs were let out and grabbing my bag. For some reason, I was adamant about wearing a certain pair of sandals. Unfortunately for James, he didn’t know which pair of the million pairs of sandals I own were the ones that I wanted. This led to my berating him over and over again until he found the right ones (we all got a good laugh about this after everything was said and done). After what seemed like an eternity, my parents finally showed up at about 1:20am. I somehow managed to stand up and walk towards the car. I passed by my parents in the hallway and couldn’t manage to say anything to them. I found out later that my mom told my dad, “I don’t think she is going to make it to the birth center! I’m really worried!” I crawled into the backseat of the car and leaned over the car seat. I only felt comfortable on my hands and knees. James was speeding the entire way to the birth center. He told me later that he was not going to stop if a cop tried to pull him over! At this point I was really in a lot of pain and praying that we would make it in time. I did not like the idea of delivering the baby in the car!
We arrived at the center at about 1:35am. James grabbed the bag and we headed in. Angela greeted us at the door and immediately asked to examine me in an exam room. I dropped to my hands and knees and told her very fervently that I could not and would not go into the exam room. She suggested we head right to the birthing suite. Once in the room, she asked me if I could lie down on the bed for her to examine me. I again told her that I could absolutely NOT lie down and immediately dove to the floor on my hands and knees. I remember being extremely hot and yelling at both Angela and James to turn up the A/C. I also asked Angela to start the water in the tub. Little did I know we would have no time for the tub! Angela was finally able to check me at about 1:40am and told me I was 9cm. I was relieved that I was already so far along as I was worried that I was feeling so much pain but wouldn’t be dilated very much. For the next ten minutes, I worked through my contractions on my hands and knees. Finally, around 1:50am, I climbed onto the bed (still on my hands and knees) and started to feel the powerful urge to push. I wasn’t really aware of what was going on around me at this point as I was really only aware of what was happening to my body. Jualeah had arrived at some point and was there assisting Angela, and our birth photographer was only minutes away. Around 1:53am I started to actively push. Amanda, our birth photographer, walked in the door RIGHT as I began pushing. I remember envisioning Teddy moving down and out. I kept concentrating on that thought and on the blissful feeling that I would have once I laid my eyes on him. I was thankful that I knew going into this labor about that sweet heavenly euphoria you experience once your baby joins you outside the womb. It’s a feeling like no other I have ever experienced, and I’m sure never will again. At 1:55am, our sweet Thaddeus James (Teddy) was passed from Angela’s hands into James’s and then into mine. Teddy was my fastest labor at only about an hour, and he is our biggest baby at 9lbs 2oz! Almost three pounds heavier than our first baby!
The initial anxiety of finding a birth center followed by the ensuing months of pregnancy culminated in an incredibly memorable birth experience. Angela and Jualeah could not have been more supportive of my birth plan, which allowed for delayed cord clamping and immediate skin to skin. I loved that we were able to leave the birth center just five short hours after giving birth to drive home to our patiently waiting daughters and my parents. The whole experience was exactly as I had hoped it would be!