The Birth of Ryann

February 6, 2018

Something that’s good to do, but not many people do, is write out their birth story soon after the birth of a baby. This not only helps you remember bits and pieces of your birth experience, but it allows you to reflect on your unique story for years to come. For the first time ever, I received a written birth story from both Adrianna and Jay on how their home birth went. Below is their story along with their birth video and several photographs taken that morning.

Adrianna’s Story

41+3, we had an apt with our Midwife Traci Monday morning because we went over 41 weeks. We did a non stress test and Ryann’s heart looked beautiful on the monitor. She wanted to do a cervical check to see how things were going so we could make a plan to ensure she was born that week. At first I didn’t want to know the number incase I wasn’t dilating. I didn’t want it messing with my head. But while doing it she said are you sure you don’t want to know? It’s a good number! I agreed at that point. She said a 4! Almost a 5! I was so relieved. I decided to let her do a membrane sweep. She did a very mild one, Ryann’s head was still pretty high so she didn’t think it was very effective. In the end we decided to make another apt for the next morning to do another sweep if nothing happened that night. The last thing I wanted was to get to 42weeks and have to go to the hospital.

   We got home, Amanda and my mom took Hudson and Dean out to play for a few hours so  Jay and I had time to relax and watch a funny movie. I started having mild contractions later that afternoon. I started timing them, 5-6min apart. We had a dance party with the boys when they got home, Jay even taught me how to do the merengue! We decided to go to bed around 10pm to rest up. I woke up around midnight and couldn’t sleep through the contractions anymore. Jay was sleeping with Hudson so I texted to wake him up..but he didn’t wake up for almost an hour! I finally decided to go wake him up around 1am. We put the tarp down and Jay blew up the birth pool. Once everything was set up I told him we should try to lay down for a bit to see if I could rest some more. That didn’t last long. The contractions started picking up in intensity and were 2-3 min apart. It was around 3am at this point. All of a sudden we heard someone knock on what we thought was the front door. Jay jumped up and looked out every window in the house. Couldn’t see anyone. For the next 20 min he was pacing around the house and checking to make sure the gun was accessible. I finally convinced him to calm down because I needed him at this point. Jay sat on a stool and I knelt down in front of him holding onto him. This was the first time I cried because of the pain. He reassured me I was doing great and that our baby was coming!
    At 3:40am we texted Lawren our photographer and Traci that things were starting to progress. At 4:22am we called Traci because she hadn’t woken up to the text. She got ready and left to come over. I was then at a point where I couldn’t move around too much. Jay did a few hip squeezes during the next couple of contractions. It helped but then nothing was feeling good so I asked him to stop. There was a strange bulging pressure feeling with each contraction. I made sure to stay standing over the tarp we had open as big as possible incase my water broke, didn’t want to deal with that mess!  I needed to go pee so made my way to the bathroom and right as I began to squat onto the toilet my water broke (the reason for the pressure) Perfect timing! No mess! But it was really startling when it came out! We sent a picture to Traci (4:55am) so she could check for any signs of meconium. The water was clear! Once my water broke I told Jay “things are about to get real”…..and they did! Shortly after I told Jay to fill the pool. My mom started filling pots of hot water to help the hose fill up faster. Once there was enough water I got in. The water ended up being too hot so they had to cool it down before I could really get into the water. At this point I have no concept of time. I’m just trying to breath through each contraction because I couldn’t think or do anything else.  I stayed on my knees leaning over the edge of the pool for the rest of the labor. Traci and Lawren showed up around the same time, just after 5am, I was oblivious to anyone coming in and out. The MW assistant arrived as well. The contractions were so intense I felt exhausted in between them, I would try to relax my body and arms as much as possible during those brief moments in between contractions. I tried my best to breath through each one, keeping my face as relaxed as possible. Eventually I felt like I was going to throw up. Jay sat in front of me with a bowl the entire time not leaving my side. Dry heaving is the worst! There was nothing in my stomach to come up but the little sips of water I was drinking. I knew it was helpful to move the baby down though. That was the only thing keeping me going because each time made the contraction longer and harder. Traci asked what time Hudson usually wakes up. Jay told her around 6:30. I asked what time it was and it was just before 6:30, I was worried he was going to wake up when I was at my worst. I remember him coming in and out of the room. He never said anything but I do remember him being there then leaving when he had seen enough. Our dog Dallas walked in and out of the room too. I felt surrounded by people who cared about me. My back hurt. But not because the baby was in a bad position. It was more muscle pain from leaning over the pool tensing up during each contraction. Later Jay said he could see my back muscles spasming during contractions.  I decided to reach down to see if I could feel her head, she still seemed high to me. I told Traci she still seemed high a few times. She suggested I change positions. I told her I couldn’t move. It even hurt between contractions. She said she’d like me to turn over belly up to listen for the baby and check to see where she was. I told her no because it hurt too much to move. She left me alone for a few more contractions then suggested it again. After the next contraction I rolled over. She listened for the heart beat, baby still sounded good. She checked me and said there was no cervix left and the baby was low! She said I could push any time if I felt like it. I almost didn’t believe her. I told her I couldn’t stay like that and quickly flipped back over. It seemed like maybe 2 contractions later and I yelled out because her head suddenly dropped and was right there! I said it’s happening too fast! I put my hand down to slow her down. I felt like I was going to rip like crazy with all of the sudden pressure and my body trying to push her out without any control. I could feel her hair and squishy head. It was a crazy feeling. Again Traci told me I could push whenever I felt like it. I didn’t even have a choice. My body took over. I feel like this is when the pain stopped and time slowed down. I lifted my right leg so I wasn’t on both knees anymore. I used my fingers to slowly push my skin back to stretch it a little at a time. I was breathing and calm, not really feeling a contraction for what felt like a long time, but I’m sure it wasn’t for everyone watching. Soon her head came out. Traci felt to make sure the cord wasn’t wrapped around her neck, then moved her hand away. What felt like a second later her body came out into the water and I lifted my baby girl up and onto my chest. How did that happen?! I didn’t even push, my body just took over and did it all. She had just been born, in our home, surrounded by love, delivered by her mommy. It was beautiful, and it was all over. I looked at her, then at Jay and Hudson who were right there next to the pool. So much love and happiness. I couldn’t believe I had done it! The most amazing experience and I felt great! She was a big girl! And still had so much vernix on her skin. There were even chunks floating in the water. We waited until her cord stopped pulsing. Then Traci clamped it and Jay cut the cord. I think Jay held the baby at this point. Traci asked me to stand up when I could and squat over a large bowl to deliver the placenta. I pushed once and it came right out. I was freezing, shivering a lot. They helped me out of the pool and I climbed into bed to warm up. Traci checked for tares, no stitches needed! Then she evaluated Ryann, of course she was perfect. 9.8 pounds and 21 1/4 inches long! We couldn’t believe how big she was! Ryann and I then got into a nice warm herbal bath, we relaxed, she loved the warm water. Then we got out and laid in bed. She nursed while Traci and Jay cleaned up and emptied the pool. Soon everyone was gone and it was just us. As long as we waited for her it was all over so fast. I couldn’t have asked for anything better!

Jay’s Story

My last text to Josh was at 10:48. I layed there another 30 or 40 minutes tossing and turning. It felt like I had just closed my eyes when Adrianna woke up. I looked at my phone and it was 1:30. She said her contractions were enough to keep her up and that we should go ahead and set up the pool.
We laid down the clear plastic tarp on the floor in the bedroom and then began to blow up the pool. The pump was so loud we thought for sure we would wake everyone up but they all stayed asleep. Once we were done with that we decided to lay back down. Around 3:03 am there was a very audible knock on the door. Knock knock knock knock. Fairly rapid all together. I turned to Adrianna and asked if she had called the midwife or photographer to come over and she said she hadn’t even talked to them at all yet. I got up and checked the front door and then the back. No one was there. I spent the next 30 minutes pacing the house checking the doors and looking out the window. I was creeped out but also in full defense of my home mode. No sign of anyone and no more noises. House is dark and quiet.

Around 3:30 Adrianna‘s contractions have increased and become quiet frequent. She’s in a lot of pain and is moving around the room trying to find the right position that is the most comfortable. In the 4 o’clock hour contractions are about 2 minutes apart and average about 50 seconds. I’m now trying to keep her updated on how long she has left on each contraction. Trying my best to motivate through the pain. We are texting the photographer and the midwife updates. Around 4:15 we call the midwife and tell her it’s go time.

Around 4:30 adrianna attempts to go to the bathroom and her water breaks into the toilet. It landed perfect in the toilet. No crazy mess on the floor like you hear the stories about. Call midwife… midwife is excited. Adrianna says…”it’s about to get serious”.

I begin to fill the pool around 4:40. Hose connected to the shower…wait it doesn’t fit lol. Have to connect to the sink. A bathroom sink to fill a rubber pool meant to have a baby in. Hot water on blast taking forever. Maria is now awake ask her to start helping me with hot water because the sink is now done with warm water. She begins to boil some water.

Around 5 am the tub is getting full enough for her to get in. Water is too hot Of course. Start filling cold water in tub tell Maria to cut off the hot water need cold only. Photographer shows up followed by midwife seconds later. Adrianna is able to get into the water now.
Contractions are intense and we aren’t tracking anymore. Midwife sets up all of her equipment the room is silent except Christian music playing softly on pandora from her phone on the bed post.

It’s around 5:30 and Amanda and dean are now awake and have popped to check in. Contractions still intense. I have now turned into hair and throw up bowl holder. I’m playing my part. The woman is crazy tough is all I’m thinking.

Around 6:30 midwife asks if Adrianna can feel the head adrianna says no and seems distraught about it. The tone of her voice says I’m going through all of this and nothing is happening. She’s asking for the midwife to give ideas to help get Ryann out. Baby and mom are healthy mom is just over it. She’s doing amazing though.

Probably 6:50 adrianna has changed spots in the pool. Midwife checks and says she can feel head and no cervix it’s going beautiful and baby is coming soon. At this point adrianna has only moaned in pain has not screamed like the movies show.

    6:55 probably is the only scream I hear the whole time. A big contraction and Adrianna feels her coming and screams and says it’s too soon!! Next contraction a minute or two later out she comes. With one crazy move adrianna rotates her body and pulls her own baby up out of the water. 6:57 Ryann Amanda Cox breathes her first breath of air.

Everyone is in the room. Her mom, her sister, our nephew, our son and even the dog. We all watch in amazement and what just happened. I’m excited my daughter is here but it’s almost over powered by the craziness I just watched. Baby is beautiful and adrianna is glowing and I’m like how the crap did she go through that and look so good. Mom and baby get out of the pool and take an herbal bath. Basically they sit in a tub of tea. Baby and mom are in bed probably about 8-8:30 here. Time to drain the pool. Pump doesn’t work. So I find a 5 gallon bucket and the midwife had a bowl and we get to emptying the red water from the pool. Just added to the adventure.

Overall it was an amazing experience and I would recommend it for anyone. Adrianna was in active labor for about 4 hours and delivered her own baby and was in her bed within an hour with her baby.