Raphael’s Birth Story

I never could have imagine how painful contractions can be! Getting from 8 to 10 cm was the worst!! Nobody told me that I shouldn’t bear down until I was FULLY dilated – THAT was literally the worst part! I still can’t believe I did it without epidural or any other pain medication. But let me start from the beginning…

The evening before our son was born Mark and I watched “Geostorm” and I said to Mark: “I have a feeling he’ll come on Friday!” In this night I started having regular contractions about 2-5 minutes apart. I noticed immediately that the contractions were stronger than before. About 1.5 hours later I found some blood spotting in my underwear. Even though my contractions weren’t super strong at that time I wanted to go to the hospital because of the bleeding. So I woke up Mark and we went directly to the hospital to make sure that everything was OK. After arriving there the nurse put me on the fetal monitor and the doctor checked how far along I was and if I might be already in active labor. I was still super relaxed at that time and I remember exactly that Mark said to me: “I’m sure it’s still too early. Look at you, you are still laughing, jumping around and making jokes!” We even had the time to send our families some pictures.

The heart rate of our baby was normal and also was the bleeding since my cervix was starting to dilate more and more. At that time (around 3 AM) I was 3 cm dilated: They told me to walk the hall and let the doctor check on me again in 2 h – to see if there will be any progress or it was just a false alarm. 2 h later I was 4 cm dilated – so I wasn’t in active labor yet. They gave me 2 options.

  1. They could check me into the hospital and check on me again in 2-3 h but if they won’t see any progress they would want to induce or help active labor to begin unnaturally.
  2. We could go home, try to get some rest and come back when the contractions are REALLY painful. “When they take your breathe away, for about 1 h!” – that were the words of the nurse!

I decided to go home since I can still handle the pain even though they were more intense. At home I tried to get a little bit of sleep which wasn’t possible. With every contractions I felt the urge to move around and after 1 h it started to get really uncomfortable. Fortunately, Mark was able to sleep for 3 hours.

Around 9 AM my contractions were a lot worse. I kept walking around in our apartment. Mark decided to prepare a warm bath for me. I was bathing for maybe 10 minutes when my contractions got even worse…
I said to Mark: “It’s really uncomfortable and painful (I thought so at the time!!), I think we really need to go to the hospital NOW!” So we packed our stuff again and drove back to the hospital. When they checked me I was only 4.5 cm dilated. I really couldn’t believe it. I though it must have been at least 6 cm. And again, they told me to walk around and they’ll check me again in 2 h.

At around 12 PM I was 5 cm dilated and we could FINALLY check into a room. By that time with every contractions it got worse. I had the worst back labor pain – I tried to do some squads, circle my hips, use the ball to release the pain from my back. But it was really not easy to handle. After we got into our room we were introduced to our nurse Angie and they explained to me how to get an epidural but since I didn’t want to have one until it’s really necessary I didn’t really pay attention to what she was saying. Even though my contractions kept getting stronger and stronger I felt like I can still handle the pain. Since I had really bad back pain I tried the hydro shower – And it felt really good on my back. I got out of the shower because I thought that my water broke and after checking my dilation, I got from 6 cm to about 8 cm. The pain was already so strong that I couldn’t imagine that it could even get worse BUT it ACTUALLY DID! With every contractions I felt the urge to push through each contractions which I shouldn’t until I was FULLY DILATED! Mark and Angie tried to breathe with me through every contractions. Mark was there the entire time, he held my hands and reminded me to breathe and to stymy focused. Between every contractions he gave me water and helped me relax. I’m so grateful for his support and his strength! I couldn’t imagine going through labor without him. Even though I couldn’t respond at all I can felt his love and his support! I remember how Angie said to Mark: “You are doing such a good Job that you don’t even need us!!”
With every contractions I felt like it was tearing me up and I just couldn’t do anything about it! I can remember exactly what Angie said: ” Breathe through the contraction. DON’T bear down! It’s not time yet!! You ARE under control! Find a fix point and concentrate on breathing through the contraction!!” – “You are almost there” And with every contractions that came I hoped it’ll be the last. It took around 1.5 h until I was fully dilated! During that time it felt like the nurse checked my dilation a miiiillion times!!

At around 9 cm they broke my water to get things going faster and by the time they said: “You are 10 cm dilated” I felt so relieved: “FINALLY!!! I can push!” I remember exactly how Mark looked down and then looked at me and said: ” Mini, I can see his hair!!” And then everything went so unbelievably fast! I didn’t realize anything what was happening around me! It was so unreal! I pressed 6 times and Raphael was there! This last few minutes was SO emotional – the pain was so sharp and intense but I was so relieve that I finally could actively push my baby out and as soon as I held him in my arms the pain was forgotten! He was perfect. He looked at me with his big blue eyes and I could feel how happy tears were running down my face and I never felt more love than anytime before in my life. It is really the most beautiful feeling on earth holding your own child in your arms! It was an absolutely unique breathtaking and unforgettable moment for Mark and me.





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