surprised momMost of my labor and delivery were fairly standard and not very funny for outsiders who don’t care about the details of birth, BUT…I was that person who slipped and fell in her own amniotic fluid on the floor. Just like in the movies. There was also a period of a few hours where I was asked to sit around tweaking my own nipples. Yeah, we’re going there. I can’t be the only one who had to do that…can I?

I woke up at 3AM feeling like I was about to pee myself, so I ran into the bathroom, heard a POP, and proceeded to release a flood of fluid onto the floor. I told my husband that my water had broken, and his response was “Well, it’s too late to do anything now, so come back to bed.” This response actually made sense to me at the time, so I crawled back into bed. As soon as I laid down, I felt another gush coming, so I got up and ran into the bathroom (which now had a thick layer of amniotic fluid covering the floor), where I slid, flew gracefully into the air, and landed ungracefully on my back. That was enough to get my husband out of bed and we both decided to slow down, clean up a bit, and maybe start thinking a little more rationally.

We eventually called the midwife and went back to bed. Now, most of you probably know that once your water breaks, you are officially on the clock. The baby has to come within a certain window or it’s a c-section for you. I was using midwives at an out of hospital birth center, so we were all very dedicated to getting those contractions going and avoiding the c-section. There are some natural ways to start contractions that many people already know–taking a walk, going up and down stairs, taking a hot shower–but there was one that I didn’t really know about until I was asked to start doing it…nipple stimulation.

This basically means that you rub/tweak/whatever your own nipples non-stop all day long. Maybe other women are able to turn this into sexy times with their partners, but the most I could muster was sitting on a yoga ball and playing with my nipples while trying to hold a conversation with my husband where we both pretended I wasn’t twisting my nipples. Needless to say, it was awkward. But oh my god did it work. Contractions came strong and fast, and I was asked to repeat this maneuver later in labor to get to transition. I am pregnant again, and the midwife has noted in my file that I am “very responsive to nipple stimulation” in case the need for nipple stimulation arises again…yay?

The rest of the labor was fast, painful, and I’m assuming fairly standard. I’m hoping that for this next baby, since I’m a birthing pro now and all, I won’t make any rookie mistakes like falling into any of my own bodily fluids.

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