14 October 2015

Our first (and only) internationally born child

Moving to Korea was an adventure.  We had to move early because I ended up pregnant earlier than we had been planning.  Being due just a few days before my husband's report date, we had to move our moving up by 2 months at least.  Which we did.  We got to Korea on August 17th. 

I was 33 weeks pregnant and unsure about where I'd end up delivering.  I started prenatal care with the military hospital up at Yongson and to be honest I was pretty surprised at the care there.  It wasn't as bad as I was expecting considering the stories.  They are obviously heading in the right direction as far as care.

I still was not okay giving birth in a hospital.  We found out that I couldn't stay at lodging up at Yongson for half price unless I gave birth at 121 and I was not comfortable with the idea of driving anywhere while in labor at all so around 36 weeks we started looking into or homebirth options.  I was still not comfortable with the idea of unassisted birth although Michael and I did put a lot of discussion into it.  I just preferred the idea of having someone there to assist for those "just in cases."

So we contacted a homebirth midwife.  She was completely hands off in some ways, and hands on in ways I wasn't expecting.  But, all in all I'm glad we called her.  She was really only there for a short part of my birth, but I LOVED her assistant Jasmine.

So, my birth story:

On October 10, 2015, around 10am I had some bloody show.  I have a history of short labors so we called the midwife and let her know.  She sent her husband and assistant out because she was teaching a class.  My labor was very slow to start.  Early labor lasted a very long time.  All day in fact.  Contractions were slow to establish, but they were pretty intense when they were showing up.  It wasn't until around 5pm, after doing some sprints around the building for about half an hour, that my contractions finally picked up.  That's when I'd say active labor started.  The birth pool was set up, and I swayed and moved, and walked around, and leaned, during contractions.  It was very different from my other labors in that I felt the need to move between contractions during this one.  I was also able to breathe, instead of moan through them for the most part for the first part of active labor.

I was in and out of the birth tub a few times, until I think it was closer (to be honest at this point I was fairly exhausted so details are pretty fuzzy)  Kids were in and out of the room, Michael was in and our of the room, and at some point I just lost track of who was there.  Jasmine was awesome at helping me relax during and between contractions.  We had to live and press in on my stomach to get Isaac to engage and drop down because of how relaxed my muscles are.  I do remember hoping that I'd still give birth on the 10th but it was looking less likely.  The contractions kept coming and I was slightly excited when my thoughts turned irrational (thinking drugs would be nice) because I knew he'd be here soon.  At some point Rosa showed up....but I honestly don't remember when.

And then like always the fact that I was pushing kind of snuck up on me and surprised me.  Wasn't as easy as Katara, Isaac's water wasn't breaking while I was pushing and I think that scared me, although I'm not sure why.  Obviously it made pushing harder, but I think it would have been cool if he'd been born in caul but I kind of freaked out at the fact that it wasn't breaking.  At that point I know there was a flurry of activity, and Rosa helped guide him out as I pushed.  He came out all in one push though, head, body and everything.

And he was born. 

Isaac Lee came on October 11, 2015 at 12:49am weighing 8lbs 1oz and 21" long.  He came out crying, and with a short cord like his sister Willow.