You found the hidden text! Did you know... One single drop of a mother's colostrum has nearly 1 million white blood cells in it! True amazing power we hold as human mothers to heal. "Every Drop Counts!" - Summer

3 yo Tevan Kai in 2005

3 yr old Tevan Kai in 2005

It was 4 a.m. in the morning on Wednesday July 17, 2002, and I woke up thinking I had wet the bed! I woke up Casey and asked him to smell the bed to see if it was pee or amniotic fluid. After smelling the soaked bed, he reassured me that it was indeed odorless and therefore was the spontaneous breaking of my bag of waters.

We were so excited! Since my water broke we knew to check and see if it was clear and odorless. And it was. We also knew the hospital would start the “clock” allowing me only 24 hours to labor and birth our baby. We didn’t want to be on “their clock”, we wanted to follow our baby’s clock. So we stayed at home until we felt ready to go to the hospital.

We called our Bradley Instructors and told them about what had happened. I remember them asking me if I was having any contractions and I told them no but I am having some menstrual cramps. They then said those were indeed contractions and that’s what they feel like. They told me to rest for a while and then see what my contractions are doing and to call later.

The sun was coming up and we decided to pack our things and go downstairs to have some breakfast. My contractions were about 10 minutes apart and only lasting 20-30 seconds and were feeling like very mild menstrual cramps. We knew we wanted to stay at home as long as possible while we were still in the early stages of first stage labor.

Once our bags were packed and in the car, we decided to relax and play some board games while we waited. So we played a little Mancala, Scrabble and an old favorite, Sorry. Of course we would be interrupted every so often with a contraction and Casey would diligently grab his notebook and take note of the exact time it began.

After a while we decided to take a short walk down the block to help speed up the labor process by shifting the baby further down into the pelvis. It was around 8 am, and some neighbors probably thought we looked pretty silly when I paused, for a contraction, and leaned on Casey. They were still only 8 to 10 minutes apart although they were increasing in intensity and length. After our walk, we came back inside; after all it was 105 degrees that day! I decided to take a shower and that helped me to relax and feel better. We also went outside onto our deck and talked about our plans for our new home. We really just tried to keep ourselves busy during this time of early labor.

After many hours of this, talks with our Bradley Instructors, our parents and each other, we decided to make our way to the hospital. Shawnee Mission Medical Center is only about 10 minutes away from our house and in that trip I had a few contractions. One was in the car. One was on my birthing ball in the parking lot. Somebody had to carry the ball inside, why not make it useful too? One was in the reception area, on the ball. Man was I glad that ball was there!

Then we got to our birthing room and it was 12 in the afternoon. So by this point we had been in labor a mere 8 hours and it was still early labor and very manageable. They had our birth plan lying out on the table next to them ready for reference. We had decided earlier to have a Heparin lock and agreed to do an initial 20 minute strip(EFM) with a vaginal exam. So they did a hep-lock, checked me and guess what they found? They said “I was not quite dilated to a 1 yet”. Never fear, with all of our Bradley knowledge we knew what to do with positioning and movement and knew that numbers don’t tell you anything about when the baby is coming. As women, each of our bodies is different and the baby creates a labor that is right for them.

I was hooked up to the EFM machine and once 20 minutes was up, Casey called for the nurse. He politely asked if Summer could be un-strapped from the EFM since both mom and baby were ok? It was alright and I was un-strapped. Great and off we went to do our labor upright!

We walked up and down the halls, sat in the shower, bounced on the birth ball, hovered in chairs and over them, laid on the floor (my favorite) and just kept my laboring body moving. Well, somewhere around 3pm I started going through transition. My body started uncontrollably shaking and quivering. I was so hot and then so quickly cold. Casey and my mom were both by my side and I couldn’t have done it without his totally focused coaching and my mom being his assistant. They had my blankets on, my blankets off, cool cloths, drinks of water, ice, massage, light touching, eye contact, reassuring words and anything you could name they did. It was wonderful.

During transition I remember it felt like my needs changed from second to second and thankfully they were met without hesitation. I also threw up the crackers and snack I had eaten a few hours back. No big deal. My body knew what it needed when it was hungry and it knew what it didn’t need when I threw up.

My transition lasted about 3 hours which is longer than average. Now that my transition was over, it was “gettin busy time”. I was feeling a very strong urge to push. I remember the nurse telling me not to push yet and I tried to listen to her instructions, but my body wasn’t hearing her. I said, “Ok, I won’t push yet”, but my body was involuntarily pushing anyway. Sometimes your body knows better than anyone when it’s time to push.

Pushing felt great! I pushed in the sitting and supported squat position. I finally got to actively do something to get this baby out. I ended up pushing for 40 minutes and my son was born. My placenta came slithering out right away with the next contraction without any pushing.

We were so happy. We had worked so long and hard for this “Birth Day” and it was so well worth it. We felt so empowered by the birth of our 7lb 5oz baby boy! And he was so alert and loved both of us so much! I still remember one of the first things I said, only 1 minute after the birth. Casey asked how I felt and I told him, “I feel great! The labor and birth was so amazing. I want to do it again. Let’s do it again!”