If there was one word to describe Deacon’s birth it would be LOVE. We consciously called this sweet boy into our family and throughout my pregnancy I felt an immense amount of LOVE and peace. I didn’t allow the fear of complications and the unknown that existed during my pregnancy with Eloise to creep in this time. At 15 weeks, we decided that we would switch our care from our beloved midwife to Dr. Fischbein. I had a hunch that while unlikely, this baby could be breech like his sister. I also felt so secure having Dr. Fischbein at Eloise’s birth that I wanted that the second time around. My pregnancy went smoothly aside from a lot more aches and pains. At around 27 weeks, it was confirmed that this baby was breech. I started doing exercises to encourage him head down, but also felt confident that I could deliver him no matter what, so didn’t stress about it the way I did the first time.
At around 31 weeks, I started to have pretty regular and intense contractions. I really felt that there was no way I would make it to the end of my pregnancy with my body doing this much work already. By 34-35 weeks, my fluid was very low and Dr. Fischbein started extra monitoring. If I could just make it to 36 weeks, I could still deliver my breech baby at home, so that was the goal. Just before 36 weeks my closest friends held a beautiful blessing for our baby boy and me at our home. They showered us with LOVE, support and encouragement. I felt lifted and ready for this baby boy when he was ready to come.
I made it to 36 weeks, but my fluid was incredibly low. Dr. Fischbein started getting concerned that we may need to make a back up plan and induce if my fluid didn’t go up or the baby didn’t come on his own. He also assured me that we would do everything we could to continue on without intervention. Contractions continued to be regular and I was sure that it wouldn’t be much longer until labor started. A couple days of rest and hydration and my fluid was still very low but back to a safe level. I continued non-stress tests twice a week until we made it to 40 weeks! I really couldn’t believe it considering all that my body was doing. I had already been 5 cm dilated for a week at this point. Each day after his Oct. 28thdue date I was sure it would be the day. We canceled Halloween plans and parked both cars on the street to ensure we’d have parking spots for the birth team that busy night. We walked from house to house with all our neighbors commenting on how this could be the night. In hindsight, I am glad we had that Halloween to enjoy with Eloise and very glad that our baby wasn’t born that night (it was the only night I really didn’t want him to come!).
Thank goodness my mom was in town during this time and was able to help me get rest by watching Eloise. I felt so prepared for this birth and anxious for it to come. Then, 5 days past his due date on November 2nd, 2018. I woke up with contractions as usual. Ray and I planned to go see the new Queen movie later that day, but I suggested we go that morning. When do we ever get to do that and you never know, I could be in labor later! During the movie, I was having very consistent contractions- at least every 5 minutes. Considering I had been having contractions for weeks, these didn’t feel particularly intense; however, they were very consistent and I did notice a lot of pressure that I had never experienced with Eloise. As we listened to the story and music of Queen, the contractions continued. At this point, we still hadn’t decided 100 percent on the baby’s name. I loved the name Deacon but knew that Ray wasn’t sold. I kept hoping for some kind of sign that Deacon was his name. Then, there it was. The bass player’s name was John Deacon. They called him Deacon or Deaky for short. We certainly weren’t naming the baby after Queen’s bass player, but left feeling like this baby’s name was indeed Deacon.
When we got home, it was naptime for Eloise and Ray thought he should head up to the office and get some work done. Grammy went home and I tried to get Eloise down for a nap, but she was fighting it hard and these contractions kept coming. I decided to give up on the nap and texted Dr. Fischbein to give him a heads up that I’d been having consistent contractions for at least a couple hours now. This had been happening so often that I really didn’t think this could be it. He called me a few minutes later and said that he thought he should stop by and check me. He was about an hour away. He said to have Ray start filling the tub, so I called Ray home and my mom back over. Eloise was running around like crazy, perhaps sensing that her little brother was on his way. I thought I may want her to stick around for the birth, but decided that she should go with Grammy for a little bit while we figured out what was going on…maybe she could come back later. At around 5pm, Dr. Fischbein and his team arrived and by 5:30 my mom and Eloise left. Contractions were 3 minutes apart at this point, but in my mind they still weren’t intense enough and I thought they might just go away. The midwife assured me that this was it and that I was in active labor. I started to feel excited and also a little nervous about what was to come. Things started to intensify really quickly and suddenly I wanted to get in the tub, but it wasn’t full. I moved and breathed through contractions waiting for the tub to fill. It was now about 7pm and Dr. Fischbein wanted to check me before I got into the tub to make sure the water wouldn’t slow things down. I was at 8-9cm. This baby was coming soon! I got in the tub for a few minutes. Ray brought me some bone broth to sip and the intensity became so strong that I started feeling like I couldn’t do it. All the thoughts I had felt before during Eloise’s birth crept into my mind, “why am I doing this to myself? I can’t go on any longer!” I knew I must be getting close, yet there was still so much hard work ahead. Suddenly, the water felt so hot and I wanted to get out of the tub. I made my way to our bed and worked through a few more contractions. I could tell it was time to push, but mentally wasn’t quite ready. After a few more contractions, I mustered up the strength to start pushing. I had a bunch of pillows propped up and started to push on my knees. I took one practice push then gave it everything I had. Pushing is SO hard, but this time it was going so much faster than with Eloise. Quickly, Dr. Fischbein could see the baby’s butt and encouraged me to keep pushing with contractions. Just a couple more pushes and he was out. I pushed for about 15 minutes as opposed to 2.5 hours with Eloise.
Deacon was quiet and calm when he entered the world and he brought that energy to the room. He cried but only a little. I asked if he was OK. I pulled him up through my legs. Beth (our midwife) brought a towel for Deacon and Dr. Fischbein checked on me. I found my way to lie down on the bed and put him to my chest. He nursed right away and was so calm and cuddly. He had a fair amount of cute blonde hair and was so sweet and handsome. I remember not wanting to set him down, as he seemed to just melt in my arms. He was perfect.
I was in total awe of how much quicker and easier (although still SO hard) his delivery was than his sister’s. I felt calm and proud. I just birthed breech baby #2! Then, it was time to push out the placenta. Only it wasn’t coming as it should. Things suddenly went from beautiful to painful as Dr. Fischbein had to stick his arm up inside me to get the placenta and prevent me from hemorrhaging. It’s funny how your mind has away of forgetting the bad. I really can’t remember the pain anymore, but I know that there was a lot of it. I remember begging the team to just take me to the hospital as if that would somehow solve the problem. I remember Dr. Fischbein feeling really terrible that he had to put me through this and I remember feeling defeated after all that I accomplished. Thankfully, it wasn’t long before that part was over and they tucked me back into bed with my sweet baby boy. I had lost a fair amount of blood and was afraid of fainting like I did the first time around so I asked for an IV right off the bat. In hindsight, that was a scary situation, but in the moment I felt secure and confident that while painful, my team knew exactly what to do.
Deacon was born at 8:33 PM and the birth team left around 11pm. I should have slept but my adrenalin was going and I couldn’t stop starring at that perfect, sweet baby. The next morning we introduced Deacon Hayes Powell to his big sister and Grammy. Eloise was slightly shy and unsure as she entered the room with the little card she had made for her new brother. In that moment she looked so big. She held her brother and giggled. My heart exploded. She and Grammy also made cupcakes for Deacon’s birthday and we later sang “Happy Birthday” to our new addition.
Dr. Fischbein and his team returned later that day to check on me. As with my first birth, I felt that I had a VIP birth experience. It was beautiful. I was supported by all around me, loved and respected. Deacon entered the world surrounded by LOVE and in return, his sweet, calm, happy spirit spreads so much LOVE to our family and everyone he meets.