Matthan Paul Coursey

Matthan arrived on Wednesday, January 14th at 3:45 pm, weighing 8 pounds, 6 ounces and 21 inches long. Here's how it all happened...

Matthan Paul's Birthstory

I thought I was going to join the small club of women who actually happened to go into labor naturally and give birth on their baby's due date. On Monday afternoon I started having what I knew for sure to be minor contractions. They would come every 6-10 minutes or so, and last anywhere from 60-90 seconds. They gradually became more intense as the day went on, so I thought, "This is it!" With Selah I never felt any contractions whatsoever, and was already 5 cm dilated when my midwife called me in nine days post due date. So I just knew that if I was having contractions this was the real deal. I took a shower, made sure every bag was packed, gave my parents a "heads up" call, and went to bed around 10pm. Well, I was WRONG! I wasn't in bed thirty minutes and the contractions completely subsided. Come Tuesday morning I was STILL PREGNANT, and disappointed.

We had an appointment with my midwife scheduled for Wednesday morning and were fairly certain that if things were progressing we would try some natural ways to help my labor along, so my mom went ahead and drove down Tuesday evening to stay at the house with Selah.

On Wednesday morning we said a tearful goodbye to Selah ( it's a strange, bittersweet feeling to leave one child to have another) and headed to Dallas. I remember reading and hearing from friends throughout my pregnancy that every labor is different, and to not expect this labor to be a repeat of my first. Well, strangely enough, things this time around played out very much like they did with Selah. Once we got to the birth center Carol, another midwife, checked me and I was dilated nearly 5 cm. We decided to strip my membranes and take a walk around the park next door to try and get things going while waiting for my midwife, Cherie, who was on her way. After about an hour and a half of walking contractions, we went back inside to talk with Cherie and see how much I had progressed. I began having very regular contractions while walking, but they were still pretty mild. Cherie checked me and I was now at 6 cm.

At about 1pm we made the decision to go ahead and break my water, and afterwards I immediately felt much more pressure. Terry moved all of our things into the birthing room while I called my best friend and doula, Kippy, who headed to the birth center. I really wanted to try laboring in the whirlpool tub because I've read a lot about the advantages of using warm water to help ease the pain, but I had also heard it could really speed up labor so I decided to wait for Kippy to get there.

When Kippy arrived around 2pm we decided to take one more quick walk around the park and then headed back inside to get in the tub. The warm water felt amazing! I lounged back and chatted with Terry and Kippy, pausing when I needed to concentrate on breathing through a contraction. After I had been in the tub for about an hour my birth assistant, Debbie, was concerned that I wasn't progressing because of the talking and laughing going on and decided that maybe I needed to be checked to see what was going on. Cherie climbed in the tub with me, and said to everyone's surprise that I was already completely dilated to 10 cm! I was shocked at how well laboring in the water masked the pain, so much so that I wasn't even feeling any urge to push!

I had really wanted to deliver in the tub, but when my water was broken there was a small amount of meconium in the fluid, which made waterbirth not an option because Cherie would need to aspirate the baby's lungs right when the head was delivered. Everyone helped me out of the tub, and the moment I stood up I felt the most intense pressure ever. I squatted to push a few times and then got in bed.

Terry was right on the bed with me helping me hold my legs back as I pushed and telling me what a great job I was doing. Kippy was right at my feet, encouraging me with each push and helping me hang in there by telling me when she could see his head. Cherie did an amazing job of letting me push when I wanted to, while at the same time giving me direction when she could tell wearing out and needed it. At one point everyone was laughing and smiling around me, and Kippy said his head was out and he opened his eyes and was looking around. A short 15-20 minutes of pushing and Matthan entered the world, completely perfect from head to toe! What an amazing blessing it is that God allows us as mothers to help usher a new life into the world!!


the Provident Woman said...

That is one beautiful baby.