"Having a baby in Alaska was quite an adventure. I learned first hand that labor will happen when it happens and that my body knew just what to do." - Meggan
Today’s birth story is about Meggan’s 5th birth(Maggie) which took place in Juneau, Alaska, where she had to travel to give birth!
Meggan: I gave birth to my 5th child when we lived in Alaska. The small island we lived on did not deliver babies at the local hospital so 2.5 weeks before my due date I flew to Juneau and awaited my daughters arrival in a hotel room. My husband had recently started a new job so had very little time off. He also needed to return home after 5 days to take care of our other 4 kids. Because my previous babies had been 1 week, 2 weeks, and 3 weeks early I assumed I would not have much of a wait after I arrived in Juneau. My sweet little girl had other plans though.
My husband and I had 5 days to do everything we could to encourage labor. We walked. And walked. And walked. Averaging about 12 miles a day. We ate spicy food. We had sex. I did jumping jacks. I had my membranes stripped twice (ouch!). Labor eluded me and my husband flew home and I stayed behind hoping the baby would come soon.
I spent the next week and a half binge watching Netflix and walking. Two days before my daughters due date I was so desperate to have her and head home that just before I went to bed that night I took a tablespoon of caster oil. Never again!! It tasted like stinky feet and made me so sick. I spent the next few hours watching tv shows and running to the bathroom. Around 4:30 am my water broke. I was alone in a hotel room, in November, in Alaska, and needed to get to the hospital fast. Insurance required me to check out of the hotel before checking in to the hospital so I packed what wasn't already packed in my bags and called down to the desk to request a ride from the hotel shuttle.
At that point I could tell I was in active labor. I took my suitcases down to the main level, checked out of the hotel mid-contraction, and boarded the hotel shuttle with the very young male driver. He looked 16 but I'm sure he was 21, right? As he drove toward the hospital I called to let them know I was coming. After I got off the phone I looked at the driver and said "Have you ever delivered a baby?" The blood drained from his face. I was mostly kidding but he didn't find it funny. Despite the icy roads we arrived safely at the hospital. The poor shuttle driver carried my bags through the doors of the emergency room and as soon as a nurse appeared he dropped them and high tailed it out of there.
I scurried to the elevator with the ER triage nurse following behind me carrying my bags. When we reached labor and delivery a different nurse showed me to my room. I waddled as quickly as I could toward the bed while taking off my bottoms. The nurse asked me if she could weigh me but I knew there wasn't time. I had just enough time to lay on the bed, push twice, and see my beautiful baby slide right out. The nurse handed her to me and we both smiled at what a good job I'd done. The doctor arrived 20 minutes later. I had already enjoyed skin to skin contact with my sweet Maggie and was organizing my flight home for the next afternoon.
Having a baby in Alaska was quite an adventure. I learned first hand that labor will happen when it happens and that my body knew just what to do.
A little about Meggan:
Meggan loves to create art that brings happiness, joy, and love into the world. You can find some of her work at You are Loved Designs. She has six kids and a fantastic husband. She also loves yoga and loves to walk her little rat dog named YaYa.
Callie teaches Birth Boot Camp Childbirth Classes and serves clients as a Birth Doula in Flower Mound and Denton County, TX. Some of her favorite things are birth, Brene Brown, her three precocious little girls, making new creations for her Etsy shop, and stashing treats in her closet for a rainy day. You can contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.