Knockin’ Boots and Knitting Booties: Brighid’s Birth Story!

Knocking Boots and Knitting Booties is a no-holds-barred series about sex during (and after) pregnancy from MsBehaved contributor BrighidLast time, Brighid received a vibrator- at a baby shower? This week, Brighid shares the story of giving birth to her son, at long last! Read on!

Knockin’ Boots and Knittin’ Booties is back! It’s been a while, but after a rough birth and the subsequent no sleep, I’m finally able to write about my birth story and will get back to blogging regularly about sex post-partum. I’ll continue to share my own experiences about (trying to) get my sex life back after a rough induction and vacuum delivery, and offer on-going resources for common (and uncommon) post-partum problems.

For now, here’s our birth story.



We had a growth ultrasound scheduled because my fundal measurement (size of uterus) had decreased from 37 weeks growth to 35 weeks growth for the past 2 weeks. Baby felt small and the midwives were concerned. During the ultrasound we find out that the baby was only measuring about 35 weeks in terms of growth (I was 39 weeks pregnant), estimated 5.5 lbs, and my amniotic fluid was dangerously low. When I asked what that meant, the tech said, “well, today’s a great day for a birthday.”

We knew this was a possibility so we had the car packed and ready to go. For the health of the babe and myself, they decided to induce me on Friday night. Unfortunately, the baby was still in a crappy position. The best way to shift him into a more favorable one was to walk around, change positions, etc in order to get him to shift. In non-birth terms: this meant an epidural would be unfavorable because it would inhibit my ability to move, and increase the potential he’d get stuck resulting in a c-section. I prepared to be chemically induced (where they give you oxytocin in order to chemically force your body into labor and contractions), without pain meds.

Phase 1/ Labor 1 – we start pitocin at 9pm. I labored un-medicated until about 4:30 am (I made it to level 18 for those in the know). It was hard and painful, but MVP provided incredible support and we thought we were doing well…

Complication 1: My blood pressure, which had previously been completely normal, sky rocketed and I developed pre-eclampsia putting me at risk for seizures. On top of the blood pressure, I was stuck at 5 cm and not dilating. An option for lowering blood pressure in an otherwise healthy person like myself was to have an epidural (it causes the vessels to dilate). Between the intensity of the contractions, the blood pressure, and the exhaustion, I went for the drugs.*


Phase 2/ Labor 2 – we had to stop the oxytocin (and stop labor) in order to put in the epidural. After the drugs were in we began all over again. The epidural helped take the edge off, the blood pressure was lower, but continued to be worrisomely high (for us and the med staff).

Complication 2: To force my body to dilate, we needed to increase the oxytocin. Every time we got over a certain point, the intensity of the contractions put the baby’s heart into distress. We couldn’t get the drugs high enough to get me open enough without possibly harming the baby.

Complication 3: I began running a fever between 99-102, so I was drugged, contracting, and feverish.

Complication 4: I’m stuck at 5 cm.

Complication 5: He’s still in a really crappy position, basically facing the inside of my right thigh. To try to get him to flip, MVP the nurse and I are rotating me, numb from the waist down, into a hands and knees position every 10 min.

By 2 pm, I’d only dilated to 6 cm, my blood pressure continued to be a problem, the position continued to be a problem, and we were exhausted. The midwife was concerned and called in the OB to consult. We’re told that due to failure to progress and all of the other stresses, there is a 10% chance of a vaginal delivery. But, to quote the OB, “I can cut into you right now if you want- but I don’t want to cut into you. You don’t want me to cut into you. You’ll heal better if I don’t cut into you. So let’s wait 1.5 hours, keep the oxytocin on really low and see what happens.”

At this point, we spent the next hour or so preparing ourselves for a c-section. We’d been in a state of emergency for nearly 24 hours and were exhausted and scared. But, when the midwife came back to check on me, I measured 7 cm. Apparently the baby could handle the contractions if we kept them slow, low and steady. So we kept watching and waiting.

By 6:30, everyone was surprised that I was ready to push. We pushed for 2 hours and he finally shifted!

Into an even worse position. (seriously kid…). Unable to get him out unassisted, we had the choice of a c-section or a vacuum delivery. This meant an episiotomy, but not abdominal surgery. I went with the second option and he was born at 8:30 pm.


He was 5 lbs 10 oz. Definitely on the small side, and with a lot of head trauma. He also scratched the hell out of his face and was born with a nasty rash (we’re just finishing the antibiotics today). Wasn’t going to win any beauty contests, but beautiful to us.

Recovery has been good. The first day was awful, but every day gets better – the steady stream of vicodin and ibuprofen helped. Feeding was a problem because his head trauma, but is now going well.

Now, four months out, we are thriving – not necessarily sleeping, but thriving. We have a beautiful, expressive, talkative baby. I’ll be referring to him as “Owl” – because his coos sound like the owls we hear hooting around our home. We are adjusting well and I am incredibly happy not to be pregnant.

Next time: I’ll talk more specifically about recovering from an episiotomy and a vacuum delivery, and what it felt like to pop my post-partum cherry.

Read more from Brighid here! 


  1. Anonymous says:

    I can’t wait to read more. I’m one month post partum, still in some pain, and wondering what sex will be like once I can have it again. That baby is super cute!


  1. […] Knockin’ Boots and Knitting Booties: Brighid’s Birth Story! […]

  2. […] no-holds-barred series about sex during (and after) pregnancy from MsBehaved contributor Brighid. Last time, Brighid shared the story of her laborious labor. This week, she talks about getting back into the […]

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