Claire’s Birth

by Stephanie Endres
I was due on January 20th. This was my sixth baby and all of my previous babies were born within 4 days of my due date, one even on my due date. In November we started looking into the possibility of a home birth. Kathi was highly recommended by two friends. When we started talking to people about having a home birth we were surprised how many people we knew had home births and had Kathi as their midwife. After meeting with Kathi
and Katy we felt much more comfortable with having a home birth and they felt 
we were good candidates.
I started having contractions a week before I was due and anticipated going into labor soon. Unfortunately I had contractions on and off for three weeks. Finally on January 31st I started having labor contractions at about 11:30 in the morning. It was a beautiful 55 degree day so I went for a walk to try and keep the contractions going. I had an appointment with Kathi at 2:30 and she confirmed that things were finally progressing and I was dilated to about 2-3. I was so happy to know we were finally going to be having our baby girl. I just didn’t realize how quickly she would come.
My husband, Kevin, was in Gaylord for a meeting and due back around 5:00. After my appointment with Kathi I had to pick up one of our sons, Noah, from school at 3:30 and get all the kids suitcases packed and then I had to drop Noah and the suitcases off at my in-laws. I got home around 4:30 and contractions were getting more intense. Kevin arrived home a 5:20 and by that point I was getting very uncomfortable. I was trying hard not to ask him to do too many things at once, but in the first 15 minutes he was home he got me something to eat, starting filling the tub, got himself something to eat, and got pots of water on the stove to start boiling for when the water heater ran out of water. Kathi and Katy both commented how impressed they were with what Kevin had gotten done before they arrived.
At 5:35 I called Kathi to come help us get ready because Kevin was running from one thing to the next, the only problem was she out on a walk with her husband so she had to run home. Katy was actually able to get to our house faster and arrived at 6:00 and at that point I was having very intense contractions every 2-3 minutes. Kevin had gotten the birth tub half full and I couldn’t wait anymore and decided to get in. Kathi arrived at 6:15 and you were born at 6:35 after 20 very intense minutes of contractions.
Kathi arrived just in time! Although babies’ number four and five came rather quickly once I was in active labor, I never expected labor to progress so quickly. Although Claire Louise was 11 days late she came fast and furious when she decided she was ready!  When Kevin called our parents to tell them Claire was born they were absolutely shocked to hear from him so quickly. My mother-in-law just kept saying, “but she just left here, what do you mean the baby was born?”
Because everything happened so quickly, the last twenty minutes were extremely intense, but well worth it to have the baby at home and I can proudly say that this was my first birth without an epidural. My husband and I both were very happy with the home birth experience and if the Endres family is blessed with another baby we will definitely have them at home. I tell everyone, “I wish I would have had the other kids at home.”
Claire Louise Endres 8lbs 3ozs, 22 inches, 6:35 pm, 13 ¾” head diameter