I got a call from J about 1am to let me know that she was heading to the hospital. She had been contracting since about 10pm and they were increasing in frequency and duration to about every two minutes. She also reported that the last few contractions she felt a little like pushing and had some bloody show.
Uh-oh. I don't live really close so I figured I better head in as well because she sounded pretty 'active' (as in getting close to having a baby!).
J already has a handsome little boy who she had birthed naturally. She was planning the same for this one but had been a little nervous that it might be a long labor like her first. J and her husband had a doula who would be assisting her as well.
J, her husband, and the doula had arrived shortly before I did, maybe about five minutes or so. When I walked into the room, I found J squatting by the bed with the nurse and doula beside. The doula was telling her not to push yet. I checked J when she was ready for me to do so. No surprise - she was 10/100/0. She immediately wanted to get back into her squatting position. I told her she could be wherever she needed to be and could push whenever she was ready.
Pushing with the next contraction in a squatting position, her water broke. The doula was to one sise and J's husband was on the other side. I threw some gloves on as J let out a loud primal groan that had 'this baby is coming now' written all over it :) I squeezed in between the doula and husband from behind J just as J started to crown. She wanted to feel the baby's head so I helped her get her hand to where the head was crowning. She pushed beautifully, slow and controlled, her son into my waiting hands. I had her stand and passed the baby up to her. She relaxed in bed while we waited for the cord to stop pulsating, which she then cut the cord herself.
It was a fast but beautiful birth and I was so happy I had dragged my butt out of bed to meet her there, as I would have missed it otherwise! Here's a picture from after the birth (story and pic posted with J's permission!).