Birth Story |  Delivery at 35 weeks

by Becky
Published: Updated:

The birth of baby #5 was unlike any other I’ve experienced. But he’s here and he’s healthy. Even with an early 35 week delivery, he did not need to go to the NICU. I’m so glad he’s ok, that’s what matters the most! Here is his birth story.

birth story 35 week baby

Background and Birth History

First a little background and details of my previous pregnancies.

Baby #1- Naturally went into labor at 37 weeks exactly. Labor was 7 hours long. Very textbook, water broke, went to hospital, got an epidural (it was way too strong and I couldn’t feel a thing), he was born and had no complications except a severe case of jaundice.

Baby #2- Naturally went into labor at 37 weeks exactly. Went into labor about midnight. Got in the bath about an hour later. When I got out, I realized contractions were incredibly strong. I woke up Cam and we drove to the hospital, all the while I knew the baby was coming fast. Water broke in the car on the way. Walked into the hospital and delivered 10 minutes later. I was not prepared for a natural birth, but was fully dilated when arriving at the hospital. It was my easiest recovery and fastest labor at 3 hours long.

Baby #3- I had an incredible fear of not making it to the hospital after baby #2 was born. So with baby #3 the second I had contractions, I went to the hospital, I was 38 weeks along. At the hospital I discovered I was dilated to a four, and they admitted me.

Labor progressed very slowly and they said they were going to have to give me pitocin. I had heard horror stories of how pitocin makes labor more painful, and opted to get an epidural for this one. The epidural only worked on the left side of my body. It was torture being glued to the bed, but still feeling alot of pain. Baby came healthy and strong. Labor time was 7 hours.

Baby #4- I decided I was going to go natural on this delivery since my last epidural experience was pretty miserable. Contractions started at 37 and a half weeks. They started out like Braxton hicks. But throughout the day, they became more painful. I’m not sure when labor actually started, it was that subtle. 

I waited for contractions to start getting closer together and more rhythmic but they didn’t. I would get one 3 minutes apart, and the next would be 10 minutes, then 5, then 20 minutes. Due to this, I didn’t think I was progressing with the labor. After eating dinner that night about 6pm my water broke. I knew I was very far along at that point.

I listened to my hypnobirthing soundtrack as we raced to the hospital. I was holding her in as best I could. Same as baby #2, baby #4 was delivered within 10 minutes of arriving at the hospital. Time from when my water broke to delivery, just over an hour. 

No Homebirth?

I know it’s very common among homesteaders and those inclined to a more natural lifestyle to have home birth. This is something that I have considered but ultimately decided against. I don’t have anything against it and I think for those who can do it, that is awesome!

For me, I didn’t have the desire to have a home birth. I also feel more comfortable with the extra cushion of having lots of lifesaving medical equipment around. I have incredibly high anxiety, especially with everything surrounding children and knew that home birth wasn’t a great option if I was going to have a panic attack the whole time.

Even though I have had uncomplicated births, I gave birth to borderline premature babies in the past and that was another factor in my decision. I think mothers generally have good intuition in this regard as to whether or not a baby should be born at home, or if they should go to the hospital. I followed mine, and I’m glad I did.  

Baby #5 (Current Birth Story)

The Beginning

Ok now for the current pregnancy, labor, and delivery. I’ve had an incredible amount of contractions throughout the duration of this pregnancy. They slowly got more and more painful but on the night of Monday, May 15, I started to wake up in pain with them. I was 35 weeks and 4 days pregnant. 

This time, the labor was so different, all the contraction pain was focused in my lower back and it was so painful, even at the beginning. All that night, I stayed up to see if the contractions would get closer together, but they stayed 5-7 minutes and occasionally spread out to 10 minutes apart.

At about 4 am, I went to the bathroom and noticed I was bleeding. This totally freaked me out, having never bled during a pregnancy before. I woke Cam up and said we need to go to the hospital, I want to get checked out. 

In the car contractions were painful and 3 minutes apart. Luckily, I could feel baby moving this whole time and that was reassuring. After arriving at the hospital, I explained the situation, and they didn’t seem worried. Their lack of worry helped me not to feel so worried.

The nurses checked and I was 1cm dilated. I wanted to cry. An entire night of no sleep and so much pain I had barely progressed at all. It was so different from all my other pregnancies. 

At around 7 am, a doctor came and said a small amount of blood was no big deal, just a sign that labor may be coming soon and the cervix was starting to dilate. He said we could go home, and I was happy to, since by this point I was starting to get hungry and I realized I was a long way off from having a baby.

Day 2 of Labor

The contractions from the night before died off to being only a few times an hour and it was bearable. On the night of Tuesday May 16th, contractions started to ramp up again. It felt so similar to the night before. Lots of lower back pain and so incredibly painful and uncomfortable. 

I was going on about two hours of sleep from the night prior and was so tired. I tried to sleep through the 5 or 10 minutes when I wasn’t having a contraction. Sometimes it worked, sometimes it didn’t.

When I was awake, I did a lot of research as to how I could get my back labor to be less painful and why it was happening.

I discovered it was likely because the baby was head down, but facing sunny side up. Naturally, I tried to do a bunch of exercises to remedy this and get baby in the right position but it was no use. 

Contractions fizzled out by the time morning came around and I was able to sleep for an hour, because I had asked Cameron to stay home from work to help with kids and be available in case we needed to run to the hospital again.

Day 3 of Labor

On Wednesday, I went out to the garden and started to weed and plant things. I figured if I was going to be in pain all day, I may as well get some stuff done. I came inside afterwards feeling achy, and sore, but happier. 

Wednesday night, the same drill happened again. More contractions and closer together this time. At one point I was timing them and they got super rhythmic for about an hour. I started to get ready to go to the hospital, but by the time I finished, the contractions were spread out to twenty minutes. Ugh.

This was night three of no sleep.

Day 4 of Labor

By morning, I was balling and saying to Cameron I didn’t know how much more of this “false labor” I could take. 

Cam said why don’t you call the doctor, so I did and talked to the nurse. I told her what was going on, and her immediate response was “we can’t really do anything for you”. I started to cry on the phone at that point and she said why don’t you come in to the clinic, and we’ll check everything.

I was at least relieved to get to see my doctor and explain everything, even if it amounted to nothing.

A Light at the End of the Tunnel

Cam drove me to the appointment and I again explained everything to the nurse. They decided to check my progress to see if I had dilated at all and my doctor said, “you’re dilated to a six and 100% effaced, you need to drive straight from here to the hospital.”

I was equal parts happy that at least I had made some progress, and surprised that it was all the sudden such a hurry to go to the hospital. Cam said “What will you do there that she isn’t doing at home?” And he said, I’ll break her water and that should speed things up. 

At this point I was thinking only that there may be a light to the end of the tunnel and it seemed like a good option. Doctor informed me that it was his wife’s birthday and he needed to take her to dinner so he may not be there for the actual delivery. He works with another doctor who would be there instead. Great.

So we figured since I wasn’t currently in active labor and having contractions like at night, we would pass on the doctor’s advice to go straight to the hospital and instead go home, get our stuff, and make arrangements for the kids.

We went home, met up with my sister and she took the kids, then gathered all our things, and ate lunch. I knew they wouldn’t let me eat at the hospital once I got there and I was determined not to go hungry.

It was a strange feeling driving to the hospital because I wasn’t having a ton of contractions at that moment, like some of my other pregnancies. 

We took a video of this:

YouTube video

The Hospital and the Delivery

After arriving at the hospital, I got all situated, and they checked again saying I was at about a 6.5. They asked if I wanted an epidural. This was a difficult decision for me, since I honestly had preferred my natural labors and really wanted to do the same.

But this labor was already so extremely painful and I was going off 3 days of no sleep and was so tired. Even so, I decided not to get the epidural at that point. 

Another doctor came in and broke my water (first time I’ve ever had that happen not naturally) to kick things into gear. An hour passed, and I didn’t feel much different. I had a couple painful contractions, but nothing like I had experienced the nights prior. 

They checked again, and I was at a 7.  After another two hours, it was 5:30pm at this point and they checked again. I was dilated to a 7.5. 

Contractions had really started to kick in at this point, I was having them hard and strong for an hour. I felt like I wasn’t going to make it if I was dilating a half centimeter every two hours.

The doctor and nurse mentioned pitocin was probably in the cards if I didn’t make more progress soon. Seriously!? This was not how I envisioned this labor happening. I couldn’t even fathom being in more pain with pitocin and I caved and asked for the epidural.

The anesthesiologist came in and I was shaking so hard from contractions. But after about 25 minutes, the epidural was in. Contractions were now coming on hard and fast, and the epidural was not working.

I felt tingly in the legs but in my back and abdomen, the point of concentrated pain, I could feel EVERYTHING. The anesthesiologist pumped up the medicine and my legs started to go numb but I still felt everything from the waist up. 

Epidural had been in for maybe thirty minutes now and I was just reeling in pain at every contraction. Now I had no control, was completely immobile and lying prostrate which was the worst way for me to handle the back labor.

I felt an inkling to push at this point and the nurse said let me check you first. The she called out that I was about 8.5 cm dilated, don’t push yet. They turned me to my side to try and get the epidural to work and I said again, “I have to push now!” 

Literally 3 minutes had passed since the last time she checked and was like, “Yep, you’re complete!” It felt good to push, but being numb in the legs, it slowed everything down. After about 10 pushes, he was crowning. And two more after that and he was out. 

The pain relief is always super immediate. It’s amazing what the body can do.

The epidural never did work the way it was intended, numb legs and complete feeling everywhere else. So I guess I’m 0 for 3 on epidurals. It always sounds nice, but they just don’t seem to work right for me.

birth story 35 weeks

I felt so much joy at being able to see him for the first time! They put him on me immediately, waited a bit, then cut the cord and let me do skin to skin with him for an hour before they did anything else. 

It was all sort of surreal after that. After an eight year gap of not having kids, having another newborn was so new and different in the best way possible. It was a very difficult delivery, but the end result was worth it. 

Why back labor? The doctor said the baby was not sunny side up at delivery, but he did have his hand right by his face and the cord sort of in the way. He attributed the back labor to that.

Our stay at the Hospital

The first day at the hospital is always pretty good for me. I’m on cloud nine from seeing the baby, and I pretty much get waited on hand and foot. Even though I’m sore and recovering, I feel about a million times better than when I was in labor.

I know some people don’t like to get poked and prodded by nurses, but it doesn’t bother me too much. I find it more reassuring that all is well when we are checked on and am more relaxed.

By day two at the hospital, I was pretty sure they were trying to poison me with their food so I would have to stay longer. Cam and I decided it was worse than a school lunch and wondered how a facility that is supposed to help people get well could feed its patients rubber chicken, jello, and portion sizes meant for a toddler.

Aside from that, we had a decent stay. I ended up having to stay for a day three since the baby was premature and it’s policy to keep them there a little longer because of that.

Baby was delivered at 35 weeks 6 days according to the doctor but by my calculations he was exactly 36 weeks along. Not much difference I suppose, but the doctors and nurses kept gushing at how healthy and strong he was for a 35 week old baby! 

He had no problems feeding and took to breastfeeding like a champ. He did not need to be admitted to the NICU, yay!


After leaving the hospital, the first thing I did was went out to my garden and ate strawberries till I was almost sick. Real food tasted so good after the hospital. 

Aside from that, we are settling into our new routine. I had a good recollection that newborns sleep a lot and had that stuck in my mind that I would still have some time to myself. But I forgot how much time feeding, changing diapers, and burping takes, it’s a full time job! It’s been an adjustment, but Cam and the other kids have been helping so much. 

I am easing back into gardening and preserving and doing other things around our home. It’s been pretty easy to know when I’ve done too much for the day. I feel so much better now though that he is out. It’s nice to have removed the discomfort and gained a baby in return. 

I am so thankful he is here and well. We love him!

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L Wilson May 28, 2023 - 5:42 pm

Congratulations Becky!!! ❤️❤️I was worrying about you yesterday, realizing it had been a while since hearing from you on YouTube. I am so happy, after checking and reading your post today, that you are doing well. Take good care of yourself and get lots of rest. See you soon when you are able to post more videos.

theseasonalhomestead June 1, 2023 - 9:06 pm

Thank you so much!

GardenLover May 28, 2023 - 6:08 pm

Oh Becky, I am so happy for you guys! Im sorry about the pain, you are so strong!! Praying for you postpartum! May Jesus give you a abundance of peace and joy! He is so precious and sweet, I’m sure the kids are having a wonderful time loving him! What a special time for you all to take in! 🥰 welcome baby Riggs!

theseasonalhomestead June 1, 2023 - 9:06 pm

Thank you so much!

Amy May 28, 2023 - 7:02 pm

Sorry it was so slow and stressful. Yikes.
All of my babies have been back labor. I spent a lot of time on all fours while laboring. I was born sunny side up , so I guess that makes me more likely to have them that way?! They broke my water with Miss L and it was so helpful for speeding everything up. With baby #5 they wanted to induce me and I put them off a little bit (41weeks). I was so scared of the pitocin. I followed labor inducing directions from Suzy’s midwife and took some herbs and it worked like a charm. It was such a relief and answer to prayer. I ended up with shingles from the stress, but luckily he was out by then. Worth all of it , of course! 🙂

theseasonalhomestead June 1, 2023 - 9:12 pm

Wow, I didn’t realize that all your labors were back labor! I have a new found appreciation for those that can endure that much pain 🙂

Laurel M. May 28, 2023 - 11:55 pm

Congratulations!! I’m so happy for all of you! I’ll pray for your postpartum peace. You’ve been through quite a lot. Thanks for sharing, I love birth stories.

theseasonalhomestead June 1, 2023 - 9:12 pm

Thank you!

Lorena W May 29, 2023 - 12:53 pm

Just wanted to make sure you knew who I am, one of your faithful YouTube followers, LorenaW62. I left a comment here yesterday but only entered L Wilson. Lots of love and good wishes! ❤️❤️❤️

theseasonalhomestead June 1, 2023 - 9:13 pm

Thanks Lorena 🙂

Susan May 30, 2023 - 2:00 am

Congratulations on your birth and new baby boy. He’s just beautiful! I had back labor with baby #1 and he finally turned during transition. What a relief! You look so beautiful, Becky. I completely agree with your assessment of hospital food. It’s horrible. Please get rest and heal well. All of you are in my prayers.

theseasonalhomestead June 1, 2023 - 9:14 pm

Thank you!

Haley Macklin May 30, 2023 - 9:33 am

A big congratulations from Australia. Phew, that labour exhausted me just reading about it! My longest was only 28 hours, but days and days must have totally wiped you out! You’re a rock star!
Enjoy the newborn weeks, gosh they fly by too fast. And enjoy the strawberries (in moderation 😜)

theseasonalhomestead June 1, 2023 - 9:14 pm

Haha, thank you!! 🙂

Ashley May 30, 2023 - 6:55 pm

Happy to hear healthy Mama, healthy little one. Enjoy this time with your family. I have 5 little ones 4 and under, this time is precious and goes by too fast.

theseasonalhomestead June 1, 2023 - 9:15 pm

Thank you!

Nat May 31, 2023 - 12:21 am

Congratulations Becky, Cam and family on the safe arrival of your baby.
Becky I will keep you in my prayers as you recover physically and mentally from such an exhausting labour. It is never easy when you are so depleted heading into motherhood and older bodies do take longer to bounce back than young ones – at least that has been my experience. Thanks for sharing I have been checking your site often hoping that things had gone smoothly for you.

theseasonalhomestead June 1, 2023 - 9:17 pm

Thank you! Yes definitely a slower recovery time than when I had my first at 21 years old 🙂 Thankfully I’m starting to feel much better now!

Vi June 1, 2023 - 1:20 am

I’m so happy that you and baby are doing well! I’ve been checking in on your youtube channel daily for an update and every other day here on your blog, so I’m relieved for the update. I also have issues with anxiety and I have to be honest, I thought about yout and the baby every day, wishing you both the absolute best! <3 Vi,

theseasonalhomestead June 1, 2023 - 9:18 pm

Thank you so much!

Lisa G June 2, 2023 - 10:25 pm

Oh my goodness he is perfect! I’m glad you guys are doing so well. Epidurals didn’t work for me either! I feel your pain, literally. I have 4 kiddos & no plans for more. The last baby turned much more of my hair grey, so I’m working on better nutrition to put back in my body that has served me so well.

Amanda June 2, 2023 - 11:57 pm

Congratulations on the sweet new miracle! I was reading this and thought “Oh, wow my youngest is eight now. And your youngest was eight and you have a new born. That would be so sweet to watch the older kids interact and help with the baby!”🥰 Hope you and your baby a recovering well! May God always bless you and your family!

Jane June 5, 2023 - 6:10 am

Congratulations to you and your family , love seeing what you and your family do around your homestead xx

Emily S. June 6, 2023 - 9:00 pm

Oh Becky, I’m so happy for you and your family!! It’s so strange how different labor can be from one baby to the next, but especially after it’s been a while between kiddos. Epidurals never worked any magic for me either. I’m glad you’re both healthy and recovering well. Enjoy your gardening season with your new little sidekick!! 🙂

DBL Patriot June 7, 2023 - 1:24 pm

Congratulations on the addition to your wonderful family. You are blessed and inspiring to many of us who follow your story. I’m a nurse anesthesiologist (CRNA) and from my profession, let me apologize for the epidural not working. How terribly disappointing! I usually replace them very quickly if the pain isn’t relieved. But 3 times? I wonder if there is some septal scar tissue in your epidural space that blocks the flow of local anesthetic. IDK. Take care of yourself and enjoy time with the baby. I love the baby hat!

Gabriela June 10, 2023 - 5:34 pm

Congratulations ♥ what a journey has been! the important thing here is that both of you are healthy and happy, and now your family has welcomed a new member that will be raised full of love in a caring and loving family and community ♥


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