I'm happy to announce that baby Grace has made her arrival! I was having contractions all morning on August 17th. At about 5 PM they started to get quite intense. I started having pressure in my rectum in addition to my pelvis. I'd say they were coming 3-4 minutes apart. We headed to the birth center and finally arrived about 6:30 PM. I don't think they understood how close I was. They sent me to a regular examining room first and checked my cervix, surprised to find that I was already 6 cm dilated. They said they weren't going to send me home again and asked me if I could walk to a birthing suite, that they were going to call my midwife in (since it was after hours). I did walk to the room, but the pressure was so intense that once I was in my room, I couldn't walk again. They quickly tried to get an IV in me to run my medication for my GBS. It took them four or five sticks - I eventually lost count - because I was sweating so much that my veins kept popping. My temperature was over 100 degrees. When they finally got the IV in me, they quickly hooked up the antibiotics and told me to try to hold off as long as I could until the antibiotics were in my system. So I panted through each contraction instead of giving into the urge to push, that was so strong now I told them I could probably deliver her right then. They told me to hold off until my midwife arrived. When she finally came, she checked me. I was already fully dilated and effaced but they were still making me pant through my contractions since I still hadn't gone through my entire bag of antibiotics. The urge to push was ever so strong. My midwife told me to bear into them just a bit if it helped with the pressure. I did, and it did relieve the pain a bit. When the bag was finally empty, which seemed like an eternity but was in fact only about an hour, I was given the ok to push. The trouble now was that by resisting my contractions, Grace was not in an ideal position. She was back to back with me and it was causing her head to not fall into my birth canal. I tried lying on both my left and right sides, I tried pushing while on my back and I tried getting on my hands and knees to push. Nothing was working. I was feeling way too much pressure in my bum so I knew she still wasn't in the right position. My midwife was even trying to turn her head with her fingers in my birth canal but Grace wouldn't budge. I kept thinking about what my midwife said about the possibility that her head was too large to fit through the birth canal but my midwife said my pushing was effective, however if the baby isn't in position, it won't come out. Finally, after about an hour of pushing and Grace stubbornly not wanting to turn, my midwife went and got a peanut ball. It looked like a birthing ball but it was in the shape of a peanut. She had me turn on my left side, put it between my legs and said she'd give it a couple minutes to see if it'd work while she walked out to tend to some other patients. After about just 2 minutes of the ball between my legs, I began having the rectal pressure. Instead of stopping when I felt it, this time I pushed through it... and I felt her turn! In fact, she was already in my birth canal after one push. When I reached down to feel how effective that push was so far, I felt her head! She was crowning! DH looked down and freaked. He went running out of the room to get a nurse. I continued to push through that contraction, exhausted as I was, but all I could think about was getting out this baby so the intense pressure would go away. Next thing I knew, everyone came running back in. The nurse took away the ball and freaked since Grace's head was already at the ring of fire. My midwife didn't even have the chance to put gloves on before her head was out, then I quickly pushed out her body. She said I was only the second bare handed birth she had to deal with lol. DH almost missed the birth, my third all natural, medication-free birth. She was born at 9:08 PM and was passed to me right away. We did about an hour of skin to skin before they took her to weigh her and do her first health exam. Unlike what my midwife thought, I was pleasantly surprised that she was born 8 lbs. even at exactly 39 weeks, making her my smallest baby for gestational age. She is also my most content baby who hardly cries and eats like a champ. I couldn't have asked for a better rainbow baby!