I felt like a caged animal, pacing back and forth with no where to go. Greg had taken our daughter to her Grandparents’ about an hour before and we were watching TV, trying to wait until the last possible minute to go to the hospital.
2 1/2 years later, I was in the bath tub recounting my previous labor in-between contractions. Let’s see. If we left for the hospital around 7 and he was born before 10, then this baby should be here by…ow..mmmmm…ooooooo…oooooopenopenopen…
Greg was downstairs with our son, and our daughter was at school. I was in the labor zone, by myself and totally uninhibited making my dying cow noises and doing my hula-girl-who-swallowed-a-watermelon hip swaying.
I was just getting to the point that I wasn’t sure how much longer I could do this. I was exhausted & not getting much of a break between contractions. I had figured that this baby should be here by 7:30, so let’s see…how many more contractions would that amount to if…
4 more hours, max. I can do this. But what if I’m wrong? I’ve only been in labor 13 hours. The last one was 25. It’s like running a marathon without knowing how far the finish line is. Greg was leaving to get our daughter from school and taking our son with him for the ride. I wasn’t looking forward to having everyone at home.
Oh my gosh I am so thirsty. Is there still a water bottle on my night stand? No, I don’t want to get out of the tub. I keep feeling like this baby is close. Don’t want to end up with a huge mess on the carpet. No don’t think things like that, you’ll just be disappointed. Get the water. No, I don’t want to get out. Should I send him a text & ask him to bring me water when he gets home? Hmm…
I laid the towel on the edge of the tub & rested my head on it between contractions. Weird. I’m falling asleep between contractions. This is nice.
I think this baby is going to be born soon. No second guessing, I really do.
The contractions picked back up and I felt a small gush of fluid. I glanced at the time on my phone. Yep, he’s going to miss it.
With the next contraction I felt a big gush in the water and I lifted onto my knees as my body bore down. The oh so familiar bowling ball in my bottom feeling intensified and I waited for the next one. Another involuntary push and the burning started. This was the only time I voluntarily pushed. In a seconds long “devil/angel” moment, I decided that slow and steady be darned, one good push and I was done with the burn. Holy crow this is crazy. Half in, half out, soft baby hair floating in the water. Amazing.
Another contraction, another involuntary push and the body came shooting out. Scooping baby up, I awkwardly tried to lean back and keep baby’s body in the water but head out. Glanced at the phone, 3:29. I unplugged the drain and grabbed the towel to wrap around baby. Darn. Didn’t think I’d need another towel.
There is no word in the English language to adequately describe the joy & elation of holding your baby after an uninterrupted, physiological birth. I can see that same, indescribable feeling on mothers’ faces in homebirth photographs.
This body of mine is not much to look at, but it is incredible, powerful, strong. The birth of this tiny blue eyed boy two years ago changed me and I’m forever grateful.
I wrote this intentionally without re-reading the birth story I wrote shortly after his birth, since I wanted it to be based on today’s memory.