I'm never sure how to start a birth story except to say it is the most beautiful and incredible experience a woman can go through. When I talk to women who are pregnant and tell them how beautiful it is to have a child naturally without the aid of medicines, they look at me and call me crazy!! lol But really, when I see an apprehensive first time mom-to-be, I take great joy in telling them how beautiful in a society that LOVES to fill our heads with fears of the “worst thing you could ever go through”.
Nevaeh was born to us when my son Hayden was 5 1/2. Because I had such an incredible time bringing Hayden to the world, I knew that i would indeed bring Vae in the same way. Relaxed and embracing the beauty of this dance many millions of women share around the world.
I went into labor around 8:30 AM on March 9th. I knew that I was in labor so I informed my mom, sister and partner then “heads up, today is the day”, but continue what they were doing because I had a while before I'd need the support.
I walked Hayden the block to his school for kindergarten. She, like her older brother came 2 weeks early, but this didn't worry me much. I told a few people excitedly when we got to the school that I was in labor. A couple looked worried and asked if I was all alone. “nah” I told them. “my mom is at work on stand-by and can come home whenever I need, as well as my partner being at work on call, and my sister would arrive shortly after her 3 mth-old son's doctors appt. “I'm fine, I'm just going home to putter around for a bit”.
By 11:30 when I went back to get Hayden from school, I was again asked if I was alone and if I wanted one of them to come with me? I once again told them that I would be ok and that someone would be with me soon so I really was ok going home with just Hayden and I. My sister called me at this point to tell me she was caught up in the doctor's and would be right over when she got out, but they had blood work to do on her son. My mom called and said it was getting busy at the restaurant, but if need be, she could close out her tables and come home soon. I told them both I was just fine and see them soon.
We got home and I made Hayden some lunch, needing to take breaks every 5 minutes to stop and lean on the counter for support. My contractions in both labors came every 5 minutes from the start and only intensified as they went along. This I found normal and embraced every new contraction's intensity thinking, “this is right, I'm opening to allow this baby to come to us.” Around 12 PM, I called Scott at work and told him “Stay focused (he's a crane operator) but you'll probably have to meet me at the hospital instead of at home… He asked me if I needed him to come home and I told him that we had a while, so not to stress, I'd call him and tell him if I needed him to come home NOW.
As Hayden ate his lunch, I retreated to my bedroom for some solitude to work through the contractions. At one point I called him into the room and asked that he push on the bottom of my back to relieve some of the pressure. I stayed in the room for about another half hour, breathing heavy through each contraction. At one point, midway through one contraction, Hayden came to the room to ask a question and I asked him nicely to wait a moment and I'd come talk to him when I was done. “but mom” so I told him again, just wait please, I'll come out in a sec… “but Moo-oom” so I yelled “Hayden, get OUT of this room and I'll talk to you in a minute!!!” Only to have him sulk away muttering how mean I was being today!! I immediately felt bad and as soon as the contraction ended, I went out to tell him that his sister was coming, and it's a lot of work to have a baby, so sorry to yell, but just sit and relax and eat his lunch… this pleased him a little and he went back to the living room.
I went back to my room and started to worry a little. I had been in labor less than 5 hours and assumed I was still in the early stages of labor. Here I was rocking back and forth on all fours and breathing through each contraction as they steadily got worse. I remember thinking, if this is still early labor, this one could be a bad labor indeed and was getting a little scared at this point being alone anymore.
At 12:30, I called Scott back and started crying saying that it was getting scary and didn't want to be alone anymore. He hung up and was home within a half hour. When he walked in, I was SO glad to see him, I started to cry again and this worried him… “I think we should go to the hospital now” he stated, and I full-heartedly agreed. After a few moments of sitting with me through my contractions, he called a taxi and told them I was in labor, and they arrived literally in 30 seconds!
We bundled Hayden up, called mom at work and told her we were on our way. With every bump we hit along the way, the contractions intensified even more. They absolutely rocked my whole body every 3 minutes, but I patiently breathed through every one forcing myself to remain calm if I was going to get through the rest of this in one piece. (I figured I still had a few hours) The taxi ride seemed to take FOREVER, then we pulled into the restaurant parking and mom hopped in the back with me.
As she watched, she could see every time I went into a new contraction and timed them, all the while with this look of absolute pride at how shockingly calm I was riding though each wave of intensity. We arrived at the hospital around 2:30 I think, time was slightly blurred… because it was my first time into that hospital and I was still under the healthcare of a different province, they had me fill out a whole stack of paper-work, which was absolute misery. Every 2-3 minutes, I had to stop writing to squat down where I stood and get though the next contraction.
I think I got a little snappy with the receptionist when she asked too many questions, seemingly oblivious to my state. Within about half hour, they had a wheel-chair to take me up to the prenatal floor. I had to make the male nurse (whom I took great pleasure in looking at..lol) stop every couple minutes so I could get out and crouch down again. He seemed a lot friendlier and understanding, and patiently waited until I sat again so he could continue our journey.
I got up to the examination room and they told me to wait until a nurse came in to do the internal exam to determine how far dilated I was. I was going through transition at this point, and didn't really want anyone touching me, but she insisted that she needed to see where I was at. As soon as she did the internal, she called another nurse and said, this poor girl is 9 cm and needs a delivery room NOW.
This was the best news I had heard all day and made me relax considerably. Just when I was thinking that this would maybe kill me compared to my son's birth, I found out that indeed, it was almost over!! They moved me to the delivery room and informed me that they had called my doctor and she was on her way.
I sat restlessly for a few moments and was starting to feel the urge to push, but held off as best I could. The doctor walked in just as my body started to bear down for me… She asked me “now it said in your file that you didn't want any pain relief or drugs for this correct?” (she was actually the doctor filling in for my doctor while away on holidays) I told her that No, I didn't want anything, and she replied “well good, cuz it's too late for anything now (with a laugh) but I could offer you some gas if you'd like” I had gas once when in labor with Hayden and it made me feel so disoriented and alienated from my body, completely out of control, so I again replied “no thank you, I just want to continue with this please” She couldn't believe how relaxed and polite I was, despite being about to push her out!! 🙂
That was the point where I told her I could no longer not push, and she said, well you're ready, so go ahead. She broke my waters at this point and then my body said, ok go!! I bore down with all my strength and could feel her moving so fluidly down, it surprised me how easy it was going (Hayden took and hour and a half to push out).
My sister arrived at the hospital just as I had started pushing and begged mom to go wait outside with Hayden, as she had been to many births and this was Heather's first to attend and she really wanted to be there for it. I think I pushed through about 5 contractions and felt that “ring of fire” for only a few short seconds and her head was out. I recall whispering at that point, “OH I hate this part”!!
One small push later and at 3:35 PM the rest of her body came out and she was up on my chest being wiped and stroked by a few different people. I took a moment to say a prayer of thanks for such an easy and successful delivery of our second angel, let her latch on and breastfeed for about 10 minutes and then handed her off to Daddy so he could look into the eyes of his new princess.
Hayden was ushered into the room at this point as well to meet his new sister. As she was being cleaned up and weighed, 6lbs 13 oz (the EXACT same as her brother's weight) I birthed the placenta, which Hayden watched in almost horror!! lol We talked about it later when I was home and I explained that this was the home his baby sister had been living in when she was in mommy's tummy. He said it looked kinda like a brain and it was really cool!! lol
We were in the hospital less than 24 hours, and the nurses deemed that indeed, this angel named Neaveh Lee was in great health and there was no need to keep her in the hospital. Many nurses came into congratulate me and tell me that they had not seen someone go through childbirth so silently and with such little effort. Mostly they had women that would be screaming and on medications claiming they were dying!! lol apparently my birthing experience was talked about in detail outside of my room!! We were sent home by 11:30 the next day, And wow was it great to be back in the comfort of our own home!!
Later that day, while Hayden was holding “his” baby, he told me “oh mom, I love this baby sister SO much. when she grows up, if anyone ever messes with her, I'm going to punch them right in the nose!!!” I told him that this was always going to be his little sister and he should definitely take good care and protect her always. He has been the best big brother a mom could ask for, was SO helpful when we came home and has been her protector since the day she was born. They are now 9 and almost 4, and to this day, he remains very protective of her and is always there to wipe her tears if she is crying!!
Children are the most incredible gift and blessing God can put into our lives, and I give thanks to my Father every day for these little blessing I call my children!! Small humans actually because they are so much more than just a child!! I am currently 4 months pregnant with my third child, and although it's with a different daddy, the whole experience is just as beautiful and Hayden and Nevaeh eagerly await the arrival of their new baby sibling!! The next chapter of these beautiful stories will be in about 5 1/2 months!! Can't wait to keep you posted!!