It has been 6 weeks since Finley came into this world. In a lot of ways it feels like she has been part of our family forever. In other ways it feels like it was just yesterday that I was down on all fours in the midst of labor. After Finley was born I wasn’t sure I was even going to write a birth story. It seemed too raw, too personal and too real to share. I had grand plans of making a video (we took some over the shoulder footage of Finley’s birth) and talk about all the details of our home birth. After it happened though, I just wasn’t sure.
When Rowan was born I felt like super women. Like no matter what life threw at me from then on, I could knock it out of the park because I had given birth to her. In the weeks leading up to Finley’s birth, I held on to that strength. I wasn’t scared. I remembered Rowan’s labor being hard, but I remember feeling strong throughout and digging deep to find strength to get through. As I starting getting closer to my due date with Finley my courage starting slipping. My due date came and went and fear starting creeping in. Going past your due date is a very emotionally tiring thing for most women, at least for me it is. I was tired, anxious and loosing confidence that I wouldn’t be able get through having a home birth. I don’t know why I let it get the best of me. I knew I was stronger than that. Labor is a funny thing though. It really is one of the most life changing moments you experience and you have absolutely no control over when it’s going to happen. Yes, you have a ballpark but being a ticking time bomb really does a number on your mental state.
I am not going to go into all the details of her birth but here’s the quick little story… It was Saturday the 5th. I wasn’t feeling all that well. Kev drew me a bath and then he left to go sledding with Rowan to give me some peace and quiet. I started having some really randomly spaced contractions. Some were a few mins apart, some were 15 mins or more apart. Didn’t think too much about it. About 45mins later- Bam! Contractions were 2 mins apart and consistently 2 mins apart. I called Kev and told him to come home. Home he came. We called our Midwife at 2:30pm. She arrived by 3pm. Contractions were pretty much a minute or less apart. They were right on top of each other, I hardly could get a break. It was extremely intense and I think that is what caught me off guard. I had no time to even gather some strength or dig deep inside. I honestly felt like I was just barely getting by. I cried. I screamed. I wanted to give up. The fact that she wasn’t tucking her chin down and that I had a full bladder left me in some pretty intense pain on top of the contractions. I didn’t even make it upstairs to our bedroom where I thought she would be born. 2.5 hours after it all started, little Miss Finley James was born in our family room as Rowan took a nap upstairs.
She was healthy, beautiful and our home birth was more than I ever expected it to be, but I was left feeling really defeated after all was said and done. I hate to admit that out loud, it makes me cry even thinking about it. Her birth really was amazing and I wouldn’t want to change any of it, but for a few weeks I struggled with this feeling of embarassment over how I thought I handled it mentally. I felt like I only got through it because well, there is no stopping a baby once they decided to make their entrance. Then one day as I was holding her, staring at this mini version of myself, it hit me… A wave of emotion came over me and I finally felt proud. In that moment with the sun shining in, cuddling my sweet baby girl, I felt invincible. Who cares how I think I handled it. You are always your worst critic, right? Finley was a part of me. She will always be half me, half Kev. I slowly created her with my heart, soul and body for nine whole months. Psalm 139:13 says “For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my motherâ€™s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made…” And here I was stuck on the fact that I thought I did a bad job bringing her into this world. She was absolutely perfect and nothing about how she came into this world could change that.
I was able to have a 9lbs 8oz. baby girl at home, with no drugs, in 2.5 hours and for that I have decided I deserve a jump high five and a piece of chocolate.
p.s. I think any way you end up having a baby deserves a jump high five!!
p.p.s Having a home birth was so dang awesome! Nothing about me feeling defeated had anything to do with being at home. If anything it made me feel more relaxed, more comfortable and more in charge of what was going on. Let me just say there is no better feeling than going through labor and then being able to get into your very own bed, in your very own pjs and have your mom bring you a home cooked meal and then falling asleep cuddled next to your new little one and your husband. If we are blessed to have any more kids, each and every one of them (Lord willing) will be born at home.
& the picture of all of us the morning after her birth cracks me up. Talk about bed head!