Last Tuesday 24 August I woke up feeling a little…odd. I had had a few contractions throughout the night and early morning that were definitely something, but still not really anything. It was enough however, to prompt me to say to Kevin before he left for work that I truly thought today would be the day. He, on the other hand, thought it was just wishful thinking on my part.
I kept having strong contractions that followed no real pattern throughout the morning. It was surreal thinking I was in labor, and still just going about the daily business of life; caring for my children, hanging clothes on the line, reading stories, returning emails. About 11:30, I pulled up ContractionMaster and showed Aviana how to use it, so all I had to do was holler at her to “Push start!” when one would flow over me.
I also called my mom and my midwife to tell them to be on high alert. My mom believed me and went to work prepared to leave when she got “the call”. My midwife took a Kevin approach of “this could go on for a long time”, and wasn’t really thinking that 38 weeks 3 days, I was really going to have the baby today. (She told me this after I had the baby, she was super encouraging whenever I spoke/texted her.)
When Kevin came in for lunch at about one, I told him I was in labor, the contractions were varying from 8-15 minutes apart. He still didn’t believe me! He told me he had hay to mow, and the baby needed more time to bake. I told him I couldn’t help it, I was pretty sure the baby would be born today.
By that time, the contractions did start coming closer together, and the evidence convinced my skeptic of a husband. I would lie down and stretch out when I had one, vocalizing low and long and breathing out “Oh baby, baby, baby, baby” because I really wanted to meet our little one and wanted to encourage him or her to come on out. He began making phone calls asking for people to pray for us and our baby, while I finished up some last minute things–like getting baby clothes out of storage, making a birthday card for my cousin, random odds and ends. Cadrian was down for his nap, and the girls were quietly entranced in the atmosphere. We called Kevin’s mom at work to come get the younger two around three, when Cadrian would most likely be awake.
My mom arrived around three. The midwives got here around 3:30. After talking for a bit, and sitting through a few more contractions, they checked me. I was dilated to 9 centimeters. My midwife said that probably my water would break soon and I would start pushing. Everything was calm and peaceful. I continued to lie down and stretch out during a contraction wave and then be up and normally conversing and laughing between them.
Kevin’s mom called to say she was stopping at the store first, and got here around four. I don’t think she realized how imminent birth was, as I looked so normal, standing there in the kitchen chatting with her. Brielle and Cadrian left with her a few minutes after four. I wandered back into the living room, where the midwives had covered everything with plastic sheeting and chux pads.
I lay down on the couch to have another wave and with a small sigh, my water broke. I rolled off onto the floor, and rested alternating with writhing my head in Kevin’s lap for the next couple of contractions.
Then, for me, things got really intense. It seemed like if I wasn’t pushing, I was contracting in the front and I couldn’t get away from the all consuming force of the birth. I roared. I brayed. I thought to myself, “Boy, I can really let go and get primal!” I grunted and roared some more.
It seemed like it never stopped until finally I felt the head come out, I got to pause, then I pushed out the rest of the baby, heard my mom exclaim “It’s a boy!” and at 4:20 we met our son.
He weighed in at 7 pounds 12 ounces, measured 21 inches, and features a perfectly round head of dark hair, eyes that will melt your heart, great suckling instincts, a dolphin rivaling range of squeaks and skin so soft you can barely feel it. Aviana was intently watching the entire thing. She was enthralled with the entire process and loved being part of welcoming Baby D. His name is Denton Leroyce. Denton, we just liked, Leroyce is my dad’s name with a ce added for originality and to make it sound like Kevin’s mom’s name to boot.
We are so thankful for our precious gift from God.
*This story will be continued, as I had some pretty severe complications after the birth.*
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