At 40 weeks, three days, I knew that we would have a baby the next day. Coincidentally, that was the exact same time I started labor with our first child. Knowing we wouldn’t have much time to bake in the next weeks – something my son loved to do, we decided to make cookies. We made up a double batch of oatmeal cookies, since oats help with milk supply.
My husband called to tell me he was on his way home. I told him we would have a baby the next day, a Saturday. We had planned to have my father-in-law help us haul some wood for us to use to make an art table and play kitchen for gifts. Since we wanted an uninterrupted babymoon, we decided my husband should call his father and see if he could come help us that evening.
That night I was out installing the second car seat while our two year old pretended to drive the car when my in-laws pulled up. My husband and his father left to get the wood while my son and I entertained my mother-in-law. When they came back, we all sat in the kitchen enjoying the oatmeal cookies and caffeine free iced tea I had made earlier in the day. His parents left, never realizing that I was having contractions.
We played for the rest of the evening. Around 11:30 PM, my husband asked what we should do. I said that since everyone was tired, I thought we should go to bed. I snuggled with my son, and he went to sleep very quickly. I was aware of having contractions through the night, but for the most part I slept. There was a huge thunderstorm that night. I got up around 3 AM to the sound of hail. I padded out to the kitchen and looked out on the deck to see quite a bit piling up, thinking what a wonderful story that would be to tell the baby later on.
Around 6:30 AM, laying in bed was no longer comfortable. I went into the bathroom to draw a warm bath and soak for a bit. The running water woke my husband and he came in to see how I was. We sat there, me in the tub, him on a stool, holding hands and kissing. We spoke of all sorts of things. Intimacy isn’t always physical; it’s about sharing with someone you love.
My son woke up around 9:30 AM, and came in to see me. I suggested to my husband that they go get donuts as a special treat and some father-son bonding. He asked if there was time, and I assured him that there was.
They came back, a bag of donuts proudly carried my my son. My husband brought me some ice water with a straw. What is it about ice water with a straw that I love in labor? I was occasionally getting in the tub, but mainly I wanted to be on the bed. My guys headed downstairs to play and would check in from time to time.
At some point, I started visualizing a white flower opening to reveal a baby inside during contractions. I don’t know where that image came from, but it seemed to be important for this baby. Around noon, I found myself chanting, “Let my body do what it needs to do” during contractions. My husband and son came in around 12:30 and asked what I needed. I told them to stay close because the baby would be here soon.
They went and got drinks and then sat on the bed. It irked me at the time. I had said to stay close, not sit there and watch me. I had just enough time to think that before my body decided it wanted to push. I reached down and felt the baby’s head was coming, and my water broke as the head was on its way out. I birthed the head in a half back bend, then flipped so that I was on my hands and knees. I reached down and between my legs and caught my precious baby, as she let out a wail to tell me she was not happy about being cold. I brought her up to me and she immediately quieted. A girl. She was born at 12:38 PM on 18 September 2004, weighing 7 pounds, 11 ounces and measuring 20 ½ inches. It was a good thing my husband decided to stay in the room, otherwise he might have missed the birth of his daughter.
I took my new baby and went and sat in the nice warm tub, which she seemed to appreciate. My husband explained to our son that this bath was just for Mommy and the baby, as he was all set to strip and join in. Our new daughter was busy looking around. I brought her up to nurse and my son was not happy about that. He tried to keep her from nursing until I explained that the baby needed Mommy, too. Then he tried to make her nurse.
We waited until after the cord had stopped pulsing to cut it. The placenta still hadn’t come out, so we went and curled up on the bed for a while. Four hours after her birth, I went in the bathroom and felt the need to push. The placenta came out and we put it in the freezer to plant with a tree.