Sage’s Birth Story

August 7, 2017 3:32am
The absolute best, most miraculous, day of my life. My daughter was welcomed into this dimension of love and light. I keep reliving her delivery & it was remarkable,
crazy,
confusing,
painful,
challenging,
enlightening,
and rewarding, all in one.
I give thanks to my body, for creating our perfect girl and providing a safe space for her. Then allowing her to pass gently yet forcefully here. And to God, ultimate gratefulness. He never left my side, ever.

I had been having Braxton hicks on Monday July 31. Since that day, they became more frequent and regular. They were soft and cute. On Saturday night around 11pm, they became deeper. More isolated in my back, still dull-ish, (in comparison to the ones before her birth) but they did not allow me to sleep. Reaching 3-5 mins apart. Laying down was difficult, I made a lot of noise to get through them. Some even made me throw up from the intensity. Oooooohs & ahhhhhs. Pinching, twinging and aches all around my lumbar spine and pelvis is the best way I could describe it. Each one took my breath away. These died down around 7:30am the next morning. They spread out to about 11 minutes apart for a large part of the day, I was wondering why it was stalling.

Her position.

I couldn’t feel her bum in my belly like normal, only her limbs. She was in the posterior which means back labor. Her spine on my spine; not the ideal anterior position. So I began researching techniques and moved to get this progressing. Lots of birth ball hip circles, all fours, pelvic tilts, warm baths, and swaying. Sunday night around 7pm, they returned to their precious frequency. This time faster than before. We knew it was time. I was exhausted and becoming discouraged that it was prodromal labor.

Dan quickly packed and got the jeep ready for our hour and a half drive to the birth center. Classical music helped and paying attention to my breath. We arrived around 10:00pm. Ann welcomed us with hugs and we settled into the birth suite. My dad flew in from FL moments later and his presence there soothed me greatly, although I couldn’t vocalize it. She checked my vitals and as I laid down for her to check my cervix, my water broke. So much fluid, it was super warm. It was actually happening! I was 3cm dilated and very thinned out. From this moment it came full throttle. Intensity ramped up. Just when I thought contractions couldn’t hurt any worse, they did. I found myself on the toilet, in the dark bathroom alone (I asked for privacy). It’s so interesting how a laboring woman prefers this, so primal and animalistic. I threw up several times during surges. Letting out loud, deep moans every time one peaked. Deep breaths helped. We must have been there a couple hours and Theresa (another midwife) said things were moving very quickly by my behavior.

While in a challenging time through the pains, I heard an ambulance arrive for the woman laboring across the hall. This scared me. I suddenly needed to leave. I got stuck. Needed pain relief. An epidural. I told Dan this (prior to this day I told him to tell me no, no matter what, as I know this is usually a brief thought and baby comes shortly after this point of labor.) He encouraged me to seek other options, several times. As I begged, he helped to get me nitrous oxide, which did take the edge off but also left me a little “buzzed” feeling which was confusing. He helped me get in a warm bath for comfort but this position was hard to enjoy through back labor. He lastly suggested we check my cervix to see how I’m progressing. I was 5.5cm. How discouraging for me to hear (at the time). I was frank at this point that I wanted to go to the hospital, I couldn’t do this I felt. Longest 10 minute car ride of my life.

I couldn’t walk through each contraction, and I wasn’t getting rest in between. The wheel chair ride to L&D is a blur. I had to go deep into myself to not yell down the halls; breath was so so important looking back now. I got undressed somehow and into bed. They tried six times to get an IV in me to no avail, I had thrown up too much. The contraction intensity immediately turned into the urge to bear down. All energy I felt in my body flowed downward, intense but relieving.My torso wanted to tighten, my lungs wanted to exhale fully, my voice wanted to groan loudly and deeply, and baby wanted to meet us. Teresa checked me again, I was 9.5 cm. She told me to push and do what felt good, I was going to be meeting my baby girl soon. No time for an IV, epidural or pain medicine. I had a great birth team surrounding me, encouraging me with every push.

Dan was amazing at this point, holding my leg and breathing with me.
Pushing felt so good, like taking a big poo :o, with a better reward hehe. I gripped so hard on the railing as I was laying on my side; squeezing and breathing downward. I did this for 30 minutes. A nurse said “wow look at all that dark hair!”, I remember thinking 😲 what?! I was sure she’d be bald! The craziest part was the ring of fire. Super intense sensation! Dan was ecstatic next to me reminding me how great I was doing and how soon we’d meet Sage!

Moments later she was on my sternum. Warm and wet and vernixy and perfect. I was flooded with emotion, crying, laughing, so high, so in love. Pure ecstasy. She was beautiful, I dreamed of this moment. I did it. Dan and I had tears in our eyes. Disbelief and awe. So much going on around me but I couldn’t see or hear anything except her. Her crying and breathing was so amazing. Words cannot describe this feeling, not even close. I thanked God. I am forever changed and forever grateful.

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Coming into myself; Third Trimester Confession

This week marks the third trimester. It also marks the week (27) that I’ve stepped back into myself.

Settling in. Creating a new nest; far, far away from my old home. It feels good to ground myself here.

I feel the need to be painfully honest here, to vent, to unveil. The day we found out I was pregnant set off a whirlwind of intense, difficult events thereafter. We were very surprised at the news. There are a ton of mixed emotions coming with an unplanned pregnancy.

What about school?

What about work?

How can I raise a child?

Are we ready?

Am I too young?

What about my body?

The list goes on. Elation, panic, anxiety, fear, worry, excitement. 10 months is an ironically, good amount of time to come to accept these emotions, to understand and embrace them.

Shortly after this news, more news followed. A few friends and myself found ourselves facing legal matters. A close friend of ours became frightening and threatening. He unexpectedly crept into our lives, bought our trust, and then panicked. To make a very long story short, he ended up being taken into custody with serious charges and is currently detained with mental health therapy. I pray for this man daily. I felt naive, defeated, scared, in danger, paranoid, depressed. Whilse carrying child, I felt a strong urge to run. To move, far, far away. So Dan and I, moved North, where I thought we could be safe. For a little at least.

Our old friend at this point, was released onto house arrest. Which he broke and started North, miles from where we were. More fear struck me. I needed to protect myself, my partner, and my unborn child. We fled again. He turned himself back in, weeks later, and   I felt I was able to somewhat sleep again. This second residence wouldn’t be our last to welcome our sweet child into. Things didn’t work out finacnially there. We made another move, another temporary move, but one where we could be alone, supported, together, and more stable.

So this brings me to this moment in time, we just signed another lease to an adorable, affordable home where we will welcome our baby girl and hopefully be at for more than 6 months. The pieces seem to be coming together this week. And for that, I am immensely grateful. This has been a 27 week roller coaster, which happened to coincide with this pregnancy. I fell into a hole, I lost myself, a deep depression that I’ve felt once before; and now I’ve climbed out. The fog I felt that was constantly over me has cleared. I stopped writing, I stopped taking photos, I stopped moving, I stopped caring. This halt ends today. I reclaim my spirit and I’m excited to move forward.

Despite the roller coaster of the past few months, there are a few silver linings. Our little girl, of course. She will soon surprise, swoon, and challenge us in ways we cannot foresee. Dan and I’s relationship strength has proved to be strong and resilient. Our love has grown much deeper, as if I even knew that was possible. And I’ve learned to trust my intuition, at all costs. For it knows best, regardless of what my brain is screaming.

One pregnancy, four houses, three moves, and one life-threatening case later; and we are here. Home. Hand in hand. Surviving, loving, pushing forward, and growing.

Puberty Round 2

With Spring, came change.

Lots of change. Left a job, discovered new passions, developed new goals.

With the change in seasons, ironically came a change in hormones. Off of hormonal birth control for the longest I’ve ever been in 6 years. Strange to compare my cycle to seasonal patterns but it couldn’t be more fitting. A cold and harsh 6 year winter. The attitude towards my womanhood was much like the neglect a garden recelives during the cold months. Coming off of hormonal birth control feels like Spring, like a huge breath of fresh, crisp, Spring air.  Blossoming. Reborn. Warm. Excitement. Vibrant. Alive.

I’ve made this decision on account of a lot of factors.

  1. I didn’t feel like myself. I knew deep down what the mock hormones were doing. They cause you to feel things you don’t actually feel and vice versa. Distinctly recall the exact day/week I would feel allotted feelings on different pills. I know girls can relate to this feeling of “not being all there”, hyper sensitivity, lethargy, or numbness I am describing.
  2. Research. I cannot unlearn the horrors I’ve learned about hormonal Birth Control.
  3. Fertility Awareness Method. It’s been my first full month charting and it’s amazing. (Will discuss this in another post.)
  4. Loss of libido. Lost her about 3 years ago, not completely, fortunately. But now, rediscovered.
  5. Asking questions. All the questions I should’ve asked years ago or perhaps should have been brought to my awareness when I was an adolescent getting on the pill.
  6. Taking a more holistic approach to health & well-being.

Today, I got my first real period back. It’s been exciting. Almost seems silly to be this excited for something I previously dreaded and shunned every month since I was 12. This time was different. This time I welcomed her with open arms. The main difference this time was my entire outlook. The cramps hurt less, the flow less annoying, the bloating came & left quickly. By hurt less, I mean hurt the same but I was more mentally accepting and graceful towards them. I allowed my cycle to feel what it needed to feel. I allowed my body to talk to me and rest when I needed rest. My gentle, calm & nurturing perspective towards my cycle made all the difference. Embrace the miraculous gift we’ve been given, nature is preparing you each month to bring life into this world. What an incredible, pretty bad ass phenomenon occurring within us.

I’ve written these lovely truths to speak aloud during the menstrual phase. Print them, write them, rehearse them, meditate on them, feel them fully. Feel free to add more in comments, I’d love to hear ideas! I’m eager to understand more about this entire process throughout the different phases as well.

 

Period Affirmations

I will be patient with my menstrual cycle.

I accept what she brings in all her different ways.

I understand my body is working magic within me.

I will nourish my body with wholesome foods.

I will listen closely to my womanhood.

I embrace my cycle.