In those final, unimaginable moments of pushing, my son rubbed my back and watched as my husband caught our little girl. She was finally there. We became a family of four that morning, together.
Waves of Labor: A Birth Story
This blog was contributed by one of our clients, Sarah Conner, in Wheat Ridge, Colorado. Here’s her story that centers around the waves of labor.
I think of labor in terms of waves. The calm, even voice of my doula whispering to let it take me up, and then let it let me go. Breathe. Twelve hours of peaceful, quiet, marathon-like labor at home. A quick drive to the hospital. Then, a frantic and overwhelming flurry of motion and people. And then…he was there.
Many things come to mind when I reflect on my first birth, however, if I had to sum it up it would be something like this. First, my body, my mind, my soul, and my being are fully capable of bringing life into this world, and that is a tremendous blessing! Second, I experienced what I can only describe as a disconnect at the hospital. Between me and the resident and attending, the nurses, the volunteers, the medical assistants, the billing representatives, all of the people and papers were incredibly distracting. I was uncomfortable in the sterile room where holding and keeping and sleeping with my new little peanut was not necessarily the norm and not encouraged. I was riding so incredibly high from the whole experience, and the hospital setting did not reciprocate or nurture me, as a new mom.
Baby+Company opened in Wheat Ridge the summer before my daughter was born. From the first time I called, the different model of care was apparent. Molly and Joanna were an absolute pleasure to work with. They made it possible for me to deliver there, and for that, I am forever grateful. Simply stated, I love Baby+Company. The physical space is so conducive to the energy I was so desperately trying to maintain throughout my pregnancy. The entire staff is totally devoted to making the journey to motherhood empowering, gentle, exciting, safe, and graceful. The women there made me feel confident and excited about labor and becoming a mother of two. The relationships were easy, I felt safe and like we were in good hands. My husband (who was in his fourth year of med school), completely agreed.
The waves came again and after a quick drive across town at 2 am, my husband and I arrived at Baby+Company. Susan had spent the night there after an earlier phone call I had made saying that things felt “different.” Seriously, she spent the night. The rest of the team arrived shortly after we did. The feeling in that center, in the early morning hours were incredibly conducive to my labor progressing. The tub, the suspended sheet, the ball, a little bit of vomit all over my husband, the laughs and tears and the almost-unbearable feeling of, well, waves. I was tired until my own mother and my son arrived. We had prepped our 2 ½ year old in hopes that he could be present when his sister was born. He came wearing his ski gloves because in all the videos we had shown him, the midwives had been wearing gloves. His presence allowed for a well of energy that I didn’t know I had. In those final, unimaginable moments of pushing, my son rubbed my back and watched as my husband caught our little girl. She was finally there. We became a family of four that morning, together. The relationship between my son and daughter is something I wasn’t prepared for, or hadn’t really thought too much about rather. Watching the two of them together makes my heart burst and I know the fact that my son was there when she was born, has had a lot to do with that.
After she was born the room became even more quiet and peaceful than it had been during labor. The care we both received was quiet and sweet and gentle, and perfect. And then we were driving home, nine hours after arriving.
I never lost my appetite. I never felt ‘sick.’ The 48 hour visit was so lovely. The continuum of care from those women has made all the difference. I’m an advocate for empowered and informed moms, regardless of the birth experience. Fear and pain and all the other words that so many people associate with labor have stolen the narrative. Yes those feelings are real, but the other ones, oh the other ones. Strong, powerful, graceful, full, empowered, beautiful, capable, mighty. These are the words that should not only describe moms in labor, but women becoming mothers. Imagine a world where all moms received the incredible, empowering support through labor to then begin the adventure of being a mother.
I am so lucky to have had the experience I did at Baby+Company, I know this. I know my experience is not possible for everyone, or not desirable for everyone. But, the level of care I received there, when I was pregnant, during labor and beyond, has directly impacted my family in such a positive way.