this woman's work - day five

Four births….all with completely different stories.

*First birth – my plan was for a natural birth with midwives in the beautiful birthing center at the hospital. We had 24 hours of labor, never dilating fully, an epidural, c-section, and a big Gabriel Joseph was born. It all went so fast and I was so glad he was safe, but at a loss as to what had happened. Nobody could really explain.

*Second birth – we’re in New Pittsburgh town, very far away with a really big belly. I had a midwife helping me with a planned VBAC (Vaginal Birth after Cesarean). My mom flew in hours before I left for the hospital. I had little contractions all night and left for the hospital in the morning. I labored all day and my midwife said I could do it. I felt panicked. “What if I can’t do it? What if I just can’t birth a baby?” It was almost dinner time and I pushed out my very own, only baby girl, Faith Astoria, 10 lbs. 5 oz.Hmmmm… bigger than my first baby, yet she came out the right way. I was so empowered that I could do this.

*Third birth – New Pasco town, a new house, new confidence, perfect pregnancy, wonderful midwife, wonderful support, short labor, warm quiet home, soothing tub.A couple of pushes and Asher Bird was in my arms.
Incredible. I’d never gotten to hold my baby immediately like that. We just stared at each other for a couple of minutes. He didn’t make a sound. He was who he is now. I was on cloud nine. I knew this was a God-given ability.
asher bird {born at home} september 16, 2005

*Fourth birth – This was a harder pregnancy, harder birth and harder baby. None of my births have been “cookie cutter.” I’m grateful for the adventure though. Again, my warm house, wonderful midwives, supportive husband. In the early, early morning, Elias River finally came. He was my “are you really willing to work for this baby? Do you really want to do what God wants, baby? Do you believe children are worth giving everything for baby?”He was here.I cried, like real baby sobs. It was hard, but everything was ok.
elias river {born at home} march 30, 2008

These births, this process, has felt like progression in my life. I don’t think I could be who I am today without these experiences. I can understand now why God makes it this way and why it’s so hard and why it’s so painful. It was never supposed to be easy. It’s not bad pain, like breaking your leg. It’s good. It’s “are you willing to do this?” pain.It’s like climbing a mountain, your feet have blisters, your whole body hurts, you need air, you need water, but you still keep going.

I have a way higher appreciation for my children now and realize how important they are. It took miracles for them to come to me and God wants me to remember that for their whole lives. I feel like I can do just about anything in life now if I can do the hardest thing God gave me to do and I feel more confident. I’m so glad I believed in my ability and found what I wanted. All of my births were wonderful because I got my children.

Home birth has come to mean different things to me. The more I’ve though about it and researched it, it just seems normal. The hospital seems like the place you go when you have problems, right? My memories of homebirth are warmth, closeness, only people I trust around me, peace, spiritual life, and empowerment.
There’s definitely something about being in your comfort zone. I also remember it being the hardest thing I’ve ever done and painful. All four of my births have been very different which does leave it to be a little uncertain.I think some people are right for homebirth and some are not.Hopefully, EVERYONE takes the journey to find out what is best for them.
Love, Amelia