I am strong because I labored for 45 hours and pushed for 2.5 hours in the comfort of my own home with my husband and midwives, only to be transferred to the hospital because of a swollen cervix. I am strong because the doctors considered me a ‘trauma patient’ in need of a c-section, and I calmly declined asking for an epidural, some sleep, and time to push my little girl out naturally. I had to sign paperwork declining advice for a cesarean.
I am strong because I accepted medical intervention when I needed it, even though it was not part of my birth plan, and I trusted my body. After the epidural, and some sleep my daughter was born perfectly healthy. The doctor did not let the cord stop pulsating before it was cut, they did not put my baby immediately on my chest, and I got hassled about declining the Hep shot and eye ointment. I am strong for fighting for what was best for my beautiful baby girl and me.
19 months later, I am strong because I did not let my first birth experience affect my second. I am strong because I listened to my body, and I labored at home as long as possible. I was blessed with a fast second delivery at a birth center with the support of my husband, midwife, doula and nurse. After a delicious dinner at my parents house (braised short ribs and mashed potatoes) and breathing deeply between bites because my contractions were so strong, I arrived at the birth center at 11:30pm. My baby boy was born at 1:18am with his cord wrapped around his neck twice and his body twice. It was the longest cord my midwife had seen, and after she unwound him he made all the perfect new baby sounds. I am blessed to have the birth experience of my dreams, and I am strong for making it real.
The only one I have of myself and Lorelei on the day she was born. We were so excited about being parents that we forgot to take pictures!!
[My son, Maximus. He is strong and mighty!] (Photography by Teresa Poole)
[Just because baby feet are too cute!] (Photography by Teresa Poole)