My midwives were busy getting things set up, and Patti recognized that labor was progressing very rapidly and suggested I get into the birth tub. I couldn't believe things were going fast enough that it was time to get in the tub, as I wanted to wait until the end to use it for pain relief. Unbeknownst to me, I think they wanted me in the tub because I was moving past the point of needing it for just pain relief. Sitting in the tub hurt because no one could get pressure on my back, so I sat spread on my knees with my arms hanging over the edge, and it was perfect.
My throat was raw from screaming through contractions and my body was starting to get shakey. My husband had someone grab a few honey sticks from the kitchen and fed those to me to give me a boost of energy. The window was open and the storm outside was blowing, which for some reason was very calming to me. My doula grounded me, relaxed me, reminded me to take healing and restorative breaths down to my baby in between contractions and pushing. My husband helped provide the comfort and motivation. I felt safe knowing my midwives were there behind me, sneaking in to listen to baby's heartbeat, waiting for her to safely come into the world. I could already see my baby as here, my job accomplished. I never had doubt or fear that my body wouldn't do this...I could feel her and knew she was coming.
Everyone finished cleaning up and was out of our home by 10:30 p.m. I was exhausted to the core. We got nestled into bed and the lights started to flicker and the power went out just as we were closing our eyes. What an ironic twist of fate! We are very grateful the storm wasn't raging so hard when Ellie was born...I can't imagine giving birth by candlelight! Ha! Justin swaddled up Ellie and held her in his arms all night so I could sleep. We woke up around 3 so I could nurse her again (and the power was back on) and Justin needed to take our vitals and record them, and then we were back to sleep until 7. I mentioned this in part one of our story, but it was so relaxing to be home and get all that much needed sleep with no one coming in all night to take our daughter anywhere, check vitals all night, or disturb the special time. I woke up in the morning rested and in complete awe and disbelief that I had just birthed this beautiful little soul just the night before.
*The photos from our birth are deeply private and personal, and I do not share them lightly. I have chosen to keep many of the images just for us, including the very raw and highly emotional seconds captured just as Ellie was being born and lifted out of the water. The photos featured here are copyright. You may not copy, distribute, or steal them.* All photos taken by the magnificent Katy Leet Photography, and Patti Ramos (both amazing doulas and birth photographers!)
Part One (Why home birth was right for us)
Part Two (Early Labor)