July 2015 was the most interesting and humbling month my life. The 5th of July we met our little one.
The day was approaching when we would meet our little one. What was to be a day of redemption and joy came closer and closer. So different would this experience be from our experience with David and so it was.
Joy exuded in every way possible.
I awoke around 4 am to a small trickle. My water had broke and the birth of Audrey Cate was on the way. Excitedly I told Joe and then we fell back asleep. Sleep was something many loved ones had informed us that we needed. So we took the opportunity to sleep in. When we woke up that morning around 9 am we carried on with our day as normal except there was an overwhelming swelling of excitement and joy that I had never experienced before. So much had I longed for this day and we were quite positive I was in labor. We texted our midwife and doula just to double check if the signs were right and then took the morning to confirm if this was really happening. It was!
Around noon things had picked up. My mom came over to help me pack our hospital bag and spend some time with us. Pawpaw and Mawmaw were downstairs with my dad. All throughout the house you could smell the chicken and andouille gumbo simmering on low, while small contractions were starting to take place. We walked down the street dreaming about what our little one would look like and wondered when we would meet him or her. Finally around 4 pm, we were timing contractions as I walked the hall upstairs and would sit on our ball. We wanted to stay at home as long as we could. 5:15 pm we drove to the birthing center. So far the day had been going so smoothly, but soon enough things would get a little bumpy.
When I say the month of July was one of the most humbling I really mean it. I think every woman envisions meeting their little one a certain way. Ours looked like a healthy mama and a healthy baby which ultimately happened, but the means to that end did not happen in the way we had thought.
And that was okay.
I wanted immediate skin to skin, delayed cord clamping, and a water birth, none of which were able to happen but in the moment none of that mattered. What mattered was this beautiful moment happening before our eyes; the birth of our daughter. How often the Lord gives us desires and meets them while He directs the path. He was in total control of July 5th 2015 not me and that was freeing.
Our time in the birthing suite will always be regarded as special. Things were peaceful, focused, and calm. Our staff was literally amazing. Our Midwife, Mel, had the most experience I had ever heard of and had the most respectful bedside manner. Joe and Krista (our doula, from Baby Love Doulas) were such a great support team. I could not have achieved a natural unmediated birth without their love and guidance. Things continued to progress at a steady pace, and the baby looked great on the monitor. However I had started bleeding.
This was concerning for Midwife Mel and Krista yet the atmosphere had not changed. We remained focused and calm but I was starting to experience more pain as the contractions were coming fast and strong. I wanted to get in the tub. The first unexpected news came, I couldn't get in. Instead we spent an hour or so in the shower. I was thankful for that. Later we found out the reason behind why. I was experiencing a placental abruption (a rare serious pregnancy complication in which the placenta detaches from the womb before delivery, potentially depriving the baby of oxygen and nutrience. Fewer than 200,000 cases per year. Usually an immediate c-section is enforced.) Thankfully due to our location, staff, and determination, that wasn't enforced. God was near in protecting our baby and keeping my mind and heart focused on bringing her into the world.
The crazy thing was, Joe and I were not aware of the seriousness of what was going on. I honestly didn't find out until weeks later that was the cause of bleeding. That is how calm and collected the environment remained. The second unexpected news came, the baby had passed meconium before delivery so that meant they would immediately have to clear the baby out in case he or she had swallowed it. No immediate skin to skin. And No delayed cord clamping. Yet again in the midst of what could have been dissappointments the Lord was near and comforted me. I found myself saying Isaiah 26:3 "You will keep him in perfect peace the mind that is dependent on you for it is trusting in you." This was exactly what had to happen. I was at peace with how the day was going and so thrilled and happy to just hold our little baby.
When she came, everything lifted! We found out who she was and she was beautiful. So alert. So precious and treasured is this life. Our little Audrey Cate.
Even in the midst of things not going my way, He still granted such a wonderful birth experience. We were able to have a healthy baby and mama without medication or intervention. To have your child born is one of the most amazing feelings. My world changed that day. It was the most interesting, freeing and humbling day - to not be in control.