I remember this day. It would be May 5, 2010, the morning after giving birth to my 5th child. It was a difficult birth, technically a homebirth, but was at my midwife's house. The baby was a face presentation with "the shortest cord my midwife had ever seen" wrapped twice around her neck. The midwife put both hands inside me to protect her from injurying her neck on the way out. It was quite uncomfortable. Gabrielle (my darling first born who is now a grown woman and a doula) was such amazing support. I told her that night I thought she should be a midwife someday, to which she disagreed though I insisted she would make an amazing one. She begins midwifery school this Winter. She has always been there for me during the difficult times. Supporting her mamma in any way she can. When we finally got home after a VERY rough, but very fast birth (I think we were at the midwife's a total of 3 hours). I was beyond exhausted. The older siblings met the new baby, and I was in such a daze wanting sleep, rest, and quiet more than anything in the world. It was different from all my other births where I just wanted to stare in awe at my newborn for the first 24 hours. Not that I wasn't in awe of her, I just needed rest. I hadn't slept more than an hour at a time in days (it had been rough for several days before she was born). I needed sleep so bad... I was so glad that this little human that had been keeping me awake for DAYS inside of me, was finally out. Daddy could hold her and keep her warm. She kept getting cold... newborns are like that sometimes and have a hard time keeping their temperature up. This is why hospitals have warmers and contraptions. Daddy was her warmer. He stayed lightly asleep (mostly awake but dozy) for hours holding his newborn daughter on his chest, keeping her warm, and letting me rest. He was honored and delighted to have such an important role. To spend her first night on this earth with her on his chest. Feeling her first breaths against his skin. Letting her take in his scent and know that he was home for her. I thought it was precious and it made me fall more in love with him than ever... but mostly I thought it was nice to be able to sleep and actually have the burden of the growing human NOT rely on me for a few hours, because I knew it wouldn't be long until she would be hungry and need me every few hours for months to come. I woke up that first morning after I think 4 hours of solid sleep. It was absolute bliss. I looked over and this is what I saw. I grabbed my cell phone next to my bed and snapped this picture before anyone woke up and the moment was lost. This is what I woke up to the morning after giving birth. This is what I wouldn't trade for anything. One of the most peaceful, joyful, and complete moments of my life.
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