My second pregnancy was filled with a lot of unexpected events. Some events were challenging while others were exciting, but all of them were opportunities for growth. It really came as no surprise that as my pregnancy approached 40 weeks, a hurricane was also approaching!
During our appointment prior to the storm, we all agreed that the baby was indicating that he or she would arrive that weekend after the hurricane had passed. Over the next two days we checked in with Mary regularly and started to talk contingency plans should labor begin during the hurricane. After I hung up from our afternoon check in I started feeling irregular contractions. I decided to take a shower and to relax with some lavender essential oil. After the shower I headed down for dinner and noticed that the contractions were continuing to build in intensity. Soon hip squeezes by my husband were the only thing that was allowing me to continue to breathe through contractions.
Once I began toning, we knew it was time to call the Midwife and our doula! Our doula arrived first and we rode out several contractions together before I announced that I had a strong urge to push. She asked me to breathe through a few more contractions to confirm that urge. Meanwhile my husband began to inflate the birthing pool. Mary arrived and I heard my doula whisper “she’s ready”. A smile and a rush of excitement and relief overcame me. It was confirmed: the baby’s arrival was impending and I was listening to my body and taking its lead!
I told everyone that all I wanted was to get in the the tub as soon as possible. As I slipped into the warm, relaxing waters all the pressure I was experiencing melted away. After a station check, I began to push and breathe my baby down. Each push felt extremely effective and invigorating. As our baby crowned, I slowed down and took several deep breathes to allow my body and my baby to slowly emerge from me. About a minute later our world changed forever when we greeted our daughter Elizabeth! As the world outside was chaotic and stressful as the outer bands of the storm were approaching, we had our very unique calm before the storm: a beautiful, peaceful and happy home birth. We all enjoyed a slice of pumpkin pie and cheerfully celebrated our sweet Elizabeth and her birth day.