Lydia's Birth Story
Baby Lydia’s birth story
Before I truly begin I must say, Lydia’s pregnancy was difficult. I was tested mentally and physically the entire 41+ weeks I carried her but I knew from the second we saw those two lines back on August 12, 2020 that I was going to do everything within my power to birth her at home. I worked through the malnutrition, low iron levels and everything else in between to get my body physically in the best place I could for myself and her. I also did loads of mental work so that my mindset was calm and clear to birth her into this world on my terms. Conquered fear after fear each week leading up to labor so that those past few weeks I was just plain ready. I never once faltered and thought maybe I couldn’t birth her at home because I knew my body, her body and God had a plan. I walked a similar path of many women who had done this before me and I was so lucky to have had a few of those special mamas cheering me on every step of the way. After the experiences I had during this pregnancy & birth, I truly believe uninterrupted birth should be shown more to normalize what once was. We need to see more of that & less birth trauma in our world. Women are powerful & birth is beautiful in every way.♥️
It’s hard to start this little story at 41+4 when I actually went into full blown labor because for weeks beforehand the prodromal type labor was on and off. It really kicked in around 37 weeks, that’s when I felt a shift in my body. I could tell although symptoms were minimal that my body was starting to prepare. For over a month my contractions stopped and stalled. The symptoms remained minimal and although I was starting to feel pressure from others regarding my “due date” I knew deep down she would arrive when SHE was ready. So I continued to do the work physically & mentally. Birth isn’t on our terms, if left up to our body’s devices like God intended birth to be it is on baby & God’s terms only. We are the vessels between the spiritual & human world. So by 40 weeks I took comfort in that, as well as my very skilled midwife I was seeing 2X a week at this point. Everything continued to look great and I continued to prepare for the day she decided to arrive.
Week 41 started just like the previous weeks with minimal symptoms and minor contractions. On May 4th I had another great midwife visit and was feeling good mentally. I’d already tried a few things to get labor going naturally but none worked so I had decided to just relax and surrender fully. By mid afternoon on the 4th I began seeing what I knew was my mucus plug beginning to detach. Contractions started kicking up a bit and my plug continued to release through the next day. I was out in the garden and playing with the boys almost all day. (Hence the knarly sunburn during labor 😂 always will be a laughing point in our family) By late afternoon on May 5th I knew labor was imminent. We ate dinner that night like normal as a family of four as I’d get up to sway through each contraction. My husband put the boys down for bed at 7 pm while I did some affirmations on my birth ball and relaxed. At this point my contractions were steady but tolerable. I called my midwife and our doulas while my husband began setting up the birth space.
As we waited for my doula to arrive my contractions started to spread back out again and lose their intensity so I started to worry. ♥️
Once my doula arrived she had me do a few deep squats. After just a few, contractions weren’t just back to normal they increased in intensity and frequency. It was roughly 8:45 pm by this point and my midwife was instructed to head our way! By the time she arrived I had gotten into the pool and was laboring well in there. I’d say about an hour into being in the tub I could no longer talk even in between contractions and was having to go deep in my mental prep I’d done to get through each wave. My midwife came in and said she was having a difficult time getting a grasp on where I might be labor wise because I was so quiet. (When I say I dig deep during each wave I truly DIG DEEP. I go to a place no one else is. I know I’m safe, I internally recite my affirmations and I give myself all I’ve got. My support system was great in allowing me space but also being there with gentle words of affirmations when they could see I needed an extra nudge. Just being there with me in the room is enough support for me as I worked through each surge.) at this time she asked if I wanted her to check me to give us an idea but she also offered I check myself if I wanted. I felt the urge to know so I reached down and although I questioned it at first I knew that my body was there. My cervix was gone and baby’s head was close.♥️
I worked through a few more waves and began feeling an intense urge to push I really couldn’t even stop my body from pushing itself so I tried to surrender. It was getting difficult and my midwife offered I get out of the tub. I was overwhelming scared for a moment but felt it was what I needed to do to really get baby out. By the time I made it to the edge of the bed I was able to push baby’s head out but felt like her body just wasn’t releasing. (Every birth story I read they described the head as the most difficult push but her body seemed to be stuck to me) turns out she was wedged by her shoulder but my midwife was able to help get her fully out and I felt that instant relief. She was here! At 12:04pm on May 6th 2021 I had birthed my baby at home, on my bed. Almost immediately after my contractions stopped completely and the placenta was not releasing for what felt like ages. We tried squats, changing positions, etc. Eventually I did have to get a little help from my midwife to release the placenta. Not the most fun but also felt 20x calmer and safer than I know it would have been in any hospital setting. (Come to find out, it had an anomaly of some sort which we think was holding it in there. Sorta wish we’d taken a picture before we froze it! ) I did also have to get a few stitches afterwards but the fact that I could calmly latch my baby and chat with my midwife in my own bed while doing so was mind blowing. The birth of our sweet girl was fast and intense but I wouldn’t have done it any other way. That night I stared at the tiny creation we’d made and felt so empowered from it all. THAT is how mamas should feel after birth. Loved, safe, empowered, strong & downright badass. ♥️
Photos by: Jerrica Lou Photography