Mariah's Birth Story 2010
While my family and I were watching the Winter Olympics at my parents’ house I started to feel a different kind of sensation than I had felt before with the previous “pressure waves” (a term we use instead of “labor pains”). In between the women jumping off the ski jumps and the men bobsledding, I knew I was entering my own physical endurance event.
My mother noticed that I had to pause every once in a while and take some deep breaths and she asked me if I was feeling anything. I casually said, “Oh, not really”. After that evening’s Olympic events were over my husband, Lance, and I drove home to our small one bedroom apartment. As a surgical nurse I knew the mechanics and medical terminology of childbirth, but nothing is quite like the actual personal experience, especially for a first time mother. I did not feel that the sensation waves were frequent enough to inform my husband at that point. I wanted to see if I would be able to sleep so I just sat there for a few minutes thinking about it and then decided that tonight we were not going to get any sleep at all!
I informed Lance that the pressure waves were feeling stronger and were more frequent. He did not think that I was showing any significant change in my attitude or facial expressions but decided that he would time these waves by the clock and see if they had any pattern to them. To his surprise, they did. After about an hour or two the waves were progressing to every minute and a half, lasting about sixty to sixty-five seconds long.
I do not know what exactly caused me to feel an urgency to go to the hospital but I decided that if I was going to get to the hospital at all I should go while I could still somewhat walk to the car. These intense feelings were becoming stronger but were not painful. It reminded me of when I used to run long distances. During the run if I felt like giving up I realized it was because I was tired, not because I was in pain. These pressure wave sensations were much like running up a hill and then back down again.
Lance and I made it to the hospital which was only a few minutes away. It was the middle of the night and we walked in calm, collected and extremely relaxed. The nurses asked why I was there, and I said that I was in labor or that it was my birthing time, and they did not believe me. I leaned over every once in a while because I could not talk to them for longer than a minute at a time. They sent me to the room where they check expecting mothers. To their surprise, I was opened to 7.5 cm and was 100 percent thinned. The nurse quickly said that I was staying at the hospital and that she was calling my midwife.
Lance and I walked to the next birthing room and sat on the chair, and that is where I stayed basically until our daughter Mariah was crowning. During the birthing process I suggested to the nurses that instead of asking me about my pain level, it would be more effective to ask about my comfort level. Lance was most helpful. He was involved with the whole birth process and applied counter pressure to my knees and sacrum, or tailbone. My birth water released all over Lance and I appreciated him even more because of his dedication. Every moment that he was there made me feel like he was becoming the protector and provider I always knew he was.
After the release of water, I moved to the bed. Lance was there to hold my hand and support me the whole way. I knelt on my hands and knees upon the bed for a while and then switched positions to side-laying to give birth to Mariah. When I moved to my side the birth waves spread out and I did not know what was happening. I started to become scared and prayed. I thought, “Please let my birth waves continue to progress”. This was the moment when I needed God the most. I did not know what to do at this point and I knew that I was not in control with the outcome of my baby’s birth. At the same time this fear crept into my mind, another thought also came. My husband and I were co-creators with God. The term Heavenly Father and Heavenly Mother had a whole new meaning.
This quiet confidence came by the Spirit; and reminded me that we are all born with flesh, spirit, blood and water. What a most amazing and wonderful event to be part of! As I struggled to breathe deeply, I could see the look on my husband’s face. He was going to receive the baby just after she was born. His expressions showed awe, concern, delight, anxiety, anticipation as his eyes filled with tears of joy.
They say that seven is a “heavenly” number and Mariah’s numbers were full of sevens. She was born at 7:07 in the morning, weighing 7 pounds 7 ounces and was born on the 17th of the month.
The sound of Mariah’s first cry and small noises were the most pure and simple sound ever created. I felt wonderful! I held Mariah on my chest and looked into her eyes. She could see! She was awake and alert and beautiful! Lance and I did it together. We created this tiny, healthy baby girl and I gave birth to this perfect child! Handing Mariah to Lance I could see excitement and joy pouring out from his eyes. The moment I felt the spirit the most was when my husband held our little daughter, Mariah, in his strong and loving arms. At this moment I knew that the purpose of life is to bring life to others, to care for them, to teach them and to love them. This experience truly felt like a rite of passage, our own Olympic athletic event, one that transformed a regular man and woman into real, loving parents! Our prize was more than a gold medal. It was a sweet and perfect, beautiful baby girl!
Hello! My name is Linda. I am a Doula CD(DONA), Hypno-Doula, Childbirth Educator, Midwife Assistant and a Registered Nurse (RN) by profession.