December 18, 2017
I remember the first time I saw this mom in labor.
It was Christmas time in 2014 (click here to read that birth story). I had literally never seen someone so peaceful and calm in labor.
She barely made a noise, laughed between contractions, and made sure her birth team felt comfortable and welcome. (At my homebirth in 2013, I was legit screaming and literally biting my husband, so this was all new to me 😉 )
Y’all this birth was no different for this sweet mama.
Whitney had been dealing with “stop-and-go” labor pattern all morning…. sometimes contractions would be 5 minutes apart, and then 45 minutes would go by with not one contraction.
She was ready to get things moving, and the midwife insisted several times that she wanted to come see her. She lives over an hour away and this mom was worried she’d be a “bother” to her birth team (PS yall… you’re never a bother to your birth team. BUT I totally get the feeling).
Finally around 3pm-ish, Whitney agreed to the midwife coming. Once I heard this was happening, I told the birth team “Y’all watch, she’ll be like 7cm or something.”
The midwife arrived and asked if Whitney would want to check dilation. She really did not, because she didn’t want to hear how much longer she’d have to deal with these contractions…
“I was up and pacing, squatting, lunging, crawling, anything to get consistent. I was really glad to see her (midwife) even though I felt guilty to make her come all the way out here on a Sunday. We listened to baby who, not surprisingly, was content and low, just hanging out. She asked again if I wanted to check dilation. I agreed. When she checked her eyebrows raised and a big smile came, “Whitney, you are at a 7!” Nooooo waaaay! She then said, “I think I’m going to stick around.” She called the rest of the birth team, who were likely not surprised at that news. This wasn’t their first birth with me.”
I hate to say I told you so, you little sneaky mama you!
Big sister Lily was ready to be a big helper! Ready to go with her rainbow leggings on.
You know things are serious when the hair gets pulled up! 😏
I’ll never forget watching big sister see her mama in labor. She saw normal, healthy birth. There was no fear, everyone was calm and joyfully waiting to meet her sister.
“Labor/birth isn’t a scary thing for me, it’s not excruciating, it’s not dreadful, my thoughts are that your body is working for a purpose. It just knows what to do. I don’t actually push, my body just does it, and I let my body just do what it needs to do.”
“Feeling baby Iris move lower and lower, knowing what was to come. I leaned forward and had a big contraction, and Iris partly entered the world. Deep breath, Dawn said. And I waited. Another contraction and her shoulders were out, deep breath again, and one final contraction at 7:03 pm Iris was born! Like lighting a candle, her sweetness filled the room with warmth.”
No concern, no fear, no anxiety. Only pure joy to finally see her sweet face.
Those sweet little chipped rainbow fingernails and unicorn/rainbow pjs. Hi little sis <3
Rainbow footprints for this long awaited rainbow baby!
Big brothers were itching to get into the house and see her!
When I’m asked to take a photo as a part of the birth team, my heart goes 😍 😍
Whitney & Ryan – I don’t think “honor” and “privilege” are the right words to describe getting to photograph Iris’ birth. It seems like yesterday we were anxiously awaiting that 12 week mark… praying and praying for a healthy baby. I vividly remember tears welling up in my eyes when you announced this baby is a GIRL. I’m thrilled I’ve been able to watch your sweet family grow through my lens and also as a friend. Love you guys <3