Monday, October 5, 2009

Bryce's Birth

If you are faint of heart or a man, you may want to run.
Here comes the Birth Story!

A few of you requested the story of Bryce's arrival; so for the sake of posterity (and because who doesn't love to tell her story?), here I record the events as I remember them from two weeks ago.


Plan A it was! I started labor in the evening - seven ish - just as I would have hoped if I had layed out the "perfect plan".

The children fed, tucked soundly into beds with yet the whole night ahead in which to labor; and I felt confident it could be done. It could all be accomplished before their sleepy eyes opened to reveal a new day with a new tiny sibling to welcome it with them!

My Great Guy made sure that all were sleeping soundly while I started in on the real work. It all progressed slowly but do-ably with contractions spaced none too regular. If I were in a hospital instead of home I would have felt under the gun to perform - to get things moving! but as it was, I knew my body would birth a baby with or without MY help, so I went along for the ride, and attempted to relax as best I could.

My beloved friend Mrs. Smith, and dear Dear friend Lauri showed up sometime around eleven o'clock along with three of Lauri's daughters who came as back-up for the children should they wake. All the gals were perfectly obliging to camp out in the living room to snooze while awaiting my summons.

After he was done with his chores for the evening, AJ joined me where I was hunkered down in my bedroom. First he sprinted through several books on the finer points of childbirth, then I generously allowed him to fall asleep on the bed while I tested the usability of my custom made birthing chair.
I had been thinking it would be nice to get through as much laboring as I could on my own, and I did.

After 2 am I felt pushy and thought I detected a bulging bag of waters (which hadn't yet broke), so I woke AJ and invited in Lauri and Mrs. Smith.
I kept thinking that the unbroken waters were holding up my progress so I once again sat on the birthing chair to enlist the aid of gravity and was not disappointed when with the next contraction it broke with some force!

After that it was all downhill - that is to say it was the hardest workout of the evening, but quickly over;-)
The next contraction brought the baby's head down, and I moved to the prepared bed on the floor.
I felt extremely lucid through the last leg of this labor - much more so than any before. I was able to reach down and feel my little fellas hair; his round "little(?)" head...

I saw him as he came out at last, and it wasn't long after that that AJ and I exclaimed in unison "It's a BOY!" (and I felt so much better! Whew!!)
I scooped him up and held him close. And held him, and held him, and held him...

My marvelous Great Guy, my husband AJ, delivered Bryce Endurance at 4:04 am on September 20th 2009. He tied off the umbilical cord which had completed pulsing withing minutes of Bryce's birth; He helped me deliver the placenta* and per the example of our favorite midwife Janice, he carefully noted the number of vessels in the umbilical cord, and inspected the placenta to make sure it was all in tact.

Bryce had a complete knot in his cord which I have heard is extremely unusual, but sister Susanna had one in her cord too, so two out of six doesn't seem so uncommon;-)

The rest is history.
I got to shower and climb into bed with my new little fellow (so luxurious!);
Lauri and her daughters scavenged my kitchen and somehow found enough ingredients to make a scrumptious quiche;
The children wandered in one at a time as they woke, and welcomed Bryce like they'd always known him and had been expecting him;
Mrs. Smith brought craft projects for my children and provided them with a regular holiday;
Mr. Smith came with the rest of their crew and played all day;
I just soaked it all in.

This event was a once in a life-time experience - even if the sixth time around.
It never grows old, and the baby is always new - perfect in every way. That smell... the new baby smell, Mmmm....
It was absolutely worth it! (and the birthing chair worked super!) ;-)

*I note these seemingly mundane details because it's easy to take the less-noble tasks of the nurse or midwife for granted! AJ manfully saw to all these duties without hesitation or complaint, and was gentle and clear of mind.
He was the perfect Midwife...husband.. ;-)


pam said...

Love the story. My husband is also my midwife. Has caught 10 of our 13! There is nothing like it.
(I do the prenatals, and such. I am a lay midwife, but I love it when daddy's do it.)
Sounds like the Lord has richly blessed your pregnancies and deliveries. Praise His name.

Momma Bug said...

The Lord has been ever so gracious with us, and we marvel every time we have another "uneventful" delivery, and a healthy child. I am nearly speechless!

Thank you for your encouraging words Pam - it's a select few who realize that birthing babies is not a medical event in most cases.


Lady Jess said...

Awwwww! What a "Great Guy"! Sounds like you've also got some great friends! ;) Congrats again again again again again AGAIN!

Morgan said...

I really, really want a homebirth, but our insurance will only cover a hospital birth. Maybe I could convince my husband to be the midwife?

Thanks for sharing your story! I love it and it makes me even more excited to meet my new baby!!

Shauna said...

I'm so glad plan A worked for you! For me it hasn't even been plan B or C - more like M or Q. Oh well, I only have two, maybe by the time I get to six I'll have one that goes according to "plan".
Give Bryce a snuggle for me.

Momma Bug said...

Dearest Shauna, I figure that if plan M or Q is what it takes to get a precious healthy baby in the end, that's about as good as any other plan.
I forget there are some ladies who go through all the work and have to give their little bundle back to the Lord before they get to enjoy the dear sweet moments we have been privileged with.

Of course I'll snuggle baby boy for you!! My pleasure! ;-)

Morgan, We had our first four at Feather River too. Both because of insurance and convenience.
I have to say that the experiences we had there were the next best thing to having babies at home!

Having the last two at home were even better and totally worth the 2,500 dollars (or whatever it was).

Bryce was less "expensive" of course since we didn't have a midwife, but that is not necessarily a mode of operation I would recommend;-)
There's a fine line between recognizing childbirth to be a normal occurrence seldom needing a doctors assistance; but... it is common sense to have knowledgeable hands available in case of hemorrhage or need of resuscitation. It's pretty frowned upon to go it solo on purpose in our culture.

Perhaps there will be more opportunities to try a homebirth? ;-)

Love to you dear friend!

princessmama said...

Beautiful story Analene:-) Thank you for sharing with us. It's so neat that A.J. got to deliver Bryce.

You are braver than I. Or maybe it's a matter of experience. With my history of difficult births and hemorrhaging I don't think I could be convinced to go without a couple of experienced midwives by my side. :-) I also like to have my hubby by my head while I'm laboring, he helps me not hyperventilate. But, I think he would find it really neat to deliver one of his babies. With a midwife handy... ;-)

I love hearing all kinds of experiences and preferences. It's so amazing the diversity God created in His children. What rich experiences in life we all have in our different situations.

Diane said...

So glad you wrote your story. Awesome to read and I can't wait to meet Bryce. Love and miss you.

Shauna said...

Please don't think I was complaining, 'Lene. I am so thankful, and quite honestly AMAZED that God has blessed me with two healthy little girls! I just find it humorous that I can THINK I have it all figured out, and God quickly reminds me who is truly in charge once again.

"In his heart a man plans his course, but the Lord determines his steps" -Proverbs 16:9

sonshinersmama said...

Oh I'm so happy to hear you had your baby..And that is so awesome that AJ caught him. It is a wonderful experience and I love having hubby be my midwife too..and he can chat with my midwife friends too :) Congrats! He is sooooo adorable. Enjoy your little bundle of boy..such fun!! Thanks for the pics..makes me miss everyone so much! Love Gretchen