|the only picture of me in labour, mid contraction|
|just arrived! you can see the caul on the towel behind her head|
|meeting her Nana and brothers and sister for the first time|
|our wonderful midwife|
|Garry cutting the cord|
|first snuggles with daddy|
|being weighed all 9lb 10 oz of her.|
Wow, it is over 3 weeks since Ena arrived into our lives and I want to write our birth story before I forget all of the details.
The pregnancy was a long one. Luckily I felt so great all the way through, right through the due date and through 8 days of being over-due. I won't go into all of the pre-birth details, but suffice to say I was very ready for her to arrive 10 days before it finally happened.
As is my usual pattern I was looking at going into hospital for a scan. I knew that I was so ready to have the baby that if we went into hospital they would never have let me out again to birth at home, being nervous about the water levels being low etc, which I was sure they would be and also the speed at which I deliver.
The night before I was quite upset, trying to get my head around the fact that we were not going to birth this baby at home and trying to come to terms with all of the logistics and organising going into hospital would take.
I woke the following morning with a sinking heart. The alarm had gone off to wake us up for school at 6.50am. No baby and no signs of labour starting. I got up and went to the loo then got back into bed for 10 minutes. In bed I turned over and as I did I felt a 'clunk' and thought 'That's my waters'. As I thought this I felt a low wave of contraction beginning. I got up again and went back to the bathroom to clean up a little. As I did that I felt another strong, deep contraction. It brought tears to my eyes; tears of relief that I was finally in labour (at home) and also tears of fear (oh gosh this is going to hurt).
Garry saw these emotions and I told him I was in labour he hopped out of bed and started organising. Bringing the boxes, sheets and blankets that we would need for the birth into the bedroom.
I remember wandering around our room and looking for something to wear. I always seem to have this issue in labour trying to find the right thing to wear. I tried on pyjamas and a couple of t-shirts which just didn't feel right and I ended up wearing one of my best dresses (go figure...maybe next time I will labour in a ball gown...who knows!)
At this point I took some rescue remedy and aconite (a homeopathic remedy for fear and fast birth) and called our midwife. I don't really remember the conversation, and I think I just hung up as another contraction took hold.
Garry took the phone and went to call our friend to see if she would come and get the kids and have them for the day instead of us worrying about getting them to school.
At this point I felt a huge urge to push. I just couldn't believe it, that I needed to push already! I called for Garry and he came running. I don't know what I said to him, but I do remember telling him not to touch me at all. I stood at the end of the bed and worked with my body, allowing our baby to come out into the world and into her daddy's arms.
I feel almost like Garry would be better to write this part as I don't remember much of it and he had a much more interesting experience, but he watched our baby emerge, with the membrane still intact. So he alone had the experience of seeing what she looked like in the womb. He guided our baby out into his arms and told me it was a little girl (which of course I didn't really believe as I was so sure I was having a boy, so I made him check again). He passed her to me, she still had the caul over her face and I brushed it away from her face and she took her first breath and started to cry and she was born.
Our dear darling daughter.
She was born at 7.15am, 15 minutes after my waters broke and I had the first contraction.
We made a little nest on the floor of towels and blankets and I sat there with her wrapped in towels. The cord was still attached so I made sure everything was covered well before the kids and Nana came in to meet her.
We sat talking and cooing over her and we told them her name.
Ena Moira Barrett.
And none of us could believe she was finally here and that she was as perfect as she is.
We called the midwife to let her know and we called my mum too. Then the kids said goodbye and went off with our friend for the day.
When the midwives arrived we had tea and told the story of Ena's birth for the first time.
Garry cut Ena's cord and held her next to his heart.
Shortly afterwards I put her to the breast and with one contraction I delivered the placenta.
Then Ena was checked and weighed and dressed and I was checked and made comfortable in our bed. The midwives left and we had the most beautiful day snuggled in bed, the rain falling softly from the grey sky outside. The house was quiet and peaceful. It was a perfect start to our life with Ena.
It was like a dance her birth, it was so perfect and so calm and peaceful. It was the most special experience Garry and I could share; birthing our daughter, together, in our own way, as a team. It was so special that the children and her Nana got to meet her so soon after she was born, that they heard me birthing her and heard her first cry.
It was so special and she is so special.
Our perfect little girl, calm and peaceful and perfectly, perfectly her.