04 May, 2013

(Re)learning to go with the flow

I am feeling so blessed as I sit here thinking about the day we had.  From the outside it probably didn't look like much.  Most of my day was spent on my living room couch, cuddling anyone who wanted to cuddle in between breaking up arguments as well as diving into the musings of a 6, 4, and 2 year old.  We read a couple books, watched some movies, had way too many snacks, and even played in the rain.  We generally lead a spontaneous, relaxing schedule but today, today was the it was the epitome of a true lazy Saturday.  Brandon had to work later than usual so around dinner time, the whining was starting to pick up, fights were getting a little more dramatic, and well, I needed to get out of my pajamas!  We all got bathed and dressed and decided to see a spur of the moment movie in the theater, something we RARELY get to do.  The kids were all really excited!!!  They all did awesome through the whole movie and we thought it was really funny and well done.

As we were walking out to the van, Analee noticed the park behind the theater.  Side track for just a moment...I get in a funk in the winter months.  We don't leave the house very often and my efforts to say YES more than I say no are really dampened when I'm in that funk.  Every.single.spring, as the sun begins shining and we get more and more fresh air, I have to sort of reteach myself to be spontaneous and energetic and to say yes.  Back to the park.  She saw it and kind of just gasped in excitement!  And when I said "Wanna go?" they all just stared at me in disbelief.  LOL  We jumped back out of the van and all RAN as fast as we could to the park.  It felt SO GOOD to say yes and just go.  It felt so good to watch them run ragged, to see Analee helping Charlie every time he got stuck somewhere, Brian leading Charlie by the hand.  I love that the game they chose to play, when the kids around them were playing tag, was "mom and dad".  I love how Analee and Brian held hands nearly the entire time and kept running up to their "baby" Charlie to love and kiss on him.  I love that they are best friends.

I found myself whispering in my head, "Don't grow up, don't ever stop loving each other unconditionally or lose your innocence.  Don't grow up!!"  I was smiling as I watched their carefree play but on the inside I felt a twinge of sadness as I know this stage in our family's life will be over before I know it.  Even though Charlie is only 2, gone are the days of babyhood, diapers, nursing around the clock, diaper bags, strollers, baby playgroups.  Now we're running, biking, climbing, all-day-adventuring, learning, reading!  All WONDERFUL and awesome and lovely things but to think of how fast the baby years came and went...wow.

My heart is so so so full of joy.  I am so blessed to be called mom by these 3 amazing people, to spend all of my time loving, teaching, guiding, training, raising, shepherding.  I can't imagine life any other way. 



 "Motherhood is not a hobby, it is a calling. You do not collect children because you find them cuter than stamps. It is not something to do if you can squeeze the time in. It is what God gave you time for."

07 October, 2012

pictures are gone

ALL of my previous blog postings have lost their pictures.  I have no clue what happened or how to get them back!  *major sad and confused face*

02 June, 2012

attempting awesome

We all slept in late this fine Saturday morning. After slowly stumbling out of bed, one by one, by 10am we were in full play mode (that's precisely 6 minutes after my coffee was finished brewing). I have been trying to find contentment in staying home, something that is hard for me because we all love being out and about and on the go. I'm learning to say YES more than I say no.

The kids were getting antsy because the sun was shining after several days of gloom. I sent them all out back but sometimes, the same ol' backyard just won't do. I was huddled on the couch with my 2nd cup of coffee, surfing Pinterest from my phone, reveling in the quiet for just a moment. Do you know how many kids crafts & projects I've got pinned? LOTS. It's EASY to pin something but actually doing it requires a whole lot more. Something inside me sparked and I jumped of the couch, full of "I'm going to do an awesome, pin-worthy project with my kids!" My steps were quick and I felt very much put together as I started pulling items out of my cupboards for some sort of dough/gak.

"I should blog about this wonderful thing I'm about to let my kids experience! Oh, and pictures!" I thought. So, maybe this would be the first post in months onto a blog that's touched maybe 5 times a year. I was doing something show-off-worthy and I was going to blog about it, gosh darn it!

Problem #1: Not enough flour. Problem 2#: No baby oil.

That's ok! I'll improvise! I grab some olive oil and head outside. By now the kids are following me around asking 100 questions. I try to be patient and say, "We're going to do something FUN!" I dump the flour and olive oil in a large, shallow rubbermaid container. I attempt to mix it together to create "Moon Dough" but it's just not happening. Meanwhile, the children are just staring at me, possibly thinking I'm all sorts of crazy.

I decided to go with the flow and pretend like I was doing something on purpose! I said, "Hang on guys, this is going to be awesome!" and I bound inside to grab more supplies. Measuring cups, spatulas, a large bucket of tinted green water, more random baking powders, and my camera. I set it on the ground and told them to "Go ahead."

And just like that, they were mixing and dumping and stirring and making a big goopy mess.

My lesson? Sometimes, details just don't matter. Projects and fun with your kids doesn't have to be pin-worthy or even pretty in order to be a success.

I snapped some photos of them discovering and then I just sat back in the grass and watched them create. They were silent for the most part, occasionally blurting out "EWW look at this! This is sticky! Can I eat it?" and eventually it turned into a restaurant of sorts and I was served sloppy soup and lemonade.












It wasn't until an hour into playing that I realized that I'd also have to clean up this "awesome" mess. Hosing them off wasn't an option because it's barely 70 degrees today. But carrying them all into the bath wasn't too appealing either. The flour, water, baking soda, corn starch mix was getting thick and hard with each passing minute. I considered carrying buckets of hot water out to their pool, in fact I DID carry three buckets out before that got old. Thankfully I never took the hose adapter of our bathroom sink (I'm kind of laughing at myself for not doing so. Laughing but grateful today!) from Charlie's birth...18 months ago. Lazy? No...smart! In no time we had a very warm pool filling up on the patio. Add some bath soap and it's an instant hot tub party outside. It didn't take long for them to all strip down, promising to stay on the patio behind the privacy fence.

The way I see it, I used just as much water as I would to fill the tub & you'd better believe this is totally their bath for the day. AND...3 hours later and they are all out there in the 'hot tub' again! We are so resourceful!
When I hooked the hose up Analee whispered with a big grin, "Are you having a homebirth today?"




23 February, 2012

Brian Arthur




Brian Arthur
10/15/08 7lbs 12oz
1 year old 19 lbs
2 years old 25.4lbs
3 years old 28 lbs
4 years old 32 lbs



[17 Oct 2008 Friday]

Brian Arthur

This is just the start of a work in progress, also known as Brian's birth story. I want to write right now while it's still fresh. I will add to it as I need to and update here.


I was due with Brian around October 27th and had felt all along that he would come a little early. I had been joking with people that the 14th was the full moon and hoped that it would send me into labor. Also, my good friend, Rebekah, was due on the 15th and we had been saying for a while how cool it would be to have our babies on the same day. I had my 38 week appointment with my OB on the morning of the 14th and she said I was dialated to 4cm already. Of course this would excite any pregnant woman ready to give birth! I went home so excited but trying NOT to be so excited because I knew very well it could still be weeks before he arrived. I went about my day with a gut feeling that it would in fact be soon. I installed the baby's carseat, got a few things checked off of my to-do list, and finished packing my hospital bag. We went to bed around 10 that night, not expecting in the least what the next 12 hours would bring.

I woke up out of a dead sleep at 12:50am on the 15th with a mild contraction. A few moments later, another. I laid in bed until 1:30am with the contractions coming about 6 minutes apart when I finally decided to get up and walk around to see if they went away. I paced my living room, ate a banana, and got on the computer. The contractions kept coming ever 4-6 minutes and were pretty managable. Around 2:30am they became a little stronger and I was needing to actually focus on my breathing to get through them. I tried sitting in a warm bath for a while and that helped, but while in there I noticed some "bloody show" and decided to get out and wake up Brandon. By this time, the contractions were 3 mintues apart, lasting about 1 minute each, and really requiring some focus on my part. I told Brandon what was going on and tried to lay back down for a little bit. I instantly got sick to my stomach and had Brandon running for the trash can so I could vomit. It was about 4am by now and he started gathering our things for the hospital. Standing up was not an option as I had thought it would be from the different positions we had practiced in our Bradley Method classes. I stayed on my birthing ball for the next hour or so before we left for the hospital. I called my sister Meliessa and she arrived to stay with Analee at 5am and Brandon and I left.

The car ride is a bit of a blur. I think I had my eyes closed mostly as I breathed through contractions. We checked in and got into our room pretty quickly. I had sent out text messages a little earlier letting friends and family know I was in labor, Rebekah (my friend who was due on the 15th) was one of them. No sooner did we pull into the parking lot did I get a reply from her that said "I'm here already." We were both in labor at the same exact time! So anyway, we got into our room and the nurse wanted to check me just to see where we were at. She couldn't even feel any cervix and thought I was at 10cm, so another nurse checked and thought it was more of a 9. I tried using their "labor tub" which I found to be no help at all! It was like a standard bath tub...but even more shallow. So my belly wasn't even submerged, not to mention the barely luke-warm water they filled it with. I stayed in there for a little while and suddenly needed to push. I think it was just before 7am when I moved to the bed and my nurse checked me again and said I was fully dialated and ready to push. My doula, Bobbi, had arrived at this time also.

Other than the one contraction in the labor tub, I don't think I ever actually felt the urge to push. I was encouraged to try pushing with each contraction and I think I did try, although I think I this is about when I went through transition and everything was a blur for a little bit, I don't remember actually starting to push. However, things got serious pretty quickly and I was up on the squatting bar pushing with all of my might. My legs were falling asleep so Bobbi suggested that I try hands and knees position and I remember I kept saying "I don't know what to do! What should I do??" and then tried a new position. I was having terrible back labor and pushing was not bringing any relief like you hear a lot of women say it does. The only thing that got me through each contraction was tons of counter pressure on my back and hips. Between Brandon, Bobbi, and my mom, someone (or 2 of them at some points!) was pushing with all of their strength on my lower back and hips and when they stopped, I yelled, "GET ON MY BACK! DON'T LEAVE ME!" After almost 2 hours of pushing I started to get really discouraged. My doctor check to see where he was at and he was still quite far up the birth canal. At this point I was so ready to quit. I kept saying "it's not working!" and "he's stuck...I just want to be done!" Bobbi was AMAZING with encouraging me to stick with it and telling me how every single birth is different and Brian just needed more time and encouragement. I kept trying. I was in a totally different world in my mind. I pictured begging for drugs or even the c-section to just get it over with. But I had my mom in one ear, Bobbi in the other, and Brandon completely physically supporting me...I knew I could push through. The doctor had offered to break my water at some point and although I didn't want any form of intervention, I let her, just hoping it would bring forth some progress. Well, it didn't. Brian was below the bag of waters so there was no release since he was basically blocking the bag.

About another hour of strenuous pushing went by and I finally asked for something to help me relax and take some pain away. We decided on an epidural since the IV drugs make you really loopy and only take the edge off, not the worst part of the contractions. So the doctor called up the anestesiologist. I had to have a liter of saline first so the IV was hooked up. By the time that was finished, the anestesiologist was ready to start the epidural. I was about to begin a contraction so I asked her to wait a minute...and wouldn't you know it, Brian began to crown! Little bugger!!! I think it was 3-4 contractions later, at 10:37am, that he finally came out. We concluded that he was most likely face up and stuck on my tailbone that whole time, hence the back labor and pushing for 4 hours, and by the grace of GOD decided to turn and decend at the very moment I was begging for pain medication. The nurse kept saying, "See..he just needed to be threatened a little bit!" and then Bobbi would say, "No..he just needed some encouragement." She stayed so positive the entire time and I can't even begin to tell you how much that helped. Everyone in the room that day played their role perfectly. Brandon was my phsyical rock...he stayed by my side the entire time and while he was pretty much silent, he did just what I needed him to do. My mom was sweet and comforting and I even yelled out "MOOOOMMM!" during a few hard pushes. Bobbi kept talking to me and reassuring me that this was what my body was meant to do and she helped my mom and Brandon with supporting me. And Brandons mom, Judy, stayed supportive from far way. Haha...she was awesome. She was silent and strong and kept control over herself. LOL That's only funny if you know that she probably wanted to yell "get the drugs!!!" the entire time. She did amazing and supported me in the exact way I needed her to. And my doctor and nurse...they were awesome. I was so dead set on doing this alone and not needing their help. And while they didn't play much of a part during my labor, they were so cooperative with my birth plan and so encouraging while we fought and pushed for 4 hours. They left all of the decision making up to me and didn't try to push medical interventions.

I got to hold my sweet little man immediately. Skin to skin. It was amazing. He had a beautiful cone head from his rough journey, but he cried and cried and then began nursing right away. It was so surreal, to finally have him in my arms after everything we had just been through. My doctor gave me a few stitches for a 2nd degree tear and then they let us be. I held him for another 45 minutes before they weighed and measured him. He was 7 pounds, 12 ounces, and 20 inches long. Brandon then held him for the first time and then my sisters and the Grandpa's came in. Shortly after that, Miss Analee got to meet her brother. I had her come sit by me first because I hadn't seen her since the night before. She was so sweet and curious about my IV and everyting going on around us. Brandon handed me Brian and Analee was amazed! She softly said, "Ooh...baby!" We explained that that was the Brian we had been talking about all along...she just sat and smiled and touched his face. I tried to put her down but she wanted to stay close by. Brandon took Brian and THEN she wanted down...turns out she just wanted to be by Brian! We had the chance to go home after 6 hours but I decided to stay the full 24 because I literally felt like I had been hit by a semi. We moved to our recovery suite shortly after birth and left the next morning by 11am.

Brian is doing amazing and nursing like a little pro. He gags a lot but the pediatrician said that was normal, especially since he was sitting the birth canal for so long, he probably swalled a bit of amniotic fluid and needed to get it out. Analee loves him and asks to hold him all of the time. She has been a little more testy than usual but overall she is doing awesome considering this new life in our house.

And as for me, I feel pretty amazing, too. My muscles are very sore but that's pretty much my only complaint. It was so awesome to be able to move around, use the toilet by myself, and not feel so drugged and out of it after his birth.

=============================

A snippet I wrote about Brian when he was 6 months old:
 Brian was such a trooper. He, like Analee last year, gasped and gulped as the wind hit his face. It wasn't terribly windy, but we got a few gusts here and there. He was bundled up in his blue fleece suit and snuggled right in when I put him in the stroller. It didn't take long for him to drift off into baby dreamland.
===============================================

2/23/11
'Bout time I start a blog just for my sweet & spicy Brian. He's 3 years, 4 months old and quite the character! He's up. He's down. He's totally cool, laid back. And then he's furrowing his brows and grumbling about how his eyes are watering and someone *must* wipe them right NOW!

There truly is never a dull moment with this boy. At any given moment, he is either a power ranger, a dino, a 'supa hereo', rocket man, or just about any other person or object that runs, jumps, and fights. In his down moments, he is cuddly and very empathetic. He'll be the first to apologize in an argument (after you wipe his eyes, of course!) or remind me "Momma, I'M obeying!" :-)

More love gushiness on Brian to come....



Brian-isms

‎"Momma! When I run and jump over stuff, you have to guess what I'm playin', OK??"
'Ok, olympics? Racer? Rocket ship? Dinosaur?'
"Nope. I'm a runner pap. I do paps and pappers and love papping." -Brian

Pap?? That's not a lisp or mispronounced word. I don't know what it is but he sure thinks it's awesome!




While at the movie theater themed dentist checking out a gray tooth Brian has (he smacked it on the tile floor), Brian saw a Tangled movie trailer poster above his exam chair. I asked him who loves Tangled? He said, "Analee dooz! Maybe, momma, she can fall and hurt her teef and come to dentist to see dis?" What a thoughtful boy! The dentist and I had to hold back our laughter and I explained to him that she could come see it in a few months for her routine cleaning.



4/2/2012

Analee & I were doing a reading lesson and Brian wanted SO badly to join us (he usually has quiet time in his room while we're reading) so I let him sit quietly with us. He grew wiggly very quickly so I gave him a task to keep him busy, asked him to get my coffee creamer and a spoon out of the fridge. After standing in the fridge for a few minutes, he said, "I'm weally sorry momma, but your coffee cweamer says "coffee wate" on it. I'm weally sorry." Puzzled, I asked him to point to where it said that and he pointed to the label "Coffee Mate" Seriously??? He sounded it out! WTG 3 year old! I'm not sure why he was apologizing though, lol.
 
5/8/12
 
Just overheard Analee say, "Brian there is a song that says 'cry out to Jesus' and that means like when you're sad and you cry for mommy? Well you can also cry out to Jesus! That's what that means." Brian says, "Ooooooh! Well you wanna know another cool song?" She says, "Sure..."

"Go go power rangers! Mighty morphin power rangers! Dat means da power wangers are gonna fight! POW POW!"

We're a pretty diverse crowd.

5/1/13
Brian, telling a dream:
"I had a dream that there was a REAL GOD, like right HERE.  And you and papa were died and I cried out to God to save you and He DID!  That was my favoritest dream ever."

After a trip to the zoo:
"I smelled the stink of the buffalo!"

22 October, 2010

Getting Ready for baby C

Even though I have given birth twice before, I feel like I am about to enter a world in which I've never been. I feel like cannot draw experience from Analee's birth since I had many interventions and it was very much doctor-orchestrated and medicated. Who knows how long I would have labored or pushed had I allowed my body to do what it was trying to do already. The experience was scary and exhausting and in hind site, I have many regrets. Brian's birth was natural and while it was very, very hard, it was so empowering and rewarding to do it all on my own. His position and possibly head size made for a very long end stage of labor. I had both Anlaee and Brian in a hospital.

I think being in a hospital gives you a, sometimes, false sense of security. Because if you wanted, you could (in a sense) give up and let someone else do the hard work. I don't think I felt safer in a hospital. No, safety isn't a concern of mine. We are having a home birth this time around and I have been having intense bouts of anxiety about going into labor. I know that birthing at home is very safe and I know that my midwife will take great care of both me and the baby. I think the anxiety is coming from the fact that at home, it's all me. I won't have that "back-up" plan of laying back and letting the drugs do the work.

And the funny thing is that I do not even WANT those drugs. I know I don't need them. I know that I CAN do this. After all, I did it drug-free once before, right? But coming to the realization that it really is "all me" this time and there is no going back sends me into a tiny anxiety attack if I allow myself to think about it too much.

I know I am ready, I know that I was created for this.

I was laying in bed last night thinking of the things I still need to do before birth. I started to feel sick to my stomach and wondered if these emotions were a sign of impending labor. I started doubting myself and my ability to birth at home. Immediately, the scripture & song Psalm 23 came to my mind. I know it doesn't go exactly like this, but I kept repeating to myself, "The LORD is my Shepherd. I will fear no obstacle, no pain, no task, no hardships, nothing. I know I am ready, I know that I was created for this."

Eventually I fell asleep, only to be awakened several times by Brian. :) I then wondered, again, if he was sensing a change and just needed to be close to me. So I welcomed him into my bed and we talked and snuggled for a (long) while before he finally fell asleep.

So I don't know if my anxiety and emotions or Brian's late night need for Momma are any indication of labor. But I do know that when it IS time, I will be ready. I don't doubt the day will be long and my body will be tired, but I know that I am ready.

09 September, 2010

Life is still good.

Oh happy day?

Yes, it will be a happy day. That is, after I finish this cup of coffee. We've had a whirlwind of a morning already...let me tell you. Brian is a might early riser & was up and at 'em at 5:55am. I convinced him to come snuggle with me for a bit with his blankie, binkie, and Woody doll. We cuddled & he nursed for a while. And then suddenly I hear "There's a Snake in My Boot!" followed by 8 more Woody catch phrases. Each one with a little boy giggle behind it.

Yeah, yeah...fun & cute wake up call. It just might have been a little more sweet if it was an hour later. But, lucky me, daddy gets up with Brian. So off to the living room the boys went and I rolled over, pulled the blankets tightly up to my ears, and dozed off again. Brandon had to leave for work at 7:45 so when he left, he opened our door so Brian could get me if he needed me. Our duplex is really small and Brian usually chills out with some morning cartoons until about 8 when Analee and I wake up. But this morning he came back in right as Brandon was leaving and wanted up on the bed. I pulled him up and dozed back off. And shockingly, so did he! A very, very rare occurance. This boy goes from 0-60 the minute he wakes up and does not settle down on his own so easily, so I took full advantage of his sleepy self & snuggled up next to him.

And then...chaos erupted. A sharp SCREAM, a scream that could only come from my girl, woke me from a deep morning slumber. I jumped out of bed so smoothly as to not wake Brian up, but in the process I jammed my poor little pinky toe on something. I ran into the bathroom and found a very devastated Analee, jammies half way off and soaked, standing in a large pee puddle.

Now let me stop for a second. I need to tell you that Analee HATES messing up. She hates messes & feels so badly when she does something wrong. The look on her face was more painful than the thought of having to now mop my bathroom floor all the while I coulda still been sleeping with Brian. It was more painful than my throbbing toe that I hadn't even taken .2 seconds to look at.

She immediately started apologizing and saying "I couldn't get the zipper all of the way down! I'm sorry momma, I'm so sorry!" Oh, my heart. I just told her accidents happened and silly sleepers are so hard to get off when you're only almost 4. We cleaned up quickly and both ran back to my bed to, thankfully, find a still sleeping Brian. We snuggled up on the other side of the bed and I just held her. She was so disappointed in herself, I could feel it.

I was so wrapped up in trying to reassure her that I had completely ignored the fact that my toe was THROBBING. Analee decided she wanted to get up so when she hopped out of bed, I took a peek at my pinky toe and discovered a nice little mess. Blood...all over my sheets. A trail to the bathroom, through the kitchen, and hallway. My poor little toenail hanging by a thread.

Honestly, my first thought was "Who's gonna come tell me it's okay and clean up this mess??" Here my almost 2 year old was sleeping the morning away, something that never happens, and the world is falling apart all around me so I can't even enjoy it with him. But I chose to just lay there with him. The sheets needing washing anyway. I fell back asleep and there we snoozed until 9:15. When we rolled out of bed, I took a deep breath, sucked up my search for sympathy, and gathered the bedsheets & pee soaked jammies, and started the laundry. Breakfast has been served, and coffee is sitting in front of me. The children are having a pretend picnic.
Life is still good.

Oh happy day.








30 August, 2010

Charles Gregory


Charles Gregory
11/11/10 9 lbs 4oz
10 weeks old. 13.2lbs
1 year old 23 lbs
2 years old 26 lbs






Currently 30 weeks pregnant with baby C.  I'm starting to feel "normal" though. I 'popped' kind of early and have felt huge since about 18 weeks. Everyone has been shocked to hear that I'm not that far along since pretty much day one. But now I'm feeling a little more on track with growth & 10 weeks doesn't sound so far away!

EDD: November 11th
Gender: Boy
Activity Level: WILD CHILD

-------------------------------------

I could think of SO many titles for this post:

Charles Gregory Wilson's Birth Story
The birth of Charlie Wilson
Charlie's Homebirth
I FREAKING DID IT!
Charles Wilson's water birth


Haha, it truly was AMAZING. Amazing. An experience I will never forget. And one that I want so badly to do again and again and again and again. We're not certain if we'll have more children, but in dreamland, I would have 20 more babies just to have 20 more homebirths. And NO, I'm not crazy!


--------------

10 November 2010

One day before my "due date." Throughout my entire pregnancy, I had told any and everyone who would listen that there was no way I was getting to my due date. My other two were early (Analee 4 days, Brian 2 weeks) so I just "knew" baby C would be early as well. Wishful thinking? Probably. So imagine my surpise when November 10th came around and I was *still* pregnant. I had been tossing around ideas of "inducing" myself (ie: spicy foods, chiropractic techniques, jumping, walking, herbal tinctures, etc) from about 38 weeks. Everytime I was tempted to try something, I talked myself down. I had to remind myself that he truly would come when HE was ready, that I wouldn't be pregnant forever.

I was discussing this with my midwife at my 39 week visit. She told me, "This is your experience. What do you want your story to be?" Meaning, do I really want the end of my pregnancy to be remembered as frantic & just trying to 'get it over with?' I quickly decided that I would just rest, relax, wait for baby C. The next week went on and I was so at peace. I was comfortable and any anxiety that I previously had just went away as we waited.

I kind of always felt like I would go into labor at night. So each evening as we were preparing for bed, I tidied up the house, and went over my checklists for birth. The evening of November 10th, we decided to go for a long walk before meeting up with Brandon's dad and sister for dinner. We circled the block a few times, stopping every so often so I could catch my breath and stretch out my back. Later we ate a yummy dinner at Culvers (of COURSE my "last meal" was a cheeseburger!). I had been having some strong braxton hicks contractions for a few weeks and they were starting to feel stronger, not painful, but stronger that night.

Every once in a while I go picture-taking crazy. When we got home I felt the urge to snap, snap, snap away...pictures of the children, Brandon, and myself. I later was very thankful for the impomptu photo shoot! It was our last evening as a family of 4.






We all went to bed. Goodnight.

-------

11 November 2010

2:00am
I woke up with some very strong, cramp-like contractions. Like both of my other labors, these contractions woke me from a dead sleep. Two o'clock in the morning on the dot.
(Analee's labor started at 3am sharp, Brian's at 1am sharp...interesting.)

I layed there for about 45 minutes, watching the clock. The waves of cramps came and went and didn't appear to be steady. I closed my eyes between each one and started to realize that "this is it!" and I couldn't help but smile. I was not afraid. I was READY.

2:50am
I sat up in bed and woke Brandon. I just had a big smile on my face and he said "Should I call into work?" I just nodded. A few more minutes passed and I decided to get up and call my midwife. As I walked down the hall to the living room, it was like a kickstart for my contractions.

3:00am
Contractions went from mild and crampy to moderately strong and close together. I quickly called my midwife and said "This is it!" and she was on her way. She had about a 45 minute drive so this is why I called her so early in labor (or what I THOUGHT was early labor).

3:28am
I sent a text out to everyone else on my birth team, telling them the time had come and for them head on over.

By this time I was already needing to focus and breath through contractions. I brought the birthing ball out to the kitchen and sat on that for a while. At this time Brandon began filling the birthing pool. I remember looking up during a hard contraction and seeing Cheli come into the house. Out of all 10 people that attended the birth, her arrival was the only one I recall. She immediately jumped into "doula" action, asking what I needed and coaching me through contractions.

It's funny, I had plans all throughout my pregnancy to do some light housework, relaxing, and spending time with the kids during early labor. Little did I know that that hour from 2am-3am was my early labor and as soon as my feet hit the floor at 3am, active labor began and while I was able to relax through most of it, there certainly was no "housework" being done on my part! Thankfully, my birth team rocked and took care of everything for me.

Here is a little bit, word for word, of the birthing journal that various people wrote in during labor:

"4:01am You are laboring great. Brandon is filling up the pool! Sara, Jenn, Cheli are here. Linda just arrived; Analee watching Max & Ruby, contractions getting noticably closer. Mom just arrived as well."

Oh yes, forgot to mention...Analee woke up around 3:20am when I was making my phone calls. She was very worried that I was leaving and became very clingy. I explained to her that it was time for Baby Charlie to come see us and that I was not going anywhere. I thought to myself, how hard would that have been to have her see me leave and be gone for a few days, coming home with a little new creature? I did it that way when her brother Brian was born , and no, she's probably not scarred for life. But being able to have her be a part of the whole experience, having my children right by my side...reason #63 to have a homebirth. She was so in tune with me, she knew exactly what I needed.




Brian come trotting down the hall around 4am. I was not expecting that! I remember seeing him and just pointing to him in the middle of a contraction. LOL I don't remember who got him, but I do know that he knew there was something exciting go on and did not go back to bed. He spent a lot of time playing in the living room with his Grandpa Darin and Grandma Jucy.




Ok, back to the journal log:

"4:06am You are vomitting; going through contractions on birthing ball, Cheli helping w/ counter pressure on lower back.

4:18am Jenny arrives

4:21am contraction"

At this point, Linda asked me if I wanted to try getting in the tub. I told her I was afraid because I knew that things would probably get more intense in the water. I was also nervous to speed things up since my midwife was not there yet. I decided to wait a few more minutes.



"4:24am contraction

4:27am contraction. Analee is in the bedroom w/ you and Brian is walking through the kitchen, livingroom with your mom.

4:30am Rosy arrives

4:31am contraction
4:33am contracton

4:36am You get in birthing pool




4:37am contraction; they are getting longer and more intense

4:40am contraction. Linda checks heart tones

4:43am contraction

4:47am contraction; Analee says "Baby Charlie is coming!"

4:51am contraction. Jenny & Brandon begin bringing boiling water in to control water temp.





4:54am contraction

4:58am contraction; you say you think you're pushing 'a little'

4:59am Linda checks heart tones, Brian is eating Kix at the table"

At this time, I starting getting "grunty" and letting out little involuntary grunt pushes. When asked if I felt like pushing, I whispered "I don't know." I'm not much of a talker when I'm in labor. :) The end of each hard contraction was met with a grunt and push. Again, my body was doing this all on it's own. Even in that intense moment, I was in awe at what was going on with very little effort on my part.

My mom and Cheli were sitting on the floor in front of me, verbally coaching me through contractions and letting me squeeze their hands. Brandon was offering physical support and giving counter pressure on my lower back. I may or may not have yelled "Get on my back!" at one point during labor. Haha!
At 5:05am is when my midwife noted that I began actively pushing. I think the little grunty pushes went on for a while before I put much effort forth, though.
5:09am I felt a BURST and knew my water had broken. I said, "I think my water just broke." Brandon said "OH YEAH, I saw it rush through the water!"

Again, even in the intensity of the moment, I found myself totaly in my head, thinking, "This is AMAZING. I've never experienced my water breaking on it's own. This is working...I am really doing this."
From 5:15-5:42am, contractions and pushing continued.

"5:43am you said 'It burns so bad!'

5:44am push, push, push

5:45am head is out!

5:46am almost shoulders...."

During this second stage of labor (pushing) everyone in the room was so encouraging, offering calm affirmations, and reminders that I was doing exactly what I needed to be doing. No coaching me on when or how to push. No holding my breath and pushing for a count of 10. After his head was out, my midwife did let out a single "You've got to push!" because his shoulders seemed to be a little lodged. The little bugger had his arms crossed up over his shoulders. But that was just the UMPH I needed to get him out, once and for all. I few more strong pushes and...



"5:47am Baby is out!"





2 hours and 47 minutes after active labor started.

Cue tears of JOY, laughter, smiles, high fives, hugs all around.

Out of the water and straight into my arms he went. I breathed a giant sigh of relief and just reveled in the moment. I had dreamt of this moment for years. After Analee was born in '06, I knew it would be different the next time. And after Brian was born in 'o8, while his birth was definitely different than Analee's, I still knew that the next time would be peacefully done at home. And it was.

I felt an overwhelming sense of pride and accomplishment. I've heard people say "I don't need a medal for going through natural childbirth" and they talk about natural childbirthers like they are just trying to prove a point or win some award or title. Of course I didn't do it naturally at home for any of those reasons, but I sure did feel like Super Woman and wanted to shout it from the rooftops. I did this for my son. I did this for me and my family. My intention was to bring life into the world as perfect nature intended, for the safety of myself and my baby.

And I did it. And BOY, DID IT FEEL GOOD!

-----

Charles Gregory Wilson born at 5:47am on his due date, November 11th, 2010


9lbs, 4oz. 20.5 inches





We are so in love.




I was able spend the next 3 days in bed with my new boy. I was so blessed by my family and friends who came to clean my house, make us food, and play with the big kids.

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5/4/2013 age 2.5 and potty training
"Mommy I just went pee and it feel me so good."

Charlie often says things like "My tummy feels hurt!"  or "Fanks, you feeled me better!"  hehe