During my pregnancy I had many paralyzing fears, some I knew were irrational, but no matter what Tracy, Olympia and Andrea were all just a phone call away. They really helped me get through those moments! It might sound like I'm trying to flatter them, but I'm being honest. I never expected to be a mother and finding out I would be one, was the best feeling in the world which came with a side of doubt and a 'lost in the wilderness' feel. Until I became pregnant I didn't know much about pregnancy or the birth process, and neither did Morgan, my partner.
My pregnancy was a breeze. I knew Rem's birth would be painful, but the endurance part of birth was an eye opener. My passive labor was 24 hours, active labor 12 hours and I pushed for an hour and a half and then I gave birth to beautiful healthy child at home in my most comfortable bed. We planned a water birth but things change! I must have called these ladies a million times during my passive labor with questions and comments and they were completely there for me and Morgan.
Andrea was first on the scene while I was making the transition from passive to active labor. I started out pretty upset! Andrea’s smile and support made me more comfortable with the situation. She also provided coaching into different positions and breathing patterns the midwives had practiced with me that helped me relax and focus on what I needed to do. Olympia showed up shortly after and at this point all I wanted to do was sleep and NOT EAT, I was only allowed to do one of these things. So, I slept between contractions which varied between two and seven minutes apart and was feed any moment that allowed me time to attempt to chew, swallow and have a sip of hydrating liquid. Olympia was the first face I saw when I woke up and the last voice I heard before passing out for my power naps.
Where was Morgan for all of this? He was in the next room asleep for much of the active labor, which he seriously needed! Morgan is my best friend and life partner and his support and love during my passive labor I will never forget. There isn't much to say but that he was there, he was present- in the moment and he had nothing but love to give. He brought his love and his pretty blue eyes to our son. When Olympia arrived, and Morgan was getting a well deserved rest, I was ready for a different form of support.
Active labor was amazing. I was working through the contractions with my Moo's, and doing lunges and pacing around our pool table when I wasn't sleeping. Tracy showed up in the wee hours of the morning and gave me one of the best back rubs I've ever had and more positive reinforcement. These women exemplify the epitome of a team. My home was like a bee hive with everyone doing their job and tagging each other out for breaks, naps and meals. After my labor my mom shared with me how amazed she was with everyone working together so fluidly. She had her worries about home birth, and she didn't have to worry. She enjoyed her interactions with Olympia, Tracy and Andrea, and thought they did an amazing job with me, her youngest and maybe most fragile child. It was really nice to see and hear her confidence in these three women.
At no point during my labor did I have to focus on anything but the basics, breathing, maintaining some physical comfort, and reminding myself to trust my body, everything else was taken care of. Now, thinking back, I couldn't have done without my midwives, their experience, confidence in the process and positive reinforcement helped me so much: these words do not do them justice. It takes a village to raise a child and also a village to have one!
I found out after my labor that my active labor was consistently inconsistent. My contractions were two to seven minutes apart the entire time. The decision as to when to start pushing was not an easy one. The intimacy of my relationship with Tracy and Olympia, and their experience made them able to make the right decision for the right time . At that point I wasn't saying much but Moo and sleep. They read my body language, listened to my mumbles and I had my son in my arms after an hour and a half of pushing. When I saw his hairy owl head between my legs there was no pain. Not just the absence of pain but an abundance of heart. The word love is not enough to explain this moment; It felt as if everyone in the room had the same heart and we were all beating together, Morgan, (my mother and father in the hall way) and these three women I had just met 7 or 8 months prior, fitting into this equation so easily- equaling one beating super heart. I'm not a sappy person but this moment was exactly what it was and should have been.
Olympia and Tracy provided lots of resources in preparation for Rem's birth; reading material, diaper service information, herb suppliers and remedies, breastfeeding support, homeopathy information, where to get a massage, tips for my partner, placenta medicine, and the list goes on. What mattered the most was the gift they gave me of not having to think during labor. I got to just experience a most beautiful dance with my son, our birth dance, our first hardship and victory together.
Tracy, Olympia and Andrea enabled the dance to be a most spectacular dance and I will never forget them or that feeling."