Birthing My Second Child
Exactly seven years ago right now, labor began with my middle child. I was 41 weeks pregnant and for the last week, my sweet baby showed he was not in a hurry to come out. I wasn’t bothered because I loved being pregnant. He was healthy and he was still within the normal range of 37-42 weeks pregnant so all was well. I had an appointment with my midwife in the morning. She said baby was perfectly safe. She said I could go to a chiropractor if I wanted to be sure my body was aligned and ready for baby. I made an appointment at 3 PM with Dr. Andrino (he’s the best!) who specializes in prenatal chiropractic work.
My mom was over, playing with my daughter and we decided to go for a walk. As we walked, my surges began. I told her I was starting to feel them but she got very excited and told me to let her know each time I had one. She was staring at her watch and I wanted to lean back into the process. I wanted to BE in the moment. I didn’t tell her when the next surge came. After 10 seconds, she said, “you should be having one now”. I told her I was but to just let it go. My sweet baby was getting ready.
I called the midwife when we got home. She suggested I keep my 3 PM chiro appointment. I went and Dr. Andrino said my pelvis was torqued so baby would have had a hard time coming out when he got to his shoulders. When we were checking out I had my biggest surge yet. Labor was intensifying thanks to my body being aligned. “My baby is coming today!”, I thought.
We had my 23 month old daughter around, so the afternoon was still centered on her. My husband, mom and dad were around and we just hung in my house. The midwife and her apprentice were also over. I’m sure someone made dinner at some point. My mom put my daughter to bed around 8 PM. Then the house got quieter and I turned inward as labor intensified. I had wanted a water birth with my first, but it didn’t happen. I was eager to try again. Fortunately, the apartment we rented, had a large, triangular tub in the bathroom. My midwife asked if I wanted to get in the tub; I couldn’t tell you the hour. I said “yes” so we went upstairs. I had a playlist and we lit candles around the bathroom so it would be serene. Jeff got in the tub with me and was supporting me through my surges. The bath felt so good, the warm water eased the surges and helped me stay very relaxed.
I got the urge to start pushing and was able to stay in the bathtub. The midwife said to breathe through it and push gently. I pushed part of baby’s head out. I pushed again and baby’s head was crowned. He stayed crowned for 3-4 minutes and if you’ve birthed vaginally, you know how that must have felt to hold baby’s head in the ring of fire. The water eased the intensity though. I was extremely calm and trusting of the midwife and they lovingly told me I was doing a great job, to breathe and to push baby down in my next exhale.
Baby’s head was out. Since babies live in amniotic fluid there is no harm at all in their heads being in the water. It isn’t until their nostrils reach air that they start to breathe and often cry because air is a shock to their bodies. In fact, water birthing is the most gentle way to introduce baby to the world. After the head was out, it was a few pushes and the shoulders popped out and then baby’s full body emerged. I slid baby up my chest so just his head was out. We didn’t know if we were having a boy or a girl, although my heart knew I was having a boy. The lights were still off. We turned them on so we could look at the world’s newest miracle.
At 1:50 AM, I lifted baby up out of the water so we could see what we had. Jeff was behind me, our bodies warm in the tub. Our daughter slept in the crib on the other side of the wall, I’d just birthed baby against. We were all connected, our new family of four, even though our daughter slept through it. As I lifted baby up, we saw his little penis and my heart rejoiced.
Here he was, my precious, sweet, baby Luca. Luca Carlos Usas was here. I am crying tears of joy as I write. My heart had never been so full. Since I was a girl, I dreamed I would have a daughter, then a son. Dream completed, my babies here, earth side. Everything was as it was meant to be.
I can’t believe as I sleep tonight, my baby will turn seven. Luca has been SO excited. Last night he said, “Can Oct 3rd be my birthday? I”m just SO excited!! I can’t WAIT!!” Isn’t that awesome? I love his eagerness to celebrate the day he was born. I am excited to retell him his birth story and show him a video of when he entered the world. His life is one of my greatest blessings. If you’ve met Luca you know why. It’s hard to put into words how incredible he is. He is as loving, empathetic and kind as can be. He feels all the feelings and says the most kind and loving things. He genuinely cares about people and strives to make sure everyone is happy. He assumes a lot for a child, but he does it so naturally. His love is as pure and genuine as he is. He gives the best hugs, says the sweetest things and cares for everyone around him. Luca IS love. Thank God, he is here!!!