On Alaina’s birthday I received a special treat—her birth story written by my mom (called Baba in our family). I asked her if I could post it here and here it is!
Alaina’s Birth Story
Waiting for a baby to be born can be exciting and stressful at the same time – but waiting for baby Alaina was especially poignant because of Molly’s previous loss of little Noah. I was worried. I knew she had a specific vision of how this – her last – birth would be, and I was concerned that my presence would somehow ruin things for her, or not live up to her expectations. I was also actually afraid. I was afraid something would go wrong, either with the birth process or with the baby herself. I was afraid I’d have to be the one who was called upon to act in some heroic manner and would fail. I was afraid I wouldn’t measure up to Molly’s birth expectations. I wanted to do it all right, perfectly, and was afraid I couldn’t. I felt that voicing these fears would somehow manifest them, and I didn’t want to carry the fear into the sacred birth space. I felt prepared – I had been trained in neonatal resuscitation, knew where all the tinctures, supplements, and supplies were located, had a little bag packed for myself – but I was still emotionally and mentally concerned.
However, a few days before the birth, Molly and I had a talk, and it really cleared the air! When the “stand by” call came from Mark, I knew I was ready to be of service to my daughter and arriving granddaughter. The first request was for us to collect the big brothers, who had awakened early and were impacting Molly’s birth environment. I picked them up and brought them to home with me. At that time, Molly was very clear and focused, doing her work on the birth ball. When Mark called me to come back to the house at about 9:00, I scrambled into the car and tore over there, as if there might not be enough time! Molly has a history of precipitous births…….
There was definitely some birthy energy going on! Molly was on the ball with Mark rubbing her back. I knew she wanted to be left alone and have a peaceful environment, so I spoke as little as possible. At some point, I slipped over to her futon nest and tucked my little cheat sheet list underneath. I didn’t want to forget any of the resuscitation steps or what supplements to give her. I tried to remind her to eat, drink and use the bathroom, without being obtrusive about it. She was obviously making progress, and I could hear in her voice that the contractions were growing in intensity. She worried about being too much “in her head” and analyzing things. I tried to reassure her that this is always how she approaches the world, and that it was fine to be that way. She was up and moving around, talking and considering, and also worried that she might not be progressing. This made me think transition might be near, but I didn’t say that to her. She felt some rectal pressure and decided to sit on the toilet for a while. It seemed to me that things were progressing apace, when she reached down and felt something squishy. She said she thought she was pushing, and I decided it was time to abandon my “silence” (really hard for me, by the way!) and comment that she should probably get to her nest if she wanted to avoid having the baby on the toilet. She agreed, but didn’t really seem to want to move. No wonder. She barely made it! Meanwhile, I had called Summer, the doula, and midwife E.
Molly dropped to her knees on her futon nest, and had an obviously intense contraction. We helped her get her clothes off. She was upright on her knees, intent upon finding heart tones, when the phone started ringing incessantly. It was SO annoying that I ran over to, picked it up and slammed it down to make it stop. That’s when I heard some garbled crying and Molly had baby Alaina in her arms! In my mad dash to the phone, I had missed the actual moment of birth :(. We all burst into tears and Molly was repeating, “You’re alive! You’re alive! I did it! There’s nothing wrong with me!” The baby was crying lustily, so we got Molly into a prone position (she was still kneeling) with the baby on her chest and covered up. My job was to pop things into Molly’s mouth – supplements, vitamins, chlorophyll, etc., so I got ready to do that. Summer arrived, midwife E arrived, and all was right with the world. Baby Alaina was safe and in her mother’s arms! And in mine, as soon as I could get my hands on her…..
Molly’s version of Alaina’s full birth story.