Steady, quiet, waiting.
Peace, pressure, push.
When I met this couple, they were calm and bright, looking forward to meeting their new baby with all the hope of the third trimester.
This birth was so quiet, calm, and slow. For those who respond well and choose this path, and epidural can be an incredible thing, especially in an induction birth. It worked so well for this mama, she labored in the bed, resting in quiet peace all the way until it was time to push.
My journey with them started with a couple days of texting, knowing baby was coming but the progress was not being rushed. Mama was happy and had a serenity vibe about her, ready to meet her babe but ready to wait as long as it took for him to be ready.
This birth was the first in a string for me of long steady labors, that had me on my toes and taught me more then a bit of patience and calm. Birth is so unpredictable, it's really an art learning to live an on call life, a balance between being ready to go at a moments notice- and trying to embrace the slow calm moments before you are called. This mama was on her 4th pregnancy, so I was a bit nervous that baby would come quickly once things picked up.
When I arrived at 8pm all was still. I walked in and captured all the little details in the quiet space, admiring mamas beauty and the way the nurses had her sitting up, tilted in bed, to let gravity aid in bringing baby down.
The night settled on all like a quiet blanket. I chatted with some nurses while the couple rested, and eventually settled down and slept in a chair next to them.
As predicted, after mama passed 5 cm things moved quickly. She went from a 7 to 10 in very little time. When she began to feel the pressure of baby, the nurses set her up to begin pushing, asked her if she remembered how, and complimented her on how well she was doing after just one push. They told her that they would coach her until baby was close, then ask her to slow down for a moment while they called doctor when it was time. But after a few short pushes, it was clear that plan wasn't going to stick. Baby moved down so fast and easy, that when they asked her to stop pushing so they could call doctor in- she stopped, but baby didn't. Between contractions, without pushing, her body birthed her baby beautifully with ease and grace into a nurses arms. Everyone was smiling, and watching that miraculous moment was so magical.
Dad was amazed, mama was tired and out of it for a moment, but when she gained some strength back she couldn't keep her eyes of that little boy. Lot's of baby snuggles, and adoring looks followed.
I grabbed some hospital ice, my keys, and my camera. Then headed home to my pillow. Another beautiful birth captured, and my spirit was quiet and calm. I feel so grateful that these mothers invite me into their space to witness these breathtaking hours.