And then it was here. The day that was over 9 months in the making. Baby was ready. My midwife had told me months ago that the average first time mom delivered 11 days past her due date. Well, here I was, 10 days past my due date and in labor.
My husband and I had decided to have a midwife-assisted home birth. We hired a Certified Nurse Midwife and a doula, rented a birthing tub, gathered our homebirth supplies, stocked the freezer with meals, and waited. And waited. And...
We waited until April 23rd, 2012 when I went into labor. As a p.s. to that last sentence, I do find the term "going into labor" to be somewhat misleading. Labor wasn't something that started at an exact time or moment for me. It didn't suddenly hit me. Labor started like small, gentle waves that gradually washed over me, eventually becoming tidal waves. Anyway. I went into labor on April 23rd. Over 30 hours later my son was born. April 24th. 11 days past my due-date.
I had pushed for 6 hours. Six hours. I had labored and pushed standing, laying in bed, kneeling, on a birth ball, hanging off of my husband, and in the birthing tub. I ended up birthing my son on the toilet. Yes, I did. I caught him with my own two hands. Yes, I did. I carried him into our bedroom and lay in bed with him on my bare chest, my husband beside me, staring down in absolute and utter awe.
Other women have described the birth experience to me as "empowering". Like, "childbirth is so empowering." I don't know if I felt empowered. Maybe, given time, I will reflect back and see the experience as empowering. I don't know. What I do know for sure is that I have never felt prouder of myself. I have never felt prouder of myself. I also know that birthing my son was just the beginning of the most important thing I will ever do. So, here I go.