On Saturday I watched my little sister, Erin, become a mama.
My sister thought she might have to be induced because she showed of signs of preeclampsia, but it was looking like it would be closer to 39 weeks, not 36 and 6. So, last Thursday I did what I was planning on doing, got up at 3:30 AM and took the first leg of my flights to Kansas, and landed in Chicago with time to spare... only to get a call from my brother-in-law around 10:00 AM which I answered with DO NOT EVEN TELL ME SHE IS BEING INDUCED RIGHT NOW.
Um yes. She is being induced at 7:00 tonight.
Cue sobbing from both Erin and I. Pacing, more sobbing, calling airlines, and calling friends in Kansas to cancel. One new plane ticket home, a flight to Albany landing at 4:30, picking up my mom at 5:30, and making it to Binghamton by 8:00 PM. World's longest day of travel? Maybe.
All worth it to see the the birth of this little guy. Every penny and every hour. I confirmed my dreams of being a doula/midwife/nurse once again. Can all my sisters and friends keep having babies so I don't actually have to go back to school? K, thanks.
Birth is my absolute favorite topic of discussion. The most amazing out of body experience that I could analyze and ponder over forever. No matter how hard I tried to explain everything to Erin no one can really comprehend the contractions, the pushing, THE RING OF FIRE, until they experience it themselves. Erin and I kept saying in the hospital, that we could just talk about it forever and ever and it still wouldn't be enough.
The greatest thing about each woman's birth story is that it's theirs. That baby came into the world, and that's all that matters now. They are in your arms.
Let me boast on the strongest woman I know for a second though. My little sister, whom I may usually make fun of for crying when she stubs her toe, went through a hellish induction process, high blood pressure, hooked up two IVs the entire time, AND stocking and leg massagers while in labor and still had an unmedicated vaginal birth, with everything going against her. We're laughing about it now but it was straight up awful. Homegirl was hooked up from every limb, and had to have her blood pressure taken every 30 minutes and endless amounts of blood drawn. Heaven help us.
Jeff, my mom and I had to unplug her legs, roll her IVs along with her, every single time she had to pee, or move, or anything. She was also on magnesium to prevent seizures which made getting out of bed not much of an option. After a good 20ish hours of pitocin, her water broke, and 4 1/2 hours she was ready to push. LIKE A CHAMP.
We all took turns with cold clothes, holding her legs, squeezing her hand, and cheering her on. Her I can't do this! I'm going to die! Was responded with you are doing this, and you are going to live.
At 1:02 she screamed and cried, and with one last push, her son entered this world. The three of us surrounding her, were a mess...with tear stained faces, catching our breath, telling the girl we loved that she did do it! He's here. He's finally here.
Judah Timothy Joseph entered this world at 1:02 PM and he is absolutely perfect. His little 6 lb 14 oz body is smaller, by pounds, than any child I have ever birthed. Rin is thankful for that, I'm sure.
I felt like I may have had postpartum depression myself leaving the hospital. EL OH EL, but for real people. I kinda still feel that way actually. The birthing center in a hospital is a magical place. We're huddled together, with the people we love the most, waiting to bring a new life into this world. All the feelings are felt. You fall in love with nurses, eat too many baked goods. Crunch on the best hospital ice ever and listen to the music you love the most. You laugh together, you cry together, and then you hold that baby you love so much together.
Judah's dreaming about his awesome hair. Or awesome Aunt Danielle. It's a toss up.
I had a three hour car ride home on Sunday night. I drove in the dark and the entire way home I listened to John Legand, All of Me, on repeat... thinking about how much I love family, and my precious new nephew. This may be a strange song of choice but I kind of feel like it's the most perfect song in the world right now.
Welcome to the world, Judah! All of me loves all of you.