We’ve been a family of four (five if you count the dog!) for a couple of weeks now.
I finally had time to go through the photos from our son Benjamin’s birth and wanted to share some of my favorites, along with his crazy birth story!
Caroline’s birth seemed like it would never end and I was a more than a little apprehensive about how her brother’s arrival would go.
I woke up around 5:30 on Sunday morning (June 18th, Father’s Day!) and needed to pee, like all pregnant ladies do!
On my way back to bed, I felt what I thought could be a contraction. I’d had lots of Braxton Hicks contractions the night before, and tried to ignore this one and go back to sleep.
However, these contractions felt different. These were definitely not the same thing as before. They started to hurt a little bit and I woke Matthew up to tell him about it.
I also called my parents, who were supposed to come into town later on that day. I let them know that things may be starting and that perhaps they should start making their way to our house from Macon, where they had spent the night.
I texted our awesome doula Shari and let her know that contractions had started, but there were no other signs that I was in labor.
With Caroline, my contractions had started on a Monday and she wasn’t born until Thursday evening.
In my head, I was preparing for another long labor and hoped that the contractions wouldn’t get too painful too soon. However, the contractions did get painful- very quickly.
I tried getting into the bathtub to see if that would slow things down or help the pain. It didn’t do either of those things.
At some point Matthew took over texting Shari and just when I thought that the contractions were more than I could bear alone, she appeared at our house like magic!
After a quick assessment of the situation, we realized that it was time to get moving, pack up the car and get to the hospital.
I was fairly nervous about getting into the car to go because I was in a decent amount of pain and knew I wouldn’t be able to move much in there.
Once Matthew was done loading up the car, I stood up to go downstairs to leave. At that point I felt the urge to push and told him and Shari.
Then Shari looked at me and said “You are not going to have this baby in a car. We’re staying right here and you’re going to have this baby at home.”
Although having an unexpected home birth may sound scary, in that moment I was so relieved.
I didn’t realize how stressed out I was about the ride to the hospital until I didn’t have to worry about making it there.
Shari called another doula, Margaret, to come over as backup to help us. She arrived just in time!
Matthew’s mom was in town for a quick visit and the timing ended up being perfect.
She was able to come over and hang out with Caroline after she woke up and distract her from what was going on.
One of the things that surprised me the most about Benjamin’s birth was how easy it was to just let my body do it’s thing.
Shari and Margaret definitely helped with their encouragement and their reminders about relaxing!
Instead of laying back in a bed like in the hospital, it was so helpful to be able to move around and work with my baby to bring him out.
The contractions were the most painful part, and thankfully they didn’t last that long!
Only three and a half hours had passed from the first contraction until the time Benjamin was born into his proud Daddy’s hands.
It was an exhilarating and emotional experience for all of us and most definitely a Father’s Day to remember for Matthew!
After Benjamin was born and his umbilical cord was cut, we rested together in bed for a while. Soon after, I got up and took a shower, which felt AMAZING.
We snuggled in bed for a little bit more, and then Matthew went to get Caroline.
She had no idea that her brother had been born already, we just had her come in the room and discover him in my arms.
She was so surprised and then so excited to meet him and give him the kisses we’d been talking about for months.
We all hung out and relaxed in bed for a bit and my mom was able to take some photos for us.
A few hours after the birth we decided to get ready and head over to the hospital.
It felt so weird to be walking into Labor and Delivery with a baby already in my arms, but I was glad that the hard part was already over!
We spent the night in the hospital and Benjamin and I both got checked out. Once all of his tests were done and we were given the all clear, we went back home!
Although a home birth was not what I had planned on, it ended up working out beautifully for us.
My recovery has been SO much faster, which is definitely helpful now that I have two sweet babies to take care of.
I can’t thank our doulas, Shari and Margaret, enough for all they did to help us during this whirlwind event!
Our parents have also been amazing in helping us transition to our new life as a family of four!
Matthew is an incredible father- watching him love and care for his children is one of the best parts being married to him.
We are so happy that our baby boy is here!!!! We love you Benjamin! You make our family complete.