Robin's birth story
Pregnancy had been fairly straight forward after early concerns and many of our visits with Julia were spent allaying potential fears and mental or energetic blocks. This was my second child but first in Devon and with Julia as my midwife.
My waters broke in the evening as I was going to bed. My husband and I decided to try to get as much sleep as possible and so went to sleep. We awoke in the morning with contractions becoming obvious and getting stronger and closer as the morning progressed. We spoke with Julia a few times as things progressed and around lunch time decided it was time she came over. I remember pacing a lot and finding I wasn't comfortable to sit down. After a lot of walking up and down, willing the baby to come and trying not to slow the process as I had done in my first birth I became tired and my legs were shaky.
My husband and Julia set up the birth pool in our sitting room with lovely warm water, calm music and low light. Getting into the water was such a relief. I felt supported and the pain and fatigue was reduced.
Contractions were strong by now but I was still able to talk to my 18 month old daughter, who was in and out of the room with daddy, and reassure her that all was well. I wanted to keep the birth moving on and tried to relax and open myself with each contraction rather than holding back as I had done before. Sure enough the contractions came stronger and stronger until I felt couldn't keep up the calm and in control impression for my daughter and not wanting to alarm her or distract myself with worrying about her I asked for daddy to take her out for a bit.
Julia was sat on the sofa nearby. She was quietly observing
and was so unassuming as to seem part of the room itself. She did not interfere or bustle or question, she seemed to simply be there - in the most present, listening, checking and yet unassuming way.
I remember groaning with the strength of the contractions and still telling myself I must allow it to progress, get stronger, be more painful, open, surrender, do... And yet it was becoming hard to want that. I began to tell myself not to panic, to worry about it after the next contraction, just focus on this contraction as if it were the only one. I remember looking over at Julia in the dim light, wondering how she was so calm.
Then, at that point of starting to feel it was too much, I got the urge to push and the relief of realising I was so much further along the journey than I had allowed myself to believe was wonderful. After some pushing, kneeling up and leaning on the side of the pool, I began to feel for the crowning head of my baby! I could feel it coming and going with contractions and was able to regulate my pushing with breathing and panting to lessen the push and avoid any tearing. Julia asked quietly if she should call my husband and daughter back and I said yes. She called quietly to them. The contractions continued and then the head was out, in my hand, under water. I said, the head is out, call them louder... Is he alright down there? Julia reassured me he was fine. My husband and daughter entered the room, another contraction came and Robin was born.
I caught him myself. No one touched him until I handed him to my husband much later after he had fed.
We were so blessed to have such a perfect birth and Robin was calm and quiet. I feel confident that had there been the need, Julia would have intervened. I had asked that she leave me be as much as possible as long as all was well and she did. I felt free and independent and yet safe and cared for. I feel blessed to have had such an independent birth experience with the safety and care of an expert in the room. Julia was the perfect midwife for me.
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