Happy Saturday! It is the day 11 years ago today when I first became a mom. When I first held The Girl the first thing I said was “she is so pretty!” I have never called a baby pretty before that but that is what she was! It was a beautiful moment! I had prepared myself for so long for birth to be perfect. Which it kind of was but kind of not. I had planned to have a natural birth at a birthing center not a hospital. When my water broke my contractions did not start so I needed medication to get them started. Which meant I had to go to the hospital. I was not sick, I did not want to go to the hospital.
Once my contractions got started and I was progressing in my labor I was told that if I wanted to I could be transferred to the birth center but I was not going to get in a car and drive anywhere with contractions like that! I had back labor. Luckily I also had the Hubs and as a Massage Therapist I specialized in pregnancy massage and at the time, I also taught Massage School so I was able to tell the Hubs what to do to help decrease the pain of contractions. He held my hips with his knees and compressed in. I was kind of on all fours when he was doing it. He is strong so once I got in the birth tub he was able to just hold my hips together with his hands. He was a great support and was great at pushing me when I needed it. The Midwife complimented us on how well we worked together. We have always made a good team!!
I was in labor a long time. My midwife had come in about 3 or 4 times to say it was my turn to deliver. I think she had assisted in a couple of C-sections and delivered 3 babies during the time that she thought I would be delivering which was about 5 hours or so. She kept saying ok another baby out now it’s you turn to see your girl… At about 2:30 am (Interesting side note: that is about the time that all the girls who were over for her sleepover last night finally went to sleep) my midwife had me get out of the Birthing Tub to check me and maybe talk about a plan ‘B’ to get this delivery going again as it had obviously kind of lulled. So I got out of the tub walked across the room and onto the bed. She looked at me and both her and the Hubs said “Well look at that we won’t need a plan B this baby is ready.” We just need a shift in gravity I guess. My response was “Really, How much longer?!” I was ready to be done. I in no way wanted an epidural or a C-section but I was thinking that may have been her plan b and I ready to be done, I was exhausted! I had, at that point, been in Labor for 28 hours. I did not know yet but I had almost (only) two hours left. She was born with no pain meds naturally at 4:14 Sunday Morning May 2, 2004! She had Strawberry blonde hair and blue eyes and was so pretty!
When she was born I had thought in my head that it would such a great feeling of accomplishment when she was born. A big smile of excitement and relief. But it was more of a slump like oh my owrd that was hard! I had done it naturally! NO pain meds! I should have been celebrating and happy and have this feeling of success. But I didn’t I was tired and overwhelmed and yes happy but felt like I didn’t do it well enough. However just the simple fact that I did it really does make me a badass! Wish I had the energy for the fist pump and happy dance. Just giving birth is badass enough, let alone doing it naturally! I was able to enjoy and be happy once that baby girl was on my chest and I got to see her, hold her and feel myself fill with love and joy of a hard job well done!
Delivering a baby takes a lot out of you. But it puts a lot in you as well. There have been many times I have done many things that my motivation was that I gave natural child birth. I was in labor for a total of 30 hours. The only thing close I can determine is running a marathon I have done half marathons and that only takes me 3 hours max. I did my first half marathon about 5 years ago and felt the same way at the finish. I was happy but could not quite muster a smile so much because I was too slow not good enough…
Motherhood is a lot like my journey of delivery. Planning for the best way and things not going as planned but in the end the result works out. The journey is not always exactly what we wanted so we kind of feel like we failed. We are human and we are all flawed and are secretly perfectionists so we struggle to see the good things that happen because it didn’t go quite as we planned it. Not that it isn’t good enough or even awesome. We as moms need to realize just giving life is amazing and it is okay to celebrate that, no mater how the experience went. You grew a baby inside your body for 9 months. Your reward is painful in delivery but joyful for years to come!
Then as we grow and mature in motherhood we struggle more each day. We get tired in life. Sometimes it is okay to celebrate just the fact that our kids are not dead at the end of the day. Small victories need to be noticed! The Girl was a fussy baby and I felt like a failure. Now she is a preteen and sometimes a bit of a diva and I feel like a failure in those moments. She has one quality I am so glad that she does and that is picking her friends. I wrote a letter to her when she was still in the womb that said I wanted her to develop good boundaries and not let people treat her badly. She only picks friend who are nice to her and people around her. She had a sleepover last night with 7 girlfriends and they had no drama. They all played together, no power trips, no drama. I am proud of her for that. I will celebrate a win for that!
When our first child is born our motherhood is born. We are just as young as they are let’s give ourselves some grace. In every moment we moms feel like we failed or didn’t do a good enough job remember that. I can look back now at the birth of my baby girl and say I did a great thing that day. It is hard for me to even say I did anything, she was the star that day! Welcome to the world Little Girl! When I was pregnant I wrote her a letter and I think it might be time to have her read it. Some of the things I wanted her to know and understand and not get mixed up in the drama of life and she has not! I love that she is confident enough to just not hang out with people who don’t treat her or others nicely! I hope as she discovers the preteen and teen years that she will continue her strong confident journey to becoming a better woman more confident woman than I am.
Happy Birthday to my girl!!! Have a great Saturday everyone!