Middle’s Birth Story – Written by Oatmeal

I guess it is somewhat fitting that I’m taking a break from a John Wayne marathon to write a birth story for my little boy.  I’ve always imagined that we’d have a son, but now it’s real.  I already have a running list of work for him to do, and I’ve already had a close family friend promise him a horse and a calf.  Every time I call someone to talk about his entry into the world, I nonchalantly add that he was born here at the house.  It’s not a testament of anything that has to do with me, but a simple and pointed brag about how awesome my wife is.

Just before 4am I opened my eyes to a tap on the shoulder and Lola telling me that she thought it was time.  The night before, my mom decided to spend the night just in case Lola went into labor.  After I brushed my teeth, I walked over to the guest room and gave the same news to my mom.  She was happy to hear it, and Violet was on the road to Gommy’s house in minutes.  She had dreams of horses and swimming the whole way there I’m sure.  Now it was just me, Lola, and our soon to come little baby.  The only thing that would make this situation any more like I had imagined it, is if we were in the middle of nowhere, surrounded by Apaches, who are at my home out of respect bearing gifts to a new warrior being greeted into this world.  Instead, we did have a midwife Toni, assistant Candice, and doula/photographer/placenta-pill-maker Rachel.  Not a bad team.

Lola and I have been through this once before, but it was in the hospital.  All of her heavy breathing, mobility needs, deep concentration, and personal stage of laboring were seared into my brain.  Before I went to bed she went into the cleaning, putting up dishes, making desserts, have to get ready stage.  I kind of had a feeling that we were in for the long haul when I saw her shuffling around the kitchen cleaning things we haven’t seen since our wedding.  When she woke me up around 4 am, she had already been in the “this is really happening” stage for a while.  Being the wonderful wife that she is, she had allowed me sleep and started getting her mind prepared by timing her contractions and concentrating on having a smooth and complication free labor.  In my opinion, her confidence in this stage was the key to a healthy Lola and baby.

When our midwife pulled up around 5 am, I left Lola’s side in order to help Toni get everything upstairs.  14 trips later, we brought everything up except the car, so I think we were ready.  Candice followed a little while later, so we all decided to just sit around, hang out, drink coffee, and talk about birthing babies.  I didn’t have a lot of experience, but I can hold my own in any birth ball placenta eating circle around.  After my second cup, I noticed that Lola had entered the “I’m gonna go have a baby on my own” stage.  She went walking up and down the stairs, through the hallway, and finally ended up in the shower.  Once I saw this, I sent Rachel a text that she would be needed soon, and to bring more coffee on her way to the house if she didn’t mind.  I had already told my family that we’d have a baby by lunch, but things were progressing right along.  I’ve seen enough animals give birth to know that when they start hunting a spot to deliver, it’s almost time.  I thought we were going to have to lock the doors to keep Lola close, but that wasn’t necessary.  Rachel found her way in and now it was time for the rest of us to help this dream become a reality.

Once Lola got out of the shower, we all knew that this was it.  Her face was determined and her breathing was getting heavy and deep.  We watched in awe as Lola took the labors of childbirth in stride by shedding just a small tear and letting us know that our overdue present would soon be here.  Lola crawled up on the bed, using the birth ball as a rest, and began to slowly push the baby out.  It really only took four pushes.  They were four, long, hard, determined, strong, and beautiful pushes.  The first was to get the baby close.  The second allowed for Toni to help move the cervix for the baby to get his head through.  The third got the head out, and the fourth delivered the body.   Since Toni was catching and Lola’s position wasn’t convenient for anyone to see, I had to step back from rubbing her back to get a peek when his head came out.  When I saw his face, I immediately got a big smile on my face.  I was thinking it had to be a boy, but I was also just so happy to see our little one.  I wanted to see if he was going to come out kicking and screaming into this world like Violet, or calmly taking in his surroundings and making sure all was well.  He came out quietly in command.  Toni attended to his nostrils in case he needed help getting some of the fluid out of his nose.  Seconds later, Candice announced it was a boy and Lola was able to put her arms around our newest addition.

While taking in some quick milk, Toni asked what his name would be.  I looked at Lola and told everyone that it would be John.  A strong name for a strong little boy.  He’ll get his strength from his momma for sure.  Each birth has given me the same feeling of respect, joy, love, and gratitude.  What an incredible blessing that I have for a wife.  I really can’t imaging being able to go through this with anyone else.  Thank you honey.

Now that the Apaches have dropped off their gifts, it’s time for me to begin teaching him his many skills and secret knowledge passed down from generation to generation.  Violet has been progressing well as you all can already see.

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