I had started and stopped and started over several times, trying to write about Brianna’s birth. It’s hard. A lot harder than I had thought it would be. Like being a MOM. Which just happens to be the first word my three year old keeps writing over and over again. Maybe one day I’ll be able to finish the love letter I started for Brianna.
I’d tell her about how I sensed that she didn’t want to be born at the hospital when we went to register. How I switched from a Dr. to a Midwife team in my 35th week. How
scary and exhilarating just the decision was to make. Once made, it felt to be the right thing for us…
Then came your birth, little Brianna. It seemed forever in coming as one winter day after another was spent chasing after your sister. Megan would smile shyly and tell anyone who would listen that when she was a grown up lady, she would have a baby growing in her belly too.
I felt so full of life but I couldn’t stop shaking when I called our midwife, Sandy, at 2:30am to tell her it was time. We met her at the hospital to get my IV antibiotics started. It was warm and quiet and sleepy there. Sandy asked your Daddy and I if we wanted to stay as my contractions were only a few min apart. I asked you and rubbed my belly. I felt confident that you still wanted to be born at home, so we left the hospital.
I wondered why, as Daddy and I drove home along the sparkling icy white streets. Daddy’s heart raced as contractions came faster and faster. The whole world seemed to be awaiting your arrival. Sandy arrived at our home with so much medical equipment to keep you safe. As they were unloading, I had three contractions back to back.
Sandy checked me and called Margaret to come quickly as I was 8cm already. My sister crawled in bed with Megan and my Mom arrived. The contractions got intense and I couldn’t keep walking. They came so hard and so fast as you fought your way out.
Suddenly I realized I was pushing. Margaret encouraged me and Sandy listened to your heart rate. At one point, I felt like I would pass out, and they reminded me to breath. Daddy held me up and shook with me as you finally slipped from my body.
The half second before you took your first breath seemed an eternity. The world stopped and all I heard was my pulse in my ears. Snowflakes swirled silently. Then you cried an angry little cry and we breathed together. You looked like a little sumo wrestler all chubby and bald and you were a girl! You surprised me. I had told everyone that I was sure you were a boy. You were placed on my belly all wet and warm. You stopped crying and blinked at me as I wiped you and cuddled you.
I can’t find the words to tell you how in love with you I am. How empowered and proud of your birth I am. You were just shy of ten lbs. Your father was excitedly telling everyone who visited our house for months how you were born RIGHT THERE! He was so proud of both of us. His mother arrived just as you came into the world. Our moms made tea and breakfast as I received stitches. Megan awoke and blinked sleepily at the quiet excitement. And you simply nursed and slept.
As the sun rose and the snow sparkled, we grinned and welcomed you. Family was all around us and peace lulled us to sleep.
One day I hope to have the words to tell you how magical and perfect and right in every way your birth was. How my eyes tear up when I smell your warm skin and kiss your milky cheeks. I think your peaceful birth has instilled or simply preserved the peace steeped within you. You are a content and wise baby. An old soul who was able to tell me so strongly what was right for you. Maybe some day I’ll be able to share this
Love, your mommy.
Marie Boichuck is co-owner of Coexist Design Inc. A website design, hosting and technical services company. Tel: 250.751.2238