2010 BABIES – a thank you

2010…what a year!! Ups and downs and all around – but that’s one of the joys of midwifery: it’s never boring!!

I’d love to take a moment to say thank you to the miraculous moments I have been allowed to take part in this past year.

LENA (1/10): You were my first baby of 2010 – why were you in such a hurry that you couldn’t wait for me. I talked to your mama just an hour before you were born and she sounded fine and said she wasn’t even sure if you were coming that day…and the very next call was your daddy saying he could see the top of your head. You little stinker…I need more time than that to get to your home!! What an entrance…and such a cutie!

CHARLEE (1/30) AND ELIZABETH (1/31): Both first babies for your family, both born in the hospital. Even though your birthdays are a day apart, your moms began working for you to be here at about the same time and kept me on my toes! I am sorry to your moms that things didn’t go the way they had hoped and that both of you had to be born in the hospital – but you little ladies were so worth their sacrifices!

PORTER (2/6): Another first baby! Your father was cracking us up with his excitement! I don’t think he stopped talking the entire time your mom was in labor! And wow did she work hard for you….I am so glad she was surrounded by the love of your daddy as well as their doula! She thought you might be born into the birth pool, but you had your own ideas and insisted up on the birthing stool that we bought.

JETHER (2/14): And yet another first baby! My little Valentines day baby boy, born into mom and dads hands in the pool in their family room. I’ll always remember your perfect and furry little arms….so cute!

JAMESON (4/5): My toughest birth of the year emotionally – wow. You were the first baby for your mom and dad, and your birth is one I can never forget. Transporting to the hospital because your head was crooked and having the cesarean was disappointing….but mommy ending up in the ICU with a severe infection that turned septic and almost dying was the closest I’ve ever come to losing a mother. Truly terrifying…but a testament to how strong your mama really is!! I’m glad the story ended well….wasn’t sure for a while there.

ELIANA (4/14): The last of my first-babies in a string of 6 in a row….and did you made us wait! Going almost 43 weeks before deciding to come out and join us! You tested everyone’s patience…but nobody more than your mother! With your daddy sitting behind her in the birth pool, you swam into the world and into their hearts. All that waiting just fizzled away when we saw your face and we knew it was all perfect!!

CARTER (4/18): You were the first baby I’ve ever had born while family watched – through SKYPE! Big sister might have slept through it, but your aunt didn’t want to miss a moment. Grandma held your mom from behind while your dad helped lift you up out of the water….so peaceful, so beautiful.

BROOKLYN (4/29): First babies usually take the longest, but you seemed to be in a hurry! A fast labor for a first time mommy, a little water-baby! Daddy wasn’t sure how involved he wanted to be in your birth, but he rolled his sleeves up and caught all 10 pounds of you as you swam into the world! Such a cute little girl…

JACOB (5/5): Okay, if I thought Brooklyn was big at 10 pounds…you were going to make her (and every other baby born this year) look little. Not quite my biggest baby I’ve seen born….but it’s still remarkable! 11 pounds 8 ounces of baby boy born in the caul…a memory I will treasure for always!

ANDREW (5/18): Okay, so I have to admit that one of the first things I said when I saw you was that you looked exactly like your daddy! Yours was the most well-documented birth I’ve ever been at! There were probably 20 cameras stations in various spots throughout the home! You were a superstar before you took your first breathe…that’s how excited they were to meet you!

HARPER (5/22): What a super fast birth next to the bathtub in the bathroom! Took me a while to catch my breath from that one….but your mama is a superstar! What an honor to know you and your family!

AVERY (5/30): I worried about your birth probably more than any other this year…because I love your mama so much. I just wanted your birth to be as peaceful and perfect as a birth could be! Your hypnobabies mother made it look so easy, patiently waiting all day, then pushing you out into the pool and into your big sister’s waiting hands. It was an honor to be there and I was so happy that you helped give your mother a smooth and straight forward birth – you joined a pretty dang amazing family little boy!

TRU (6/3): I laughed along with your mom throughout your birth! What a joyful day that was, her smiling just moments before you slipped out into her bathtub! Beautiful music playing in the background, the smell of the amazing candles that lit the room, the love shared between your parents….does it get any better? I don’t think so.

CAMERON (6/3): fast birth with a strong mom….and if that cord hadn’t been so stinkin’ tight around your neck and the shoulder sticky stuck on mommy’s pubic bone, your birth would have been what we call a “butter birth” (slips out like butter) as you slipped out into the bathtub….but because of that cord, you came out with a little blueberry face. I felt bad for you, but you didn’t seem to mind and melted your parents’ hearts.

AMELIA (6/6): I was almost as your big sister’s birth! Hee hee…..but she came too fast. I’m so grateful they called me in time for your birth and I got to watch you slip into the world while your mom was on hands and knees on her bed. So cute, so perfect….such a blessing! You picked a fun family – I know your life won’t be boring!

ERYN (6/14): Baby #11 for this family!! To watch your mother in the blow up pool ask God for direction, and then turn to you while still in her belly and say, “What do you need me to do baby…” before gently pushing you into the world….just breathtaking. I was so moved by witnessing their faith, their strength, and their love.

SILAS (6/27): The only baby that made my pager go off!! I made note of the fact that the cell phone coverage in Village Inn off of Signal Butte and the I60 is horrible!! Thank goodness you were a first baby because that gave me plenty of time to get there and prepare for your arrival. Your mom went through so much to have you…but she was so strong through it all! Pushing you out on the birthing stool, then given grief from her placenta…but she persisted and never gave up. I only hope that she realizes how strong she was and that you are gentle with her as you grow…

ORION (6/29): You wasted no time joining us! Fast and furious were the words of your birthday…..but also touching and transformative. Between the sensitive heart of your mother, the patience of your father, and the protectiveness of your big brother (with his TMNJ mask!)…how can you NOT have an awesome life?!? So glad I could be there for the beginning of it!!

BELLA (7/15): Your big sister was so challenging on your mother that she was a little nervous about your birth – but it turned out that it was unwarranted! Your birth was smoothe as silk….slipping into the birth pool just minutes after she began pushing you out. You were even born in the caul….most cultures say that means you will have a blessed life! I could have told them that because I know your parents and your sister…you definitely will have a blessed life!

PIPER (7/21): I almost made your birth! If you’d given me a couple more minutes I could have been there….but you know what?! I wouldn’t have it any other way!! Your mother was instinctive and empowered and discovered that she is an incredible force to be reckoned with! Fantastic!! Love it!

JACK (8/12): Since you were her third baby, we all thought you’d slip out super fast! Little stinker, you decided to crank your head to the side and make her work HARD for you! But her patience paid off and you slipped into the world and into their lives with grace and joy. Your mom says she was humbled….we were in awe.

FELICITY (9/3): Another birth stool baby…I don’t think your feet were out before your mama was on the phone announcing your arrival! She just couldn’t wait to tell people that you were finally here! Who can blame her…they had waited so long for you, worked so hard, and were so glad you were finally here….not the waterbirth they had thought, but beautiful just the same.

CHARLIE (9/6): It was late in her pregnancy when your mother contacted me, and at first I wasn’t sure what to think or how it would play out. As soon as I met her face to face I knew it was going to be great…and it was. Born into the bathtub and welcomed by your daddy’s hands…..immediately snuggled into your mom who giggled with tears of intense glee. Thank you for guiding your mother to me and allowing me to bear witness to your gentle entrance into this world.

BRAYDEN (9/8): By the time I got to your home, your mom was surrounded by your dad, grandma, and doula….and she was preparing to welcome you very soon. I had the perfect amount of time to set up and wait for you…but not for long! Born in the water, you immediately looked up at your mother like, “What the heck just happened?” I think maybe she was feeling the same way….hee hee. So perfect!

MCKINLEY (9/12): Alright missy….I have a few grey hairs on my head I have named after you! Your tiny little mama was truly one of the STRONGEST little firecrackers I’ve ever had the pleasure of knowing….and obviously you got your strength from her. Such a scary beginning….you were so sleepy and didn’t want to wake up or even breathe. I’m so glad you decided to finally join us and that all 10 pounds of you are so incredibly healthy and perfect. Definitely my most challenging birth this year…but also the one I feel like I was able to make the most difference with. I will forever remember you and your family and the incredible faith they showed on the day you were born.

LUCY (9/13): Your mama looked like she was napping while in labor (and maybe she was?)….nothing for me to do except catch you on the way out! But that HAIR! You had the most gorgeous thick black hair I’ve ever seen on a baby!! You looked to me like God had put a black HAT on your head! So cute…so incredibly cute….

HAILEY (9/19): All night your mama worked for you…and then all day….fighting for every step forward until it finally stopped moving forward. And still she worked…so many hours…so very many hours….fighting and working. I think you were inside with all four limbs outstretched, refusing to come out….because you simply refused until she surgeon brought you back into the OR and did a Cesarean. It was a rough day, but your parents are strong and held tight and it was so worth it!

LILLY (9/25): If your mother’s blood pressure had behaved itself, I believe you would have been born into the birth pool that had been set up in their bedroom. Instead we were all grateful to the Doctor who took your mom under her care and was so patient in waiting for you to be born without a cesarean. You are mommy’s little living doll and she enjoys dressing you up in the cutest outfits and hair bows. Be gentle with her as you grow too quickly….

AARYN (10/3): So yours was the most surreal birth I’ve ever attended….in 15 years. What do I mean by surreal? In all of the many hundreds of births I’ve been at – yours was the first one in which I could NOT tell that your mom was in labor AT ALL, couldn’t tell if/when she had a contraction because she kept smiling and talking the entire time….and only knew you were ready to be born because she simply announced, “It’s time”. I was truly speechless…and for me, that doesn’t happen often. I’d heard legends tell of a woman who birthed that way…..but didn’t think I’d ever see it! (hee hee) So awesome!

IRIS (10/10): I’ve thought long and hard about what to say to you, but am still having trouble finding the words. Once in a while someone enters your life that just engulfs your heart….that you respect and love and just wish you could absorb their energies. That is your mom and dad to me. I knew you would be a special little girl after getting to know your family, and I looked forward to your birth so much that I think I actually giggled out loud on the way to your home when I knew you were coming. Neither you nor your family disappointed…I was moved to tears more than once and touched deeply…down to my soul. Watching your daddy with both hands outstretched waiting for you to swim out to him in the pool while your mom did her final push was spectacular! Thank you!!

JOSSLYN (10/11): Your mom waited for a LONG time after you broke your water before finally admitting that you needed help coming out. She knew she had done everything she could and we are all glad that they were able to take good care of all of you in a way we couldn’t at home. What a beautiful baby girl…

JOSEPH (10/15): Alright kiddo…I knew you were going to be a good size, but 10 pounds 5 ounces? Wowie! Your mother delivered you from her body into the bathtub and into daddy’s waiting hands…we were but witnesses on their spiritual journey. Perfect face, perfect fingers and toes…and a thrilled big brother and sister. Just perfect in every way possible!  I watched your mother, who had never had a homebirth, discover her own strength in herself, her body, in you, and reaffirm her faith in God.  Awesome.

ELEANOR (11/18): My birthday buddy!! What a birthday gift you gave me…at least I (barely) made it for your birth! Your daddy’s words while waiting to watch you will forever live inside my heart…the love in his voice as he says to your mother, “Push her out…give her to me!” just melts my heart. Wow. An honor to be there and to know your amazing family. Your mother is one of the coolest and most warm-hearted people I have ever met.

ATTICUS (11/20): After seeing the challenges your big sister gave your parents when I was at her birth, I was praying that you would be gentle on them. A few false starts…but when it did come time for you to be born you were very sweet and were as gentle and perfect as a baby can be! Thank you for that and I can’t wait to see you follow in the footsteps of your big brother…

LANDIN (11/22): Another 10 pounder…but once you got a peek of outside life it was like you didn’t want to come out because once your head was born your body just held on and didn’t want to come out without some gentle encouragement. But out you did come…and joined your VERY excited older brother and sister…and a thrilled mom, dad, and midwife! Your mom just snuggled you on her bed and couldn’t believe you were 10 pounds!

ASHER (12/5): You will forever be known as the baby that “cut the line”! Hee hee. A few other babies from our support group called “Nurturing Bellies” that we thought would come before you, but noooooo,…..you decided to come 2 weeks early! I am so glad you chose such a strong mother because even thought we know that you first babies are usually going to give your moms a challenge…you were especially demanding! But your mom is strong and listened to you and did everything just right and your dad welcomed you with his hands while your mom sat on the birth stool. A little peanut you are…but you will grow quickly to your parents’ delight and sorrow.

REAGAN (12/10): Your mom was strong despite her desire to hold you and she gave you the patience you needed to choose your own birthday! Your dad may not have watched your big brother enter the world…but for his little girl, he loved on you and stroked your hair before your head was even born. So loving, so gentle…so much joy you brought that day. Your doula was at your brother’s birth, too, so I bet it was extra special to watch you join us as well! I love your mom – and when you get big enough to talk, please look up at her just once for me and say, “COW POOP!” It is guaranteed to make her laugh! (I’d save it for a day when you get into trouble….it could save your life if she’s on the edge of strangling you! Hee hee)

PAUL (12/11): Born in the water in the glow of the Christmas lights lit on the tree….peaceful, glorious…as a pre-Christmas birth should be. We toasted you joining us Earthside with champagne while your mother nursed you snuggled into bed. Your mom and Reagan’s mom are friends, so we commended both of you for ‘waiting your turn’ (since Asher jumped the link and decided to be born first). We joked that you were a gentleman in waiting….but the truth is that you were born exactly when you should be (as were they). Your doula took enough pictures of your birth that if you put them together in a stack and flip through them it will probably play like a movie! Such a handsome baby, such a wonderful family.

JILLIANN (12/19): I was at your big sister Leann’s birth, so I figured you would be born in as gentle and smooth of a way. When your mom called to tell me that her water just broke, I knew I wasn’t going to make it in time! I got there was fast as my car would take me, but you were quicker than I and I didn’t get there until you were 3 minutes old. While I would have loved to have seen your entrance, I think it was perfect the way it worked out! Your Aunt was able to help you into the world, and it was fast and easy for your mother, and I got some incredible snuggles afterwards…why would I wish any different!

AVA (12/20): I called you my “little caboose” who finished off the train of babies in 2010. My last baby born of the year…and born a full 2 weeks after your due date! Beautiful doesn’t begin to describe the gentle way you were born into your mother’s bathtub….the excitement in your dads voice is what your mom remembers the most as his hands welcomed you. Everything about your birth would be described as “perfect”. Thank you for sharing your family and your special day with me…you have a very special family!

SPECIAL MENTION:  I can’t talk about all of the wonderful births without paying tribute to the 6 babies whose births weren’t to be.  6 mothers I helped through a difficult story of their own…6 disappointments….6 babies who wouldn’t be held but would be loved forever.  For those 6 mothers who lost their babies to miscarriage, you are also in my heart and prayers and I do hope to hear from you in the future with another pregnancy and another baby but with a different outcome.