When my husband and I found out we were pregnant after a short 9 months of being married, there were so many mixed emotions! We were of course thrilled to start the next chapter of our lives (sooner than expected of course, but excited nonetheless)! I was 20, and my husband was 23. There were a million questions and concerns we had; we barely knew how to take care of ourselves and each other! One thing I knew was I wanted to have my baby at home. My husband however, was a skeptic. That's when we made an appointment to meet with Karen and gather information. From our very first appointment things felt so comforting and right. I knew that I would get the kind of treatment I wanted AND deserved.
On august 8th, I woke up to contractions, but they were nothing new at this point. I figured there was no point in assuming I was in labor because I was POSITIVE I would be pregnant forever...just Braxton hicks AGAIN! Well, this time I was sadly mistaken. I had progressed throughout the morning and continued checking in with Karen. With my permission, she came to see how far along I was and check in on me (and as always, encourage me). We still had some time so she left and prepared to help support ME while I delivered my daughter.
Throughout the night I continued to labor and find new positions and activities that were most comfortable for me. We listened to hypnobirthing podcasts in candlelight. I used my yoga ball and took a shower and laid down with my husband until I was ready for the sweet relief of the birthing pool.
As I continued to labor in the pool, I was massaged during contractions. My husband, mom, Karen and her student midwife, Paige, made sure I stayed hydrated and energized and focused. Never once did I feel discouraged during my daughter's birth. When my back hurt, I had hands in front of me to help me switch positions. When I was hot from the 98 degree pool water, I had ice cold water rags being placed on my forehead; all while being told how amazing I was doing and how close we were to meeting our sweet violet.
At 4:07 am I birthed my daughter at home in a pool, in a calm candlelight room. Our worlds flipped upside down in the most breathtaking, intoxicating way. My husband and I had no idea the amount of teamwork and focus and determination having our daughter at home would take...but by the end of it neither of us had felt more filled and empowered in our entire lives.
The last thing I did that night was deliver my placenta. From there, Karen and Paige and my family and friend/photographer took care of everything else. Violet was weighed and measured by Karen and Paige. After, they took care of me and gave me directions until they returned the next day. I laid in bed and gazed at my beautiful daughter that I just birthed without medication, despite what society, my family and friends said. Our day finally came to an end around 7:40am on august 9th.
I will forever be so thankful for the encouragement and advice and hugs that I received when I SO so needed them. Most of all, I'm thankful for the friendship I gained with the woman who assisted ME bring my daughter into the world. I'm thankful we got to have a birth greater than I could have ever envisioned, BUT I know that babies and God also have their own plans sometimes. If our birth didn't go as planned, I believe I would feel the same amount of joy and love in my heart because of the relationship I gained with Karen and Paige. They helped me find a piece of me I didn't know existed.
My husband, myself and our daughter Violet can't wait to continue grow our family over the years with Karen by our side.