My thoughts in the last few days are of those greatest moments in my life... The birth of my 6 children. This is a longish post but I wanted to write it down for posterity's sake.
Nicole made me a mother first. I was working as a 2nd grade teacher during her pregnancy. It was a tough delivery. So tough that I overhead the nurses say, "This women will probably never have any more children after this." The cord was wrapped around her shoulder and during contractions her heart rate would go down. I had no idea it would hurt so much. I was so naive. But after holding her and feeling that deep love for her I would definitely do it all over. She is the best first child. I am in awe of her and the great example she is to her siblings.
Next came the twins. I felt so excited and blessed to be having 2 babies. While pregnant I read How to Handle Twin books but stopped because the work load I was in for scared me. I started to get stressed out. This delivery was my only C section. The babies were transverse, meaning across and not head down. Lauren first and Andrew above. During the pregnancy I would get kicked and punched constantly by both of them. I was huge!! The delivery was great, no pain. The only bad thing was that I couldn't hold them right away because they had to be taken to the nursery to be checked out. They were fine. Just small, 5 lbs.6 oz. each. But that's actually a pretty healthy weight for twins.
I had German parents so of course their grandkids would have to wear the official German clothes. Lauren (2), Nicole (4), Andrew (2)
Then Heather. At the time I was thinking... "should I have any more children?", I didn't have to think anymore-- turned out I was already pregnant. Her delivery was the most calm and really a beautiful experience. A friend of mine was a Labor and Delivery nurse who helped me tremendously. I was calm and well cared for which made for an easy delivery. Heather was so alert after she was born and was nursed within seconds of being delivered. So great to start that bond immediately. Heather and Nicole are a lot alike, almost like they could be twins just 6 years apart.
I was pregnant here. I do like this picture of me because even though I'm not wearing makeup and I didn't really do my hair I have that pregnancy glow. Love that glow!
Then came Angela. Her's was the only pregnancy that I didn't feel well. I was so tired. I thought it was because I was getting older. We don't know for sure why I went into labor at 21 weeks but I think it was because the cord was attached very low and she wasn't stable. I delivered her before I wanted to. The doctor gave me lots of meds to stop labor but it came instead, hard and steady: she was going to be born. She was 10 inches long and not quite a lb. Randy and I held her for her entire life on earth. She received her body and as I was holding her, she closed her mouth and when she did I heard a big breath. Like the breath of life. We were able to give her a name and a blessing. She was so tiny in my arms and lived for 2 more hours and then stopped breathing.
Lastly Tyler. After Angela's birth I figured I was too old and my body just couldn't have anymore children. Although I desperately wanted to have another baby again, I never told anyone. I was around 5 months pregnant when I felt that familiar baby moving feeling. At first I laughed and said no way, it can't be. I hunted around and found an old home pregnancy test that I decided to take just because--Shocker.! It came back positive. What?? I went to the doctor to confirm: Yes, I'm pregnant. No way, I'm 42 years old! There were no problems and the blessing was that by the time I found out I was pregnant it was past the time that I lost Angela. It was a tender mercy because I would have been crazy stressed out and oh so worried.
I had nothing for a baby. No crib, no clothes, no car seat. I started shopping for prom dresses and diapers at the same time. Tyler's was a hard delivery. I was 10 centimeters for 5 hours. He wouldn't come down. I came so close to having another C section but I held on through the pain. What a blessing he has been to me and the rest of our family. I never knew I needed him until I had him but now having him, how could I have lived without him?
My little boy delivered to me from the hospital nursery in a stocking. He was born just a few days before Christmas. What a gift!
Well that's my birth stories. I would suffer the pains of delivery again and again to have my wonderful children. I love being their mother and revel in what my body as a woman was able to do. Motherhood is what I was created to do.