For a few days I had been waiting to grab my bag and go. Anticipating a middle of the night birth, but was totally surprised to leave just as soon as school was getting out for the day.
Monday's are a good to do have a baby - the big kids go to school the rest of the week!
As I arrived at the Palmer home, the bigger kids were heading off to Grandma's house and Jeremy and Rachel were settling in for a night of relaxing labor and a new tiny babe to snuggle.
As 4:00PM came and went, Jeremy was getting the birthing tub ready and it was placed next the most perfect light under a window.
The walls were decorated with artwork from the older kids and you could tell this was a house full of love. Rachel breathed beautifully through each contraction, taking in strength and letting the pain blow away with her breath. Never missing a beat, just taking a small pause in the last minute nesting of her home.
Something about a belly mid contraction that is just so amazing to me, you seem to be able to see everything even if it is just the imagination.
After taking a quick shower Rachel called Stacey, her midwife, to let her know how things were progressing. She agreed to eat a little dinner and try to just relax.
Timing contractions and still working on the birth pool, Jeremy began cooking dinner.
Eating through the contractions was not as easy as Rachel made it look and eventually she took to standing, but did finish her meal!
The hose that fills the tub hooked to their kitchen sink and seemed to be filling as slowly as possible, and with each contraction rolling in, Rachel continued to silently breath though it all.
Stopping only to figure out what to wear, and joking that even her biggest swim suit top might not hold everything in. Folding some last minute blankets and changing the sheets, she was heading for the tub for some added relief!
Upon Stacey's arrival, they checked on baby and everything sounded good. The tub was STILL filling up and the hot water was running out, we started to boil a few more pots full of water and waited patiently for babies welcome to the world.
After a few solid and strong contractions, Rachel looked up and realized she forgot to take her vitamins, so with a smile and a laugh, she took those and continued on!
THIS...this is what a midwife is, this is what they do. They stay with you, they hold your hand, they calmly remind you to breath and speak with the most soothing of voices. A midwife is a special kind of person, one who cares deeply and truly, and loves unconditionally!
An assistant who was also at the birth along with a midwife in training helped with reminders to relax and breath.
There was soon to be a baby and Rachel had only barely spoke of her low back pain, and continued to breath and let her body do the work.
With Jeremy holding her shoulders and the amazing assistant pushing her back, Rachel peacefully delivered a beautiful baby, as if in slow motion she sat back and fully took it all in.
And with the first part of his body touch the air of this big wide world, HE was here and he was perfect! A sweet baby boy to even out the family.
And opening his eyes for the first time under water to catch a glimpse of his Mama, he still has yet to take his first breath...
After a BIG stretch and a few more silent moments...
A big look at his Mama...
He took a few silent breaths and then let out a cry, such a sweet sound, a baby's first words in this world, with his amniotic sack/membranes still floating around, everyone marveled in the wonders of a tiny human. And the Palmer Family now has 2 girls AND 2 boys!
Quite a bit of hair and and a pretty short cord, this baby stayed close to Mama until she delivered the placenta. Since the bath was now getting cold, they headed to bed to get some rest and enjoy those sweet snuggles from a tiny little vernix covered babe.
The first latch is something amazing, that bond has come full circle, nourished from the inside and now the out, a woman's body does amazing things.
A happy Mama who did AMAZING giving birth. Home births are truly wonderful and so incredibly peaceful.
With Dad's help, we finally got a photo of baby and the placenta that kept him alive and nourished by the cord that still had yet to be cut. It is absolutely amazing how life is created!
Mama cut the cord, breaking the long time tradition of Dad being the one with the scissors in hand.
And with a final weight and a few more vital checks, this babe is healthy and wonderful and ready to meet his family!
The thing about the youngest before the baby, they looked so small until you hold your tiny babe in your arms, then they walk into the room and look so big and grown and that in itself is something to cherish, the all-of-a-sudden growth in your second to youngest baby.
Welcome to the world sweet baby Kevin, you will forever be cherished and loved and forever be the baby of this family - own that role kid - you'll move mountains!