We joyfully welcomed Norah Dell on the evening of December 11, after a very swift labor.
I spent Tuesday with my husband, children, mother, and sisters, experiencing sporadic, start-and-stop labor. We went for a walk in the beautiful December sunshine, my sister and doula Julie stimulated my acupressure points, ate lots of nourishing food, rested, cancelled my acupuncture appointment and biophysical ultrasound because I thought labor was starting...
Then it stopped. And started. And stopped again.
We rebooked an appointment for acupuncture, and headed into town at 5:00 pm.
When we got home, I had a bath and a bite to eat, and noticed that the mild contractions I'd been experiencing all day were suddenly feeling a bit stronger. I got into bed and noticed that they were suddenly "regular" and that I was making some mild moaning sounds.
I called my sister Lana to check out what was happening, and shortly after we called Julie (who had gone home to check in with her family while I had acupuncture) and the midwives.
Again, suddenly, the contractions became much stronger, and before I knew it I was in full-on labour. It didn't take long to realise that the baby was on her way.
When my water broke, Lana called for my mother and Robin's mother (who had popped in to visit), and immediately saw Norah's head appear. In one or two more pushes, she was born into the startled hands of both grandmothers and her aunt. Her daddy was busy in the next room comforting her big brother, who was very frightened about the sounds I was making.
Norah was immediately placed on my abdomen, dried off, and we waited for everyone else to arrive. Julie pulled in the laneway at the moment of birth, and the midwives arrived about 20 minutes later. The umbilical cord was cut, the placenta delivered, and babe and mom were checked out and given a clean bill of post-delivery health.
Immediately after her birth.
Jude and Violet met their little sister immediately after her birth, and Margot slept through it all. She came down the stairs the next morning full of excitement, and quickly introduced herself to her new little sister. We let the big kids stay home from school, and they spent the day sliding outside, drinking hot chocolate with candy canes under the Christmas tree, playing board games, and taking turns holding the baby.
Birth is beautiful, terrifying, and unpredictable. This fourth labor was unlike the others in many ways, and Norah's arrival was more swift than even I could have predicted. She looks like a baby Snow White, and weighed 7.5 pounds at birth...my smallest babe yet!
I can't say we're all falling in love, because we're already there, completely and madly.
Thank you all for your well-wishes, thoughts, and prayers; this space will be quiet for awhile as we focus in on celebrating this beautiful gift we've been given at this blessed time of year.