November 16, 2016 —
I woke up to a text message early Wednesday morning from Lillian telling me her contractions were real, but still well spaced. It was the perfect day to have a baby and I was thrilled. I slowly got ready and decided to head up to Seattle and just hang out in the area until they needed me. I talked to her husband several times during the morning, and it seemed things were progressing slowly but nicely.
I decided to stop by Target at about 11am. I was only there a short while before I got a text updating me her contractions were much closer now. I checked out right away and raced to my car and arrived at their home less than 10 minutes later.
When I walked into the house at 12:15 pm, it was quiet but busy. So many people were compiled in the living room and kitchen, getting lunch plans figured out, video chatting — a happy buzz as everyone was ready and anxious to meet this new baby. Big brothers ran around trying to get a peak of their mom. I walked back into a quiet dark room with the door closed where Lillian was laboring to have her baby.
She was sleeping between contractions, and her waves were intense. The birth pool was being filled and her husband was sweetly rubbing her back to ease the pressure. As contractions continued, we reminded her to breath, relax and encouraged her as I quietly captured her. Her sister, Marion stayed very close to Lillian’s side as she moved into transition and Lillian suddenly demanded to know where her midwife was.
Shortly after, her midwife arrived and Lillian slipped quickly into the tub without even removing her shirt fully. Suddenly the room was full as it was apparent that this baby was coming very soon. Mother’s of all sorts, two sisters, a husband, me and the midwives.
Lillian would tell us she was done and didn’t want to go on any longer. We would tell her the baby was almost here and this was almost done. She labored strong and deeply. Her sisters surrounded her head, holding each of her hands and encouraged her with every wave. Her mother and husband applied constant pressure to her lower back and her mother-in-law spoke quiet prayers of praise in the corner.
Lillian expressed she was ready to push and not long after, the head was out. For one calm and simple moment, we waited. And then with the next contraction her daughter was born into the water and into her arms, at 2:26pm. A girl, the first girl. She was welcomed immediately by so many who loved her before they had ever met her, who had been waiting for her. Two big brother’s came in to meet their sister shortly after.
“And though she be little, she is fierce. “
This birth held so much women power, because it truly takes a woman to birth a woman. Welcome Vera Bea, we’ve been waiting for you.