My labor started on Saturday afternoon
and the baby was delivered
on Monday, at 1:02pm.
Hey, there’s no “war story” here,
that’s just how my body handled
labor the first time.
It was long,
took more strength than I was sure I had,
and there are distinct memories
of being exhausted and telling my support team
I’d had enough
and just wanted to go home.
No kidding. I was done.
That day is long since past,
but that day was
I can do hard things.
Finding my core strength
was like finding the ark and the covenant
in my own soul.
Once I knew it was there,
my personal growth increased
and into this morning,
I attended a birth of a new mother--
with cinnamon hair and angel-kissed-face--
she’d prepared as much as possible—
getting to know her subject as best as she could,
all her best efforts poured into
becoming a Mother.
Mama Z. was the picture of calm
tuned into her ipod, “hypnobirthing” scripts;
she was nearly silent—
nodding her head in appreciation
for the light massage her attentive husband,
Papa Earnest* provided;
or shaking her head when it wasn't helping,
swaying her hips
in rhythm with the waves,
We learned her birthing language
as tho it was our
As with most first babies,
this new one took his time
coming into the world.
He was in no hurry to greet
wet diapers, hunger,
and frigid air.
When Mama Z. is checked for dilation,
fingers and toes crossed
for the Golden Ten Centimeters!—
but she is just
Seven centimeters, not what she hoped—
we've all been there, right?
Hoping we're closer to the finish line
than we actually are, hunh?
That’s when her heart needed
we soothe her body with
ice-chips and massage.
We fill her ears with
“You can do this!”
“You were created for this.”
“You will not run out of energy before this day is thru!
You have all the energy you need to see this to the end!”
We cheer and we pour our hearts into this
vulnerable trusting woman,
who's discovering her own strength
in the wee hours of the morning.
Then the stars align,
the clock ticks faster,
and before she knows it,
a curly head is out,
his shoulders are free
and his hands are flailing
until one rests on Mama Z.’s tummy.
Her eyes are still closed.
“Hold his fingers.”
I take her hand and place it on her
son’s tiny hand.
Her eyes pop
her mouth is wide open
in a glorious smile
and with Papa E.’s help,
she pulls the baby to her warm bosom,
like she is the very first woman
to ever have a baby!
And she is in L-O-V-E! LOVE!
“Hello!” she greets her wiggly boy.
already protecting his sacred family,
his personal treasure.
part of birth arrives.
That part we mothers never talk about—
the part where the uterus—
having been stretched over the period of
given the strenuous work-out-
our marvelous uterine muscle
is then kneaded like a ball of dough!
It was at this moment--
when the nurse began her kneading--
Mama Z. was taken aback by the whole new pain
she’d never felt before—
Her eyes fixed on mine,
“You’ve got this. You just delivered a baby.
This is just part of birth. You can do hard things.”
Her eyes lit up,
“I can! I can do hard things! I’m a Mother!”
She returned to her “labor breathing”
and let the nurse do her thing,
resolved in her mind that
her strength would not fail her.
And understanding that empowered her!
So the time came and I packed up to go—
our wonderful nurse and fantastic midwife.
And then I leaned over to Mama Z,
“You did great.
You had the strength you needed for every bit of this.
You can do hard things.
Don’t ever let anyone take your strength away from you.
Let it sink in, soak in and become part of your identity.
You are a strong woman and mother.”
The sunrise was just barely hitting the top of Pike's Peak
when I left the hospital,
the mountains were just barely glowing
and the world's just waking.
Lingering thoughts on the drive home
stir around and settle in:
Women are stronger than we think we are.
We have the power of creation, wherever we choose to use it...
in the home, in the family,
in the world around us.
We are Divinely Designed for
whatever the Lord wants us to do!
*Mama Z is not her real name, but she was so “in the zone” that it fits.
*Papa E is not his real name, but he was every bit as "earnest" as could be!
photo courtesy: It's my own!
She's livin' the dream in the Colorado Rockies and blogs it all at Momza's House.