EIRA MARIE

Nybakt mamma Jennifer forteller her historien om sin hjemmefødsel, da lille Eira Marie kom til verden. 

(Hun er kanadisk, så den er skrevet på engelsk.)

(klikk på bildet for å komme til neste / click on the image to see the next)

Eira Marie’s birth story

I was awoken just before 3 a.m. on Sunday, March 15th by rushes that seemed to be coming regularly and kept me awake when I tried to lie back down. After a few trips back and forth to the bathroom, I settled in the kitchen and began to time the contractions. I was in no hurry to wake either my partner or our midwife, Annett, thinking perhaps it was false labour, and wanting to be sure. After about two hours of timing the rushes, and noting that they were regular and seven minutes apart, I awoke my partner, Frank, telling him that I thought something was going on. We were both excited at the prospect of finally meeting the little person that had been growing in my belly, and finding out whether it would be a “he” or a “she”. Having been raised with a midwife as a mom, and having heard countless stories of how variable birth can be, I was quite calm, thinking we probably still had many hours ahead of us. I did not want to slow down this early labour by focusing too hard on it, so instead, we began to clean the house, set out pans, pots and recipes to make a cheesecake and stew for the “birthing crew” (ourselves, our midwives and photographer Maria), tend to a few last emails to work, and cross off items on our “to do before the baby comes” list. Frank was looking quite tired, so I suggested we go back to bed and get some rest. I changed my mind almost immediately, realizing it was not possible to lie down through the contractions. Shortly after that, I woke Frank again. At around 6 am Norway time (10 pm in Canada), I called my mother, wanting to talk to her and tell her the news. I asked her if she thought it might be time to call the midwife. She listened to me tell about my progression and heard me work through a few contractions, but noting the time, she advised me to wait until 8 am and let the midwife sleep for another hour. Mom suggested getting in the shower to help with the contractions. That sounded like a good plan, so over the next hour, Frank proceeded with the cleaning, and stopped to help and support me through the contractions, which began to feel stronger, and come more closely together. I managed to get in and out of the shower twice, not realizing that mom had meant I should stay in the shower. At 8 am we rang the midwife, Annett, who talked me through a few contractions, and agreed to come within the next two hours. Frank sent a text to Maria, to let her know that something was afoot and that we thought the baby might make its arrival today. Annett arrived just after 10 am, as Frank was assembling the birthpool in the livingroom and I was working through a particularly strong rush in the bathroom while trying to get into the shower again.  To our surprise and delight, when Annett checked me, I was 6 cm. We sent a new text message to Maria, telling her the news and that it was time. She hopped in her car and headed for Oslo shortly afterwards to arrive at our flat shortly after 12 (mid-day). 

At 1 pm Annett checked me again between contractions while I labored in the birthpool, and found that I was 10 cm. I was so happy, knowing we would soon be meeting our baby! Time seemed to have warped, with the hours between 3 am and about 1 pm feeling more like 2 hours in total, rather than 10. The contractions picked up in intensity shortly after Annett checked me, as did the need I felt for Frank to be near and support me physically and emotionally through each one. It felt so good to hold onto him, and to feel his hand on the small of my back during the height of each contraction. At 14:27, at the end of four strong rushes, little Eira Marie rocketed/torpedoed into the sunny birthpool, with me supported by Frank from behind, and midwives Annett and Kristina giving encouragement and physical support on either side. She surprised us all with her alertness and gentle, wide-eyed gaze as she emerged from her caul and the water into my arms. The fact that she was a girl was another wonderful surprise.

With the intensity of labour now behind us and holding the prize of all that hard work, I noted, laughing and elated, “I could do that 10 times again!”.