I am overjoyed to introduce you to the newest member of our family, Annabelle Sarah Brajtbord!
She was born on Monday night weighing 7lbs 2 oz. She is very healthy and nursing up a storm. Marshall seems thrilled to have a little sister and is pleasantly distracted by having his grandparents around.
If you follow me on instagram, you may remember reading an abridged version of my labor with Marshall on his first birthday back in March. Just a few weeks ago, I finally took the time to write out all the details, and I added it to a new guide I created for you (it’s completely free) called Live More Weigh More: A Short Guide to Pregnancy. I highly suggest you read Marshall’s birth story, by downloading this guide, before you continue.
Given that I had to go to the hospital with Marshall after planning on having a home birth, and that our experience at the hospital wasn’t the best, you can imagine that I was very excited to have my baby girl at home.
On Friday, I started getting really high blood pressures, and by Sunday it was clear that I had gestational hypertension (a precursor to pre-eclampsia, a dangerous condition for pregnant mamas). Although I wasn’t in any real danger at the time, Jonathan and I have always been clear that home births are the best when everything is totally perfect and I am completely healthy. And given that Marshall was two weeks late, we didn’t think that our baby girl was going to be joining us on her own anytime soon, so we went in on Sunday night to get induced.
As you can imagine. I was devastated, scared and pretty pissed the whole weekend as I saw my pressures go up and up. I did everything I could to relax, therapy, massage, herbs, acupuncture… and even in my most zenned out state, the numbers were still high. I went through the whole list of things that could be holding me back…
Do I not trust my body?
Am I scared to be a Mom again?
Even… did I have a bad birth experience in a past life?
But what I kept coming back to is that “Birth Plan” is the biggest oxymoron, and I have absolutely no control. In one of the experiences that means the most to me, I had to let go… again.
So on Sunday we rolled into UCSF Hospital (where Jonathan works) with six bouquets of flowers, blankets, a cooler of food, 30 electric tea lights, an altar to the Great Mother and a whole lot of love to share with the staff, nurses and physicians
By Monday afternoon my induction was in full swing and we were off to the races. With the help of my husband, midwife, doula and the staff at UCSF (they mostly left us alone the whole time) I had just as an amazing labor as I could have imagined having at home. I mean, it’s still the most painful thing in the world, but I felt empowered, calm and incredibly grounded the entire time. A true “home birth” at the hospital.
As soon as she was born, I felt so connected to her (a feeling I didn’t have with Marshall) and the past few days have been amazing.
In hindsight, it’s so clear to me that I needed to have that experience in the hospital in order to heal from the last. I love how life works.
After the birth my midwife sent me this quote that I think just explains it all…
“Peace. It does not mean to be in a place where there is no noise, trouble or hard work. It means to be in the midst of those things and still have a calm heart.” – unknown
What I learned from this birth is although a perfectly decorated, calm environment (you should have seen the birth suite I had set up in my dining room) makes feeling grounded, spiritually connected and powerful easier, it is certainly not necessary. And most importantly, we can’t depend on it to find that place. We need to be able to call on it where ever we are, in whatever situation. Isn’t that the perfect lesson for motherhood?
Sending all of you so much from my growing family.
P.S. If you are pregnant, wanting to get pregnant or feeling like you want kids someday but are petrified about how you’re going to make it all work, I really hope you’ll download my new guideLive More Weigh More: A Short Guide to Pregnancy. It’s completely free:). Hope you love it. xoxo