So here is our birth story.
Wednesday morning I woke up relatively late and rather emotional. Slowly, I got my things together and went for a walk in the neighborhood. I felt some cramping and I knew something was different. I felt slower and more focused in my movements. But nothing too intense was happening. I had told my mom that I was going to stop by for dinner that night so I stuck by that. Around 3PM I got on the train to go into Manhattan and I thought to myself… “Wow for all intents and purposes this is early labor and I’m riding the G train! Something is weird about this.”
I arrived at my moms and for about 3 hours and laid on her couch dosing in and out and noticing that the cramping was becoming more intense. When she got home for work I said with confidence, “I’m in early labor.” She made us some soup- and we ate. A few times I had to get up to move around because the cramping felt so intense. I called Joey and told him as well. He was with his father and they offered to come get me in his car. At around 8 they came to pick me up and by 8:30 we were back in Brooklyn. Just us two! For about an hour I began cleaning frantically, giving Joey orders to do this and that, and his laughing at me was somehow comforting! We both knew something amazing was about to happen! Now the cramping became more and more intense and as that happened I became less and less aware of what was happening around in and more focused on all the sensations. And sensations there were!!! Joey followed me around the apartment as I continued to put things away making sure I was drinking- at a certain point he began cooking and the smell on the frying onions made me feel so sick- and I announced loudly- “please make it stop”
He did. The smell lingered though.
Around 11 Joey said softly- your friend will be here soon. Almost mysteriously. Or so it seemed. And 5 minutes later my doula walked through the door. By this point I was breathing very deeply, moaning and rocking my hips to cope with the pain. Yael was incredible. She began by pressing on acupuncture points to help with pain. Shortly after she arrived I felt a sudden and urgent need to vomit- she pressed on PC 6 and some other points for stomach counter flow… She never left my side. Not for one second. At 12 the midwife and the midwifes assistant came over. At this point I was in another time and space. I had never met Loretta the assistant before and I was in no place to introduce myself then. All I could do was breath- the space btw contractions was more than a few minutes. Marcy examined my cervix and when I asked her rather desperately how dilated I was she said you are definitely dilated but lets not focus on numbers. I later found out I was 5 cm when they arrived. Laying down was horribly painful. I mainly leaned over the crib in my bedroom and swayed my hips and Yael pressed on my pelvis. The midwife was still mainly in the background at this point. She did at one point come in and say that all the up and down from the bed to standing was making it harder and I needed to find a position and focus. As the contractions became more and more intense she also told me I needed to focused less on pushing from my throat- which I was doing and more on pushing the baby out. Sometimes all the uploading of information was overwhelming and other times helpful. My water still hadn’t broke. Marcy said she could feel it like a hard balloon needing to pop. Joey and Yael continued to massage me, keep me hydrated and remind me I could do this. When finally something changed:
Marcy suggested I go in the bathroom and sit on the toilet alone for a while! I did! It was in the bathroom, in the dark, alone that I finally connected to my baby. I said- this is a team effort and we are going to work together! We can do this. Shorty after my water broke. I heard a pop. I reached my hands under and I could feel my babies head!!! I could barely get up but slowly I did and I made my way to the bed! Now Marcy said I was really ready to push! Yael and Joey each held a leg back and I pushed. I’m not entirely sure for how long- all I know is I did! It took all the focus I had but I did! I pushed and pushed and pushed! It’s true. Knowing that women have been doing this for centuries and centuries gave me the quite reassurance that I could too. I never asked for drugs during labor- I did however think about it for a second- but in the midst of pushing I vaguely remember asking Marcy if she could just pull the baby out! I kept pushing and it was Yael’s words the really helped here. Her elation and the expression of what she was seeing made me know I was getting closer. I pushed and pushed- and finally the head came through. I was seconds away from seeing my baby!!!! And finally she was here! They wouldn’t tell me if she was a girl or boy… I sat up myself and looked down. Most incredible moment of my life. After someone told me that right when she came out the first thing a I said was “it’s a girl”
She was born on OCT 31 at 5:28 AM.
Francesca Orienta Stasi-Perez. She is amazing…. So far she eats, sleeps, pees and poops. It’s only been three nights but this little girl has torn my heart open.
I feel so supported and so loved! Joey has been nothing short of incredible! Cooking, cleaning, and just being. Loretta, the midwifes assistant turned out to be one rocking chick and helped me a lot with the latch! Marcy came the next day and gave me one big amazing hug. My mom! I am surrounded by love! This adventure is amazing.
As far as the home birth is concerned: I never doubted it. It’s a quite conviction you have. It’s not in the intellect it’s in the soma. You just know- and you do it!
I am grateful for the women and Joey that never left my side. Not once. And I am grateful to this little one who wanted to be here and heard me and worked with me to arrive.
Can’t wait for us all to get together!
Your class was really helpful. And just your presence alone is calming. Thank you infinitely!
Giulia, Joey & baby Francesca!