On July 1, 2010, at 1:37 am, Jeremiah was born. He has captured our hearts and I know that we will never, ever be the same.
Today Jeremiah is nine days old. The past nine days have been filled with happy moments as Michael and I begin to grow into our role as his parents. Seeing the gentle way Michael holds Jeremiah and the softness in his face as he looks at his son has been especially thrilling for me.
Jeremiah is still so new and we are learning more about each other every day. His sweet face is hard to resist and I find myself staring at him, willing him to open his beautiful blue-gray eyes. When I’m not staring, I’m kissing and smelling his sweet skin.
He has been incredibly easy to take care of and seems content to eat, sleep, and poop. He is nursing well and sleeping for 3-4 hour stretches at night. All in all, we have been pleasantly surprised at how laid back he seems to be. Of course, all that could change as the newborn sleepiness wears off.
A few words about his birth. Warning- if you don’t know what dilation or effacement is, you might not want to read any further :)
My water broke around 4:30 Wednesday morning (June 30). I hadn’t had any contractions so our midwife said to try and get some sleep and call back when the contractions were about 10 minutes apart. Within an hour or so I started having regular contractions and they picked up in intensity pretty quickly. By about 10am I was having contractions that were 5 minutes apart and were lasting at least two minutes. We waited a little longer and eventually headed to the Birth Center in Chapel Hill. At around 1:30pm I had dilated to 6cm and was 90% effaced. We were all very encouraged by this and even though I was in a good deal of pain, I felt really positive about how labor was progressing.
Unfortunately, my progress seemed to slow down after that. I was still having intense contractions (many of them double peeked), but my cervix just wasn’t dilating much more. At around 8pm, our midwife decided to help things along a little by slipping the remaining cervix over Jeremiah’s head. She was able to get me to 10cm within about an hour. At around 9pm she said I could start pushing.
And I did. For 4 and 1/2 hours. Little Jeremiah wasn’t face down and so it took a long time to get him rotated around into the correct position. It probably didn’t help that he was 9 lbs, 1 oz. There were times when it was frustrating that things were taking so long, but I’m glad that we were at the Birth Center. I felt so cared for by the staff; their encouragement and support was absolutely amazing.
I’ll be honest- labor was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. Physically and emotionally it was draining. But, I also have to say it was one of the most faith-filled times I’ve ever experienced. Michael and our doula (a dear, dear friend) were constantly encouraging me with their words and praying for me throughout the night. Michael was so strong and yet incredibly tender; he remains the most amazing person I have ever met. I’m so thankful for my little family and I know that, even when things aren’t as idyllic as they are now, I am blessed beyond measure.