Here is what I wrote about her birth:
"The evening of the 17th I had irregular menstrual like cramps. I thought it might be leading up to the real thing so I called my friend Ame who was going to be at my birth and the birth center to give everyone a heads up. I went to bed at nine.
On October 18, 2004 I woke up at 1 AM with a contraction. I piddled around, worked on the computer, had some tea. They were very regular but pretty weak. I could talk and walk through them. They got a little stronger so I thought I'd call the birth center. The midwife called me back and said she would sleep at the birth center but to call and come it when it felt right. I took a bath and thought it couldn't hurt to go to the center since the contractions weren't stopping but were still really mild. So I woke everyone up at about 3. We got to the birth center at about a quarter to four. My contractions were quite a bit stronger. I was on the monitor for about 15 minutes and only had 1 full contraction and a half one but then they let me get into the tub anyway (THANK GOD. I just wanted to be in the tub). Oh, I was 5 cm dilated.
I loved being in the tub. I got in at 4 AM. My sister put in a CD: Jan Garbeck's Officium. After that we listened to B-tribe's Sensual Sensual. There was a 3rd CD but I didn't really hear it at that point.
I don't really remember much at this point. I will have to ask the midwife. I do think it was pretty regular until about 5 AM or so? (A guess) I do know I moved around a lot more in the tub trying to find the right position--the baby's heart rate went down if I laid on my left side, so I avoided that. When I was at 9 cm and thinking how bad this was (but I wasn't begging for mercy just yet!) the midwife said I was almost fully dilated and I wanted to cry! I wanted to hear it was almost over!
I felt a lot of pressure and I think what happened was that as soon as I was dilated, I pushed! The baby's head came right out! There was NO break and NO crowning. Just intense holymother-something-is-coming-out--they said one push and her head was out but you know, I think it was really two or three. It was so fast I swear it felt like I was going to just bust open. (And I did tear a teeny bit. One stitch which she would not even have done but she said she figured I'd be on my feet a bit more this time... ) It felt like I was thrashing around and begging for help. I felt very desperate and not in control at all. It was SO weird to feel how strong my uterus was! I felt like I was just along for the ride and could not get off. I don't think they liked how I was breathing but everything was so strong and intense and I felt so helpless. My mom said she could hear me from the parking lot.
As soon as the baby's head came out, it was much better and I didn't want to push anymore. The midwife firmly said I should push the rest of the body out now and I did and she same right out. As soon as that happened, I felt instantly normal. I felt elated and surprised! My baby was so beautiful but also SO tiny (Fiona was over 8 pounds) and SO dark! She had this head full of dark hair, darker skin than her sister, and dark eyes. She had perfect little nails that reminded me of doll nails. Her skin was very dry looking and peeling.
I swear she smiled.
Then she cried for a bit and I held her close and we wrapped her up and just hung out for a bit while the water from the tub drained. She nursed a bit--maybe 15-20 minutes later? She was born at 6:22 AM. When we saw she was a girl, we gave her the name of Sophia Tyne.
The placenta plopped out with a token push maybe 5 minutes after her birth. It was very peaceful after the birth and she has been nursing really well. Recovery seems to be much faster this time, too.
Fiona was there for some of the birth. My contractions weren't as productive when she was there, so she spent most of the labor with my mom in the playroom. She missed the head coming out (it took the midwife by surprise, too! She said "oh there's the head!") because she was having a poopy diaper change (ha! so typical of life) but she saw her sister coming from me out of the water into my arms. She did keep coming in the room to check on me (after the REALLY loud noises she kept asking if the baby was here yet?) and to talk to my friend Ame who explained the noises and what was going on. She would leave when she saw that everything was normal and all right. She has been very sweet and curious about her new sister but has become quite possessive of her daddy and is acting out a bit more in small ways."
I am so glad of the presence of the people there...Doug, Fiona, my mother, my sister Ellen Aim, my friend Ame, and the midwife who not only delivered Sophia, but also delivered Fiona, and most unfortunately, is no longer practicing at the birth center. It's a real loss; she is a fabulous midwife.
Happy Birthday, Sophia.