Kathryn Emma’s Birth
by Nicol Miller
Kathryn Emma was born on November 19, 1997 as our three children (8, 5, and 18 months) watched in amazement. This was my fourth birth. I had three previous hospital births which were good experiences. We wanted this birth to be special since she was going to be our last child.
Tuesday night I went to my class for my Doula training. I was feeling great. I came home and the family was sleeping so I made a cup of hot tea and went to bed. That was the best night sleep I had during my whole pregnancy. At about 5:00am I woke up to go to the bathroom and felt what I thought was a rather strong contraction. I wasn’t sure because I had a history of preterm labor and had been feeling braxton hicks since my 30th week (this was my 38th week – my longest pregnancy yet). I waited through a couple of more contractions, called my husband at work, and then called my midwife.
The contractions were getting stronger so I woke up my two eldest children to help me with the 18 month-old. At around 5:45am, I called my doula as my son ran me a hot bath. My husband arrived an hour later and prepared the bedroom with a few last items we needed for our birth. I walked around the house, and went to the bathroom every so often so I could sit on the toilet during the contractions. My husband held my hand and helped me get through them. As the contractions got stronger, I focused on the intense feeling and visualized my baby coming out, which helped alot. Meanwhile, our three children sat quietly in the living room reading a book.
I went to the bathroom the last time and my water broke. I called out to my husband (the midwife had still not arrived) and as he walked in the bathroom he saw her head coming out. In shock, he ran to get the birth kit the midwife had left just in case (I had a history of fast labors). As he went to get the kit, I tried to raise my body off the toilet and onto the floor. When he returned, our baby was born into his hands. It was 7:09am. A few minutes later, the midwife’s assistant arrived. She let everything happen naturally and then my husband cut the cord. The midwife and the doula arrived soon after.
Going back to the morning of Kathryn Emma’s birth, I recall I felt so relaxed and at ease being at home with all of my children. Even now, I get tears thinking about the day she was born. My husband and I both cried as he delivered our daughter. It was by far the most uplifting thing that has ever happened to us.