The Beautiful Birth of Leah Kimiko
by Pamela Binkley
My name is Pamela Binkley and I have two children, one born in the hospital and the other born at home – our midwife didn’t make it on time so it was just my mother, my husband and I and of course our new baby. It was GREAT. I had complete confidence in my body and I wouldn’t say that the birth was effortless – but it was painless because I had no fear and trusted that my body knew exactly what to do. I believe that if you believe in yourself and understand everything that is happening in your body, giving birth doesn’t have to hurt. Almost everyone believes that childbirth has to be painful – I don’t!
I had my first baby when I was 17. The hospital staff treated me badly – that, I feel, was the reason for the pain I experienced. If I had been more informed and in more control over what went on, it would have been a lot better. My second birth, however, was much different.
At nine days past my due date at 12 AM my water broke in bed. I wasn’t feeling anything so I cleaned up and went back to bed. I tried to go back to sleep but I was just too excited and anxious so I got up and left my husband, Scott, sleeping. I went into the kitchen, read, drank juice and waited.
At about 1 or 1:30 I started feeling contractions. They were about 20 or 30 minutes apart. About 5 AM I woke my mom and called my midwife. She told us to call her if I felt I really needed her there or if the contractions became too painful or 5 minutes apart.
Well, Scott went to work, my son went to school and I went into the tub with sea salts. That felt great but I was tired so I went back to bed. The midwife called to check on me at about 8:30 or 9:00. She said I should get out of bed to get labor moving, so I got up, cleaned, made phone calls and talked to my mom. I played music, relaxed and breathed deeply through my contractions that were about 10 minutes apart now. My mom wanted to call the midwife but I didn’t feel I needed her yet.
At about 10 AM I felt I had to sit down, close my eyes, and breathe deeply and slowly through my contractions which were causing pressure now. I could feel the baby was very low so my mom called the midwife and Scott and told them it was time.
Scott walked in at about 10:30. I could feel the baby was in the birth canal so I told him to wash and change and get the supplies – we’d had them ready for about 8 weeks. I stood holding on to him with every contraction. I rubbed olive oil on my perineum and felt the baby’s head. I showed Scott and had a few more contractions standing and leaning on him. Before the head was all of the way out I really felt like pushing. I wanted to let the contractions push the baby out slowly so that I would stretch slowly and not tear. I was feeling pressure and stretching so I kept rubbing the oil on, breathing deeply, and concentrating on the birth.
Suddenly I felt the release of the pressure and was surprised to see that her head was all the way out. I felt like sitting on the birthing stool and I told my mom to get all the supplies for the baby ready. I had a couple of more contractions and Leah slipped into Scott’s hands. My mom called out the time – 11:04 – and Scott suctioned out her mouth and nose, wrapped her up and handed her to me. She started nursing right away.
My mom and Scott were almost in shock but I felt I was in total control of the situation the whole time. They had been depending on the midwife but I was confident that we could do it ourselves and was glad that we had gotten to do so!
The midwife came about 11:30 and let Scott cut the cord. I gave the baby to him and pushed to get the placenta out. Then Leah and I took an herb bath, and that was the beautiful birth of Leah Kimiko, 6-4-93.