I can remember the day I became a mother like it was yesterday. And I guess in the span of a lifetime and just how fast time is flying, three years ago is pretty much like yesterday.
At about four in the morning my cramps were pretty pronounced, but that had happened about a week before and no baby came so I just got as comfortable as I could and slept through it. At 5:45 in the morning I knew that cramp was DEFINITELY a contraction and that the day was finally here. I was excited and it was three days past Jae’s eviction date (and that notice had been posted for a good three weeks at that point).
I quickly woke up Joshua to tell him the exciting news. He jumped up, and then laid back down. In all fairness it was early so we laid in bed and cuddled some more while I made calls to my doula and my midwife.
As I lay in bed with my husband, having contractions and back pain, I could only think one thing… “ I want my mommy!” Luckily for me my mom had already decided to spend the night “just in case”. I guess momma always knows.
So I went and climbed into bed with my mom and instantly she knew what to do.
By the time my doula got in, breakfast was ordered and the “Jess is having the baby today” calls were made.
Sidebar: My Doula was one of the best decisions I could have made. She was there for me. I didn’t get the true value of this until the day of birth, and everyday after, when I realized there’s a lot of moments where mommy doesn’t come first. So having someone there who was more concerned about me than the life inside me was meaningful, especially when I was more concerned about the life inside me than myself.
When my doula arrived she sprung into action giving me messages and guiding Joshua on what he could do to support me.
I had a birthing plan, which mainly included staying home as long as possible, not being trapped in a hospital bed and certainly not being starved until I squeezed my sweet baby out. So home, where I had all the snacks and food I needed within arms reach, was where I needed to be. I also didn’t want anyone rushing along my birthing process.
I will spare you all the hour by hour details but I can remember being in the house all day with family coming in and out, mainly my sister-in-love, mom, husband and Grandma (Joshua’s paternal grandmother). I can remember when my doula, against her wishes let me sit in the most comfortable chair and rubbed some pressure points that helped in labor, it started to feel like a massage in some spots and I had been up early so I fell asleep while watching Annie, the remake. I remember it all felt too good and comfortable, I was woken up by my doula asking, “well when was your last contraction?” I sighed because my sleep was busted up, but she kindly reminded me I said I didn’t want to be in labor all day. So she said it was time to move. I went for a walk and then a shower after. That shower…oh that shower, if you have ever been in labor then you know getting in the shower is the gift and the curse. But after that shower it was time to go to the hospital.
We all loaded up into the truck, my husband, my mom, Grandma, and myself and headed out to the hospital. When I got there my doula was there to greet me and Joshua went to check me in. I can remember the hallway was quiet and bright white, the nurse came out to get me and showed me to my suite and let me know it was time to change. At this point my cramps were closer and they started asking me questions, too many questions like they didn’t know what that last set of contractions were all about. I looked at my doula like “get this lady before I do”, and she graciously started to answer the questions on my behalf.
Cut to some time later and I was only 8 centimeters dialated (which had me like “really?!?!?” because I was 3 centimeters dilated for like 2 weeks. So my midwife came in and let me know we should break the water. I was down for it! Anything to get this unruly tenant out. She brought out the longest crochet needle looking object and I thought “where’s she putting that?!?!”
She said “on 3” and on 2, water came gushing out. It was so much water the doula and the midwife jumped back. My midwife let me know she had never seen so much water. Jae was an average size, if not small baby and I had gained 50lbs over my pregnancy, clearly much of it was water weight.
I looked at the nurse and I said get the doctor now or I’m pushing without her! My nurse Nina, was amazing. She said “you sure you ready?” and I said “yea” and on my first push she looked at me and said “Now you told me to get the doctor because you were ready to push, this isn’t pushing.” Then she said “now bare down” and looked at my husband and said “make her do the work”. He was holding my leg and I was definitely letting all the weight go on him.
My midwife brought out the prettiest full body mirror, but it was for me to see what I was doing. Nothing like seeing the crown of your babies head to motivate you.
On October 30th at 10:51pm, I was officially given the gift of motherhood. Daddy caught his baby, and they laid her on my chest. She came out so peacefully and calmly laid there. There was so much movement and everything else was going so fast, but for this moment time stood still, the world was quiet and all I could hear were the breaths of Jae Elle Jordan.