My very first blog post – How exciting! I can think of so many places to start, and yet the words don’t come quite as easy as I would like them to. For years I have been wanting to write about the two most thrilling moments in our lives up to this point – the moments our children were born.
I will never forget the month we decided that we were “ready” to have a baby – Hahaha… yip, we were “ready”. So out the door went all the contraception. After all, it takes most couples an average of 6 months to get pregnant, right? And that gives us time to sort out all the itty bitty details to prepare for parenthood…right? I just can’t help but smile as I am typing this. How young and innocent we were. So imagine our surprise when 3 weeks later I started vomiting, not being able to keep my eyes open during the day and only capable to stomach fruit salad. We went out and bought the test but kept it for the next morning. At 4am I was woken by what seemed to me like a torchlight piercing through the haze of dreams of little babies everywhere. It wasn’t a torchlight. It was the Morningstar. I had left our curtain open before we went to bed that night, for some fresh air. And when I saw that star, I KNEW.
Fast forward 9 months to the day I started getting contractions. “Don’t worry” the midwife said, “You have plenty of time! You will KNOW when you are in labour” Ha! We decided on a homebirth so we had the comfort of knowing we wouldn’t have to go out to hospital when labour picked up. So my brown-eyed hunk and I made ourselves comfortable and got into bed at around 11pm.
3 Hours later I was woken by the most horrific back pain, and the only thing I could think to do was panic – the one thing we were told NOT to do. But our midwife was still at her house, and I could feel that we really didn’t have the luxury of time that it would take her to drive all the way to us. Thank goodness we didn’t plan a hospital birth, because we wouldn’t have made it there in time. The midwife rushed over, all the while giving instructions over the phone to Brown eyes who was running between the kitchen and bedroom, trying desperately to get everything ready for the midwife, but also to be with me for every panic-filled contraction, as they had progressed to being about 2 or 3 minutes apart. Finally, our midwife walked in the bedroom door and said “Okay, you can push now!” And of course, I was so relieved to have her there, that I completely relaxed and my labour came to a very disappointing halt. Nonetheless, at 4am we welcomed our little warrior boy into the world. At 7am all the action was over, all the towels and sheets were in the washing machine, I had a shower, and we were both back in bed with this little human in between us. And Brown eyes and I looked at each other and both uttered the same words… “What now?”
Fast forward again 5 years and 3 miscarriages later (I will write about these at a later stage). I knew this time around how I didn’t want the birth to be. I didn’t want to panic. I didn’t want to be without my midwife. So we opted for a water birth at our midwife’s home/birth centre. On April 15 I dropped my little warrior off at his playschool, drove home to where my mother in-law was busy in our kitchen – She had kindly come to visit for an extended period of time so that we had someone close by to take care of big brother while we were at the clinic. I am sure my mother in-law and I were both equally frustrated at that point, after all, our little song threatened to come early a couple of weeks before, and now she was still staying put. I had had contractions for dayyyyyysssss, and nothing seemed to progress. I was ready, but I was getting tired of waiting. We spent the morning in almost complete silence, just waiting, walking, waiting, bouncing, waiting… That evening I went to fetch brown eyes at the train station, and I had my little meltdown. Right there in the driveway. I just started crying, moaning and crying some more. “WHY WON’T THIS BABY JUST COME!?” It was at that moment that something shifted. Suddenly the contractions grew closer together, and within a very short period of time they had gone from 10 minutes apart to being only 3 minutes apart. It was time! But I was in total denial. Brown eyes was packing the car and I was sitting in the bathroom, telling him to STOP. “I am just feeling emotional”…” My body is just reacting to my tantrum”… “This is not IT”. I didn’t want to get to the midwife (a 20 minute drive, by the way) only to be told that this is false labour. So I argued, and I refused to get in the car, and I CRIED. But he won, we said goodbye to little warrior and Ouma, and we were on our way. About an hour later our song was born. It was the most beautiful birth. We didn’t panic, we got there just at the right time, the water was a lifesaver, the midwife was an angel. And Brown eyes, well, he was a superstar. I remember watching him throughout the whole process, and he was praying through all of it. He was right there next to me, he was looking in my eyes, and he was in conversation with the Creator of heaven and earth, the Creator of this song that we were about to meet.
And then there were four. I am so in love with how God is weaving a tapestry, with each one of us such a different colour, but He is making the most beautiful picture. Brown eyes, the rock solid leader of our pack, gently leading us in God’s grace and Word. Little warrior, the deep thinker, the realist, the kind of kid that at a year old had that grown-up look in his eyes – and sometimes in his words too. And last but not least, our song of God, the little hummingbird that flutters around the house, singing and dancing and who, every now and then, climbs onto the coffee table, puts both hands in the air and shouts “Hallelujah”.
Hallelujah indeed. The scenery along my road has been dry at times, it has brought moments of heart wrenching sadness, moments of wanting to turn around and try a different road, or just wanting to get off the road altogether. But along the way, I have stumbled upon two magnificent Pockets of Beauty