So… it’s now over 72 hours after the birth of Jack Benjamin Midence and the flurry of activity is finally slowing and my head is clearing.
Jack Benjamin Midence was born 5-15-12 at 8:01am, 8lbs 1oz. All went exactly as planned, born in the aft cabin of our 44 foot sailboat Kitty Hawk, assisted by midwife Nicole Lavallee, and ending with a professional catching job by his proud papa. I would not change a thing. It was so nice to be in my own home, an environment I’m comfortable in, for the birth. I delivered his 1 ½ old sister Marietta in a hospital in Honduras, and while I had a good birth experience there, I would choose a home birth for its comfort and intimacy. There is no deciding when to go to the hospital, no torturous car ride while in labor, nobody making me change from my comfortable clothes into a cold gown, basically no rules. I could move about as I wanted, or not.
My water broke at 9:30pm and we continued watching 24 on Netflix until I could no longer concentrate. The midwife arrived at 1am when my contractions were about 4-5 minutes apart. Then it was just the waiting game. At 6:30am I was feeling the time was near and we went to the aft cabin where the “delivery room” was all set up. Things progressed and just as I was in the middle of what would be my last push, the phone rang. Now, I love both sides of my family dearly, but in that moment I was in a less than chatty mood. Just in case there was any question in my husband’s mind as to what he should do I let him know, in what I admit was probably a slightly elevated volume, that I didn’t care who it was: under no circumstances should he answer that phone!
At 8:01 am out came our little Jackito and landed in his papa’s arms. What a wonderful moment hearing that first cry and seeing those little eyes wide open. Just as we were checking to see that it had been my husband Jack’s mom who had called, the phone rang again. This time it was my parents. Obviously all of little Jack’s grandparents are very in-tuned with their newest grandson. After a few minutes spent telling my parents the good news, we had to hang up. After all, we hadn’t actually gotten around to cutting the umbilical cord yet.
The press activity post birth has been overwhelming. I’m not one to look for attention and it’s taken my sister Megan many, many years to convince me to start blogging about my life. Many of the online articles about our sailboat birth have made me laugh out loud, telling how we were sailing by Charleston Harbor when I went into labor and we pulled in and called a midwife. The truth is a little less fantastical: this was very carefully planned out and we have been docked at the Ashley Marina in downtown Charleston for 2 months awaiting the baby’s arrival, the whole time receiving prenatal care from our OB doctor and midwife. For some reason people just can’t seem to grasp that having the baby on a sailboat was my plan all along!
Though our specific plans morph and change, sailing is definitely in our family’s future. Crossing the Panama Canal and spending some time in the Sea of Cortez is currently at the top of the list. Stay tuned!