On the afternoon of December 3rd at 40 weeks and 3 days pregnant I was resting my huge, tired body when my 3-year-old came in with flowers. I was so touched, I got up and reached for them and as I did – SPLASH – my waters opened! I felt my heart skip a beat and the hair on the back of my neck stand up. After weeks of feeling that “any-moment-now” feeling, it was finally happening! I stuffed some cloth diapers in my panties and cleaned up the wet mess on the floor. The air was ripe with excitement as Pat bustled around to make sure everything was ready and I talked to Malu about what was happening. I suspected that my water breaking meant labor was imminent. I was wrong. For the rest of the evening, I waddled around in cloth diapers while amniotic fluid leaked from my body, but nothing much else really happened.
The following day began as it always does in mom-life: awake before I’m ready and jumping into action to get my toddler ready for the day. My body was definitely preparing for birth, but things were happening so slow. My body surged through contractions every once in a while which kept lulling me into a deep state of awareness beyond this physical reality.
Around midday, we called my midwife to join us. She came and held such a loving and unobtrusive presence. As the day went on I could feel myself going deeper and deeper into the portal. We walked around a bit, but I was in “mom mode” and I think that really kept me from surrendering fully into birth mode. I needed some time alone. Things were getting more intense, but I was still feeling my emotions. Still attached to my physical reality and I knew I needed to let go more. I went out on the back deck by myself. I looked out at the vast ocean and attuned myself to her vibration.
I ate a whole durian to myself and I really believe that is when things started to shift. I felt myself slipping into deeper states of consciousness and the surges began coming on stronger and more frequently. I called upon Pat every time the surges came on. I needed his hands on my back. I needed his presence and his energy to merge with mine to feel safe to surrender more deeply. I spent a lot of time in the shower with the water pounding my back. Exhaustion kept knocking and I had to continue to breathe deeper and push farther into the mystery.
Not letting the physical experience be too real, and staying lucid instead, it was around this time that my lovely midwife announced, “Okay I think you’re officially in active labor.”
I think we all laughed at the moment. It was getting to be late afternoon. I moved around slowly from couch to yoga ball and back to couch. The sun was setting, and I could start to feel the babies dropping and engaging. Yes, I was having twins.
My midwife began to prep the tub and I told her I didn’t think it would be necessary. I could feel my babies were really close to emerging. I positioned myself with my knees on the floor leaning against the couch with my upper body. The intensity was unreal as I locked eyes with hers and murmured something along the lines of, “I don’t want to do it anymore.” She looked at me with so much love and reminded me I am already doing it.
The details are blurry here. I had my people around me. Pat was near my head holding my hand, my dear sister Michelle was cheering me on from behind and thankfully taking some photos and videos. My birth team was gentle and supportive as baby A started to emerge. There was no pushing, only surrendering. There was no pain as the force of the universe moved through me in waves. Baby A’s bum emerged, then one leg, then the other. Slowly, slowly his torso was born. Everything moved in slow motion. I felt everything. It was simply phenomenal. He rotated s l o w l y, his own innate knowing guiding him. I was encouraged to bow forward as his chin was born. For a moment he wore me like a hat. Then with a final surge, he was free. A wave of relief washed over me as he made his first cry. I sat back and took him in. A BOY! A squishy, pink, very vital little boy.
Very soon I felt the surges come again. I handed Kukui to Pat who held him and sang to him as baby B began to make his arrival. It all happened so fast. Again the surrendering, the letting go, the waves of creation moving through. Suddenly Baby B’s entire head emerged in one wave. A head! This little wise one decided to flip around with all the space in there and come out head down! Two more surges and baby B was born. Skinny, bluish, and a BOY! TWO BOYS!
These moments are hazy as relief washed over me and I relished in the reality that my babies were here. WE DID IT!!! I moved onto the couch and held them.
TWO BABIES!!! Two very different babies.
Image Credit: Shine Simmons