I just have to start writing… but there is something so intimidating about a blank white fresh text field when I have such an Important Subject to record. Especially when I don’t really consider myself to be much of a writer. I don’t even like writing that much! Who knows why I love to blog? Maybe because it seems more informal, more like a conversation with friends (or talking to myself).

So I’m not going to try to make this into some monumental history-making essay, or try to make you laugh or cry or feel like you were totally there in the moment RIGHT THERE WITH US! I’m just going to write.

After two weeks of prodromal labor, with several episodes of hours and hours of really regular, strong, long contractions during that time… Monday July 26th at about 10pm I started having close-together contractions. Like before, it wasn’t anything I couldn’t talk through or walk through, but there it was. We were eating homemade graham crackers and watching the X-Men movie. It always seemed like when the contractions got really intense, they were in my back more than my uterus. And that HURTS. So we had to pause the movie several times for my sweet husband (T) to push on my lower back, or massage it, or for me to just drape myself over my yoga ball and whine a little.

After the movie was over, we went to bed. But I couldn’t sleep. The contractions kept coming — which was really no different than any other “intense” night I had had in the last two weeks. It wasn’t an “I just knew!” moment. I kept having to get up to pee, and when I lay down in bed again, my back would hurt so badly… it just wasn’t worth it to try to sleep anymore. Too uncomfortable.

So around 3:00, I woke my husband up so that he could help me with my back during the contractions. We went into the living room, and I found that the most comfortable position for me during contractions was to kneel facing the couch, and put my arms and head down on the cushions, so my back was parallel to the floor. Like a modified “all fours” position. Of course, with T pushing as hard as he could on my lower back.

I’m not sure what T was thinking, but my thoughts were along the lines of, “There is nothing different about this … except that now I’m 42 weeks and 3 days pregnant… EVENTUALLY I have to have the baby, right? Could this be ‘IT?’ Or is this just going to die down again and leave me still pregnant?” I didn’t want to call Coleen, our doula, because I really wasn’t sure it was going to progress into an actual baby being born. But after a while, T called her and she came over.

When Coleen arrived at 6:00am, things were still slow enough for us to chat and joke between contractions. I tried to eat some food but wasn’t really interested. In the moment, I thought, “Wow, these graham crackers aren’t as good the next day.” But that’s not true, because when we got back from the hospital they were awesome. It was just that I had no appetite and didn’t feel like eating anything — EVEN awesome homemade graham crackers. I was thirsty, but thought it was annoying that I had to pee every 4 minutes. So, I mostly drank, peed, and contracted. Sometimes all at once. Well… not drinking and peeing, but peeing and contracting. By this time, my contractions were much stronger. They literally “stopped me in my tracks” and if I didn’t anticipate it early enough, I wasn’t able to get into a more comfortable position before it hit hard.

Still, although I was uncomfortable and my back hurt so badly during the contractions, I was skeptical. I remember asking Coleen how much stronger they could possibly get. I said, “I can’t imagine them being stronger than this, but I also can’t imagine THIS causing anyone to want a huge needle in their back.” I also wasn’t sure how or when I would know it was time to travel to the hospital. I didn’t want to go too soon, because I knew I’d be “on the clock” when I arrived. I also didn’t want to wait too long and accidentally have the baby at home or something! (Though I’m open to the idea of a planned home birth in the future.)

I’m not sure if the contractions ever did get stronger than that, but they definitely got closer together. At 8:20am on Tuesday, I went into the master bathroom, had a contraction in there by myself, walked out of the bathroom into the bedroom, had another contraction (dropped on all fours) which made T come running to me, walked into the hallway, dropped to the floor again for another contraction… T gave Coleen a look like, “now?” and Coleen knelt on the floor beside me and said gently, “I think it’s time to travel to your birthing nest.” or something ridiculously sweet and sappy like that. I do know for sure she used the word “nest” which I thought was just too cute. I imagined a huge pile of blankets and pillows arranged into a nest for me… but that’s not quite how it went.

I agreed it was time to go to the hospital, but really couldn’t understand how I was going to GET there. My back hurt so intensely with every contraction that sitting and lying down were two positions I just couldn’t even fathom… especially not for a twenty-five minute car ride! I ended up kneeling on the passenger seat, hugging the back of the chair with my face on the head rest. T buckled me in backwards, and off we went. We had originally planned to call immediate family on the way to the hospital to let them know IT’S TIME! but with our ridiculous arrangement, it didn’t happen. Obviously.

I had 5 or 6 contractions in the car on the way to the base, and when we got to the gate, the gate guard was like, “uhhhh” obviously confused by the disheveled woman kneeling in the front seat. My husband said simply, “We’re in labor.” and the guard whisked us through, along with our doula in the car behind us, without even stopping her to check her ID. Thank you, gate guard with an Italian-sounding last name!

In the parking lot as we walked toward the hospital, I had to stop for another contraction, and someone spilled part of a water bottle accidentally at the same time… so it looked like I was leaking or something. People looked on, curiously, wondering if my water had broken. We laughed. I was happy to still have a sense of humor at this point.

When we got up to the maternal-infant unit, the nurses all looked excited and relieved. I was the most-far-along pregnant woman they’d been seeing lately, and I had just had a non-stress test the day before. The OB who did my ultrasound (and who reluctantly said everything looked normal/good) had been pushing for induction, but the nurses were supportive of my desire to wait and have spontaneous labor since my baby and I were both healthy and things were going smoothly. Still, it was a relief to actually have labor start on its own so we could not have to worry about fighting off the induction-hungry-OBs.

You’d think at this point, the goal would be “have a baby.” Right? Me too.

But the immediate goal was “Get a hep-lock into this woman’s crazy-tiny veins.” I just wanted to have a baby! But of course, if anything went wrong and they had to access my veins, it would be really bad to have trouble with the needle and stall whatever medicine/fluids I needed… so I knew the hep-lock HAD to be placed. Still, my veins are tiny (when I had surgery last year, it took two people and four veins before my IV was successfully placed.) and I HATE needles… oh, and I was in labor. The first vein popped, but the second one had success. This was also the first time I cried in labor. Because of a needle, not because of my body or the baby.

The other really hard thing was monitoring. I had to get into a monitor-friendly position so that a nurse could attach monitors tracking contractions and the baby’s heartbeat for 20 minutes every hour in the beginning. Monitor-friendly positions are not back-labor-friendly… sitting and lying down, mostly. That wasn’t pleasant.

After a couple hours of mostly laboring in modified all-fours positions, with my husband pressing on my back the entire time to help relieve some of the pain, Coleen suggested that I spend some time in the shower to take advantage of the warm water. Even though I had initially thought the shower was a good idea, I didn’t want to move. I didn’t want to get undressed, and I didn’t want to get wet. T and Coleen finally convinced me to try it for a bit though, and I’m glad they did. The warm water was very comforting. I sat on my yoga ball, facing the corner of the shower so I could put my arms and head on the safety bars while I had contractions and my husband pushed on my back.

The shower was also the second time I cried in labor — again, not because of my body or the baby, but because the shower seat, which folds up against the wall like a Murphy bed, came crashing down on my legs as I stood to get out of the shower. That thing hurt like the dickens! I’m not sure why I got out of the shower… maybe for more monitoring…

Yes, I think that’s what it was, because I remember sitting on the ball on the side of the bed, trying to get into a “monitor-friendly” position, and … the third (and final) time I cried in labor. The ball slipped under me and I smashed my legs into the hard pointy pieces of metal under the hospital bed. I couldn’t stop thinking about how much more comfortable (haha — comfortable) it would be at home, without the pointy hospital bed pieces, the heavy hard shower seat crashing down, and the monitors! At this point, labor seemed to be the most tolerable thing happening to my body.

(Yes, underneath that sheet, I am naked! Naked pictures on the internet!)


4 hours after checking into the hospital, at 12:30, I was fully dilated and effaced. I was kneeling on the bed, leaning my arms and head on the top of the bed, and pushing, trying to get the baby down… when my water broke. It was this HUGE impressive gush. Seriously, I was impressed with myself. And I was really relieved, because it was the first sign TO ME that this baby was actually going to come out. I had a thought along the lines of, “HA! She can’t stay in there now! Time to get things moving!”

But things moved slowly enough… as I pushed, I kept thinking “move down, baby!” and visualizing her settling down further into my pelvis, to be ready to come out… I alternated between all-fours, squatting positions, and sitting on a birth stool (imagine a chair with a hole in it — like a toilet seat with no toilet) for monitoring. I felt like I was going to be “moving her down” forever. Not with dread or anything like that… it was more of a feeling that this is my job. This is what I DO. I have contractions and move the baby down. That’s all there is in my life. I had no concept of time.

(This is my midwife. She volunteered to be on call for the THREE WEEKENDS before I had my baby, so that she could be sure not to miss it.)


At about 3:30, the midwife came in and got very excited. She said, “We’re going to have a baby!” and got suited up in her baby-catching outfit. This is the only part I might have changed, if I were to re-live the same experience… she had me lay on my back, in a semi-reclined position. As I’ve said multiple times, any lying or sitting position hurt like crazy due to my intense back contractions. I kind of wish I had been a bit more firm about wanting to continue on all fours and/or squatting. I think being on my back may have slowed things more than necessary.

Intense pushing. Intense. I had the same feeling as before… this is what I do. This is my life. I’m going to do this forever. I tried to push for as long as possible each time, inhaling as much air as I could, then holding my breath and bearing down, trying to draw out every bit of oxygen I could from that one breath, until I groaned out the last of it… taking a quick breath, then doing it again. During each contraction, I was able to get 3 or 4 pushes in. And sometimes a second contraction would come right away, and I might only get 2 or 3 pushes but they were much more productive, and the nurses would cheer me on. I still felt like I wasn’t accomplishing much, until someone told me to reach down and feel the baby’s head during a contraction. Once I knew that she was RIGHT THERE, I was relieved that there was an end in sight, that I would be meeting my daughter soon.

At some point, another nurse’s shift started and she joined the entourage in my room. I immediately disliked her and wanted her OUT but I didn’t say anything. Though when she suggested that she could “count” for me during contractions (you know, like in the movies) I growled out a firm NOOOOO. I couldn’t even imagine having someone else try to guess for me or tell me how long MY body needed to push. I was pushing as long as I could, when I needed to, and that was that. Counting wasn’t going to help a darned thing. So instead of counting, she frantically chanted, “Push! Push! Push!” at me through each contraction, which was about as annoying. But there it is.

My midwife looked puzzled and confused, and a bit exhausted, staring between my legs. When she had come into the room and gotten “suited up” she really thought we were going to have a baby ANY MINUTE NOW… she didn’t know she was signing up for hours of pushing. Even in “the moment” I was entertained by her puzzled expression. When I pushed, she would try to help me, putting pressure on my perineum, trying to stretch me to help the baby out.

(I wonder if my dad will still think I’m a super-photogenic person… labor-face isn’t the most attractive! But look at my sweet husband with the cold washcloth!)


My husband later told me that he was glad I didn’t seem to realize there was a clock in the room, because if I knew how long I had been working, I might’ve gotten more frustrated. The truth is, I knew there was a clock, and it was well within my sight, but I didn’t care about time. I didn’t look at it once.

Coleen also told me later that she felt like the midwife was “labor-sitting.” She stayed in the room the entire time I was pushing, probably because if she left, she would have to give a progress report to the OB who was working that day, and with how slowly things seemed to be going, the OB might push for a C-section. I am immensely grateful to my midwife for staying with me and giving my body a chance to birth my baby.

But eventually, it was apparent that I wasn’t stretching enough, and I wasn’t tearing either… my baby had been “crowning” for a really long time. I was getting Charlie horses in both of my legs, and my arms and entire back were also tense from so much work. My midwife asked me if she could cut an episiotomy, and I told her she could. I felt the cut, and it didn’t hurt much, but stretching cut skin definitely feels different than stretching normally… during the next push, I definitely felt a bit of burning because of the cut, but my baby’s head was able to come out! My midwife announced that the umbilical cord was NOT around her neck, so we could wait as long as we wanted to cut it, and I was relieved to hear that.

One more push, and my daughter slithered out of me. 5:56pm. After 20 hours. Well, 2 weeks and 20 hours. I held her immediately, and was so overwhelmed that this entire person had been inside of me, growing for so long, and here we were, face to face, meeting for the first time! I vaguely remember someone saying she needed to cry more, and my husband patting her back to get her to cry.


After a little bit, she cried, and started to look around the room, sucking on her fist.

I could feel the placenta being delivered, which didn’t hurt at all and was basically automatic, and my husband got to cut the umbilical cord after it had stopped pulsing (so that my daughter had all of that good blood inside her, where it belonged!).

(He’s cutting the umbilical cord here, and I’m covered in infant poop. But I totally don’t care about the poop because I’m holding my BABY!)


The midwife set to work stitching me up while I held my new daughter and marveled with my husband. For an hour, we just rested, staring at each other and our baby — the beautiful person who went with the name Anneliese.


The midwife finished stitching me (I asked her later how many stitches, and she said “many”… at least 55, she said. Ouch!) and left us alone for a while. The hospital staff all knew we wanted time with our baby before any tests/weighing/measuring were done, and they left us alone in the room.

Anneliese decided to nurse, and I helped her latch on to my breast.


Coleen stayed for a while, and I know we talked, but I can’t remember all the things we talked about. After a bit, she left, and it was just me and my little family. The next couple of hours were so sweet and peaceful. No one disturbed us, and Anneliese finished nursing and slept on my chest.


(This guy is a FATHER now.)


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  1. Thank you for writing about your birth experiences and pre labor. I wish I had read this in August when my second son was born. No one prepared me for pre labor. I did see a chiropractor the months before labor though. I had 24 hours (maybe a bit more) of pre labor. I can’t believe you had weeks of it! My midwife had to stick her fingers on my cervix so I could progress. I pushed for six hours after my water broke. I couldn’t get my sons head under my pubic bone. His head was either facing to the side or his hand was in the way or by his head. I couldn’t stand the painful contractions anymore. My midwife suggested transferring to the hospital and opting for a suction. By the time I got there I went to fully dilated back down to 7. So they refused to suction baby out. I couldn’t stand the pain so I did my second c-section (first was because my first sons heart rate would drop at every contraction). I kept saying to myself that if it wasn’t for the pre la of I ccoulx have pushed him out. But I think I’m wrong in saying that after reading your story. You are strong, you are confident and you are one with your baby and body. Thank you for sharing your birth stories.

    • Oh Jenny, I’m sorry you had such a rough experience of it too… Anneliese was also positioned a bit weirdly, and I think that makes it SO HARD to push… You’re a rock star for pushing for 6 hours, oh my goodness. And I can totally understand how a transfer would make you close up a bit… so uncomfortable, and maybe not feeling as “safe” in that environment. You should feel so proud of working as hard as you did for your baby and your birth. Huge hugs for you.

    • Oh wow. Thank you for this! Tears rolled down my cheeks when you got to touch her head and still are as I write this. Maybe it’s because I’m 41weeks plus 6 days. I don’t want to be induced. I want to trust my body. You inspire me, thank you for the amazing story. <3.

  2. […] The Hanford/Lemoore area has been our home for 4 years, and this house for 3. Both of our kids were born in Lemoore, and Joseph was born in this house. In my […]

  3. […] When Anneliese was born, we didn’t really do any of that. I’m sure I had some cute outfit picked out, but I don’t remember what it was. She was born at night, and the hospital here won’t discharge new moms/babies until 24 hours after the baby nurses for the first time (so it was nighttime then too). We had to stay even longer because their hearing-test-machine was broken and they wanted to try multiple times before they would let us go. I think it was around 9 or 10 pm by the time we left. […]

  4. CONGRATS! A little belated, I know, but I just got hooked on your blog and was curious about your birth story. My husband and I have a 3 & 5 year old, both were natural water births with the same delightful Midwife for both, one at a freestanding birth center, and one at home, and I wouldn’t change a thing. So congrats to your lovely family, and keep those delicious recipes and fun stories coming!

  5. Thanks for sharing, this is a fantastic article.Much thanks again. Cool.

  6. Thank you for sharing your beautiful story!! I’m 41 weeks pregnant with my 4th. I’ve never gone over before, have had all natural home births and have spent the last week fretting about why I’m not kicking into labor. Meanwhile labor “starts” every night, only to fizzle. Soooo frustrating. i feel like I’m wasting my maternity leave and I’m so sick of people calling me to tell me they’re worried about me and the baby. Argh.
    Anyways– your story made me feel a lot better. So thanks again for sharing. I wish more women and health care professionals thought like you do. Take care and enjoy your beautiful family!!

  7. Thank you so much for your blog 🙂 I’m 41 weeks today and dealing with a lot of the same things. I’m wide awake at 4 a.m. frustrated with all the comments about induction. No one understands our reasons for waiting. I believe in natural birth- I believe in my body and my baby- but it’s getting harder and harder without all the negativity. It was nice to see another woman “stick to her guns” and have a healthy happy baby at just the right time 🙂 We see our doctor tomorrow and he wants to induce- I needed to read something like this to remind me that I’m not being irresponsible- and that my baby knows when to come. Thank you.


  8. Thank you SO MUCH for sharing your birth story, Emily. What a wonderful experience. I truly cannot wait for my birth, but marvel in the amount of love and patience you had for your child. I still feel that same loving patience toward him now, but we are only 39.5 and my friends/family still have a modicum of respect for the way I want to do this.

    I pray that my journey is half as grand as yours seemed to be. 😀

    Also: tiny Anneliese is such a beauty!!

  9. Thank you so much Emily, for your wonderful birth story. I had 4 home births and my second was back labor from 3am until 5pm the next day. I think that these labors take longer because babies are in that position. Head doesn’t seem to get as pointed …i.e. as small going through the canal! At least I could be on all fours the whole time. It was in March and I was in an attached green house in Wisconsin. Warm enough to go naked and sunbath the new born the next day!
    I will share with the 5 gals at work that are expecting in the next few months.Jan

  10. Your birth story is so beautiful!! I am so glad that you were able to do it naturally and that you weren’t induced. My daughter also decided to come “late” and doctors were really irritated that I wanted to wait–I really hated that attitude. It is so encouraging to hear that more and more people are having healthy babies naturally! I really enjoyed reading your story and Congratulations on your beautiful daughter!

  11. Thanks for posting. I love birth stories, obsessed even! Congratualations on a natural childbirth!

  12. You are pretty damn photogenic for labor!

    I’m jealous you got to build up and have that bonding time with your husband. My labor went from zero to dramatic-movie-style with me *demanding* an epidural within a couple of hours. I love my labor but in that way I feel a bit cheated. I never really got to labor at home with my husband. It sounds so blissful to me!

    Your girl is gorgeous but you know that. Such great photos of it all!

  13. I found your blog awhile ago when you linked up on babymakinmachine with your birth story. I loved it when I first read it and I just read it for the second time for “inspiration”. I love empowering natural birth stories.
    If you don’t reply that’s fine but I have a question. You mentioned you planned on calling your parents while on your way to the hospital but didn’t because of the commotion… If you had called them and they were there at the hospital, would you still have spent all the time with just you/hubby/and baby or let your family come in to the room? I’m sure our family will be there but I don’t want to feel rushed after labor to let them visit so they aren’t waiting forever. Any thoughts? Hope that made sense…

    • Hi Summer!
      We live in California, and our parents are in South Carolina, so calling them on the way to the hospital wouldn’t have meant that they would’ve been there.

      If we lived nearby (or if we do for the next baby), I still think I would’ve wanted that alone time just us at first… and would have welcomed our family to visit the next day. I know some family members might have been hurt or offended by that, but I really feel that that time immediately after birth is sacred and precious and I wouldn’t want to interfere with that.

      I hardly wanted to let go of my daughter even to let her dad hold her! I certainly would’ve felt anxious to have her passed around the room from person to person that first day. The second day I was more relaxed-feeling about that. I don’t know if it’s because of hormones or what, but there it is.

      Not to mention that I had JUST had a lot of stitches, hadn’t showered yet, etc… It was a “magical” time but I wouldn’t have wanted company.

      • Thanks for the reply! I guess I forgot/didn’t realize your parents were far away. Thanks for your perspective!

  14. I just found your blog and had my first baby September 1st – and I have to say we had such a similar birth experience. You did a great job describing it – I tried to (it took me 3 blog posts!) but as I read this, I was nodding along, knowing exactly what you meant!

    Awesome. 🙂 Great job!!

  15. Congrats to you, T and Zora! Anneliese is absolutely beautiful!!!!!

  16. She is so beautiful. Thank you for your story – those of us who do not yet have children can benefit from knowing your experience. I've followed your blog for some time and thoroughly enjoy it. I really want to have kids, and yeah – I teared up. Congratulations on your sweet new blessing! Enjoy her – she will grow up in a few short minutes. 🙂

  17. Beautiful! Thanks for sharing it…it brings back memories of my three births…I'm smiling and tearing up. Thanks.

  18. Beautiful story! I also had a natural hospital birth and didn't want an episiotomy, but after a while of pushing with not much happening, the doctor cut and she was born! That's the only thing I would change if I could, the recovery wasn't so great. But other than that it was a natural delivery.
    I love reading natural birth stories! Although I relive how much work it was, but it's so worth it!

  19. So much of your story resonates w/ how I felt w/ my 2nd and 3rd babies. My first I'd wanted natural birth, but my water broke and I was put into the 24-hr countdown and then medical interventions kicked in w/ pitocin, epidural (1st try blown leading to a blood patch the next day) and vacuum extraction. It was a nightmare. After that experience I read Ina Mae Gaskin's “Guide to childbirth” and got a midwife. Still a hospital birth, but after spending the toughest part of labor in the bath with one of those spa mats blowing bubbles on me full steam, my daughter was easily born w/in 20 minutes of feeling the urge to push. I didn't even let them put a hep lock in since the only injection I might need would be if I would bleed too much after the birth and that can go straight in the thigh. The 3rd labor went from prodromal to actual labor so quickly that we forgot the bath mat, but still labored in the tub. Can't have water births in our only hospital yet, but to labor in water is so nice because I would go limp and float between contractions. My mom even ended up holding my head for a while fearful that my first big breath of a new contraction would be under water!
    I love sharing birth stories and nursing stories and all that. Wish you lived up here so we could visit and I could share some Grandmas with you. They're especially nice in the afternoon when you need a shower. (c: God Bless!

  20. How precious! Your labor sounds similar to mine with my son (He's almost 3 weeks old now). The back labor was SO INTENSE! You did much better than I did with the pushing, though. I wasn't sure I was even pushing out a baby, I was so tired! I also cried between every pushing contraction 😛

  21. I didn't get to read this until just now, even though I saw it pop up, and I just wanted to say what a wonderful birth story! She's precious.

  22. I just started following you on Twitter this week, and I feel so lucky to have found your blog just in time to read your amazing birth story.

    A belated welcome to the world for Anneliese and congratulations on your Birth Day. You did such wonderful work bringing your daughter into the world!

  23. Great job! I got a little chuckle by the time I finished reading the story. There is “T” with baby, then the next line is: ” You might also like Zucchini Cakes” Ha Ha,

    I like the photos it was nice to see what you were talking about. Nice family!

  24. Welcome Annaliese!!
    So happy that you had the delivery you wanted!!!

  25. I adore the pic of Daddy cutting the cord and you looking so lovingly at your husband – it looks like you fell in love all over again. 🙂

    Your labor sounds a lot like both of mine with contractions in the back, not front, the riding in the car looking out the rear window, hubby putting pressure on my back to help with the intense pain and the multiple positions. Sadly the same happened with me, I was on my back (2nd baby), semi-upright pushing, which was the WORST position possible due to the pain in my left hip/back. Afterwards the midwife told me she needed me in that position to get the baby out ASAP since the cord wrapped 2x around his neck and then also prolapsed when he was crowning. It was scary, but thankfully she did what she needed to and got him out fast. Hes a healthy little pup though and boy does he have a set of lungs!

    Did they have a birthing tub there? I took MAJOR advantage of mine at both hospitals I birthed at. I really think it helped soften the tissues 'down there' and I only wound up with a tear that required a few stitches my first time, and my second was so small she didnt even stitch me.

    Beautiful story, I enjoyed every minute reading it. You make me want another baby tho!!!!!!!! 🙂

  26. Amazing! You are a strong woman! Beautiful story, beautiful family!

  27. Congrats! Thank you for sharing your story. It makes me both a little afraid of having a baby and want to tell my husband we should go ahead and have one!

  28. It may not have been your aim, but I certainly teared up. Thank you for sharing and congratulations!!

  29. This is a beautiful story. Congratulations. Thanks for sharing with us.

  30. I've never had a baby and never will now, I'm 59. Your story brought me to tears, what a beautiful story, thank you. Good wishes to you and your “family.”

  31. Fantastic birthing story. Thank you for sharing with us. Congratulations momma!

  32. What an amazing birth story!!! Thank you for sharing it with all of us. And what a beautiful little family you now have.

  33. What an absolutely lovely story. Congratulations on the baby and your husband!

  34. What a beautiful read this is. It took me right back to our day/night/day in the delivery suite when our twins were born in week 32 of the pregnancy.

  35. Aww…that was wonderful! I give props for you for being patient!

  36. Probably from the shower early in labor at the hospital. Sopping wet clothes would be much more uncomfortable!

  37. Lovely! I'm glad you got the birth you wanted.

  38. Congratulations 🙂 Thank you for sharing your birth story, it was well-written!

  39. That's so great, but this makes me really glad I had c-sections, your labor was so much wor with no medicine and all that tearing, but worth it, I suppose, huh? Why were you naked during labor, though? Never understood why women did that. Your daughter is beautiful and you two look so happy. Enjoy her!

  40. I hopped over here from someone linking on Twitter and this is such a beautiful birth story. I absolutely loved the pictures.
    My oldest child was a hard back labor. 22 hours of labor, over an hour of pushing and a tear. My youngest? He came so fast that we didn't even have time to make it to the hospital! The first can definitely pave the way for the second, which is pretty great.

  41. Congrats to you and Daddy too!!She is beautiful

  42. Beautiful! You're amazing. Congratulations on little Anneliese.

  43. I'm so glad you wrote it all out Emily! It's an awesome story, and you wrote it out perfectly 🙂

    I'm so happy for you that your doula and midwife supported you all the way through natural labor, you just got to do your job and have the baby without having to fight people off during the process. She's so beautiful, worth every second of pushing and every stitch of that episiotomy 🙂


  44. Yes, I undressed to get into the shower. Afterward, I didn't feel like putting on clothes… when you get further into labor, any inhibitions or modesty tends to go out the window. Also, I was very hot – hence my husband with the cold wash cloths… so more fabric on my body wasn't sounding attractive.

    It wasn't like a, “Woo hoo! Baby time! Let's get naked!” thing…

  45. congratulations!!! i love birth stories. you will never regret having it all written down and documented. i made myself write mine out right away too, so i wouldn't forget a thing. oh and i love her name!

  46. I absolutely love labor stories and this one is empowering and terrific. Congratulations! My first daughter was a lot of pushing and big ol' episiotomy as well. And my 2nd was 3 hours of labor, 3 pushes and barely a tear. Both 9 lb babies too! 🙂 So….baby #1 definitely paves the way for the others 🙂 Thank goodness for that, because pushing was definitely the hardest part in my opinion. Thanks for sharing and enjoy her, time flies!

  47. Congratulations! You all look lovely! Welcome to the party, Miss Anneliese.

  48. Thank you for sharing your birth story Emily. I'm going to read it again closer to my date so I know what to expect. The pictures of your baby are precious!

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