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Diamond Marks the Spot

One of my clients has three fabulous birth stories; each unique and very, very amusing.

1. During labor, beginning to push, mom said, "It's burning" and the midwife (I was assisting/observing) kindly offered to put ice on her perineum. The mom's eyes flew open and she said emphatically, "Something's on fire!" Right next to me (how did I miss it?!), a down comforter had been tossed onto a candle and was aflame. The midwife jumped off the bed, grabbed the comforter and dashed across the small room, burning feathers flying and tossed it into the blow-up fishy pool, popping the top ring of the pool. The twelve or so folks in the room (great, tight family) all laughed at the crazy turn of events. Mom hollered, "Shut up! Shut up! I'm trying to push!" We all stifled our laughter and mom had the baby not long after. Twenty minutes or so after the birth, mom started laughing and we all could finally let the tension go. The next morning, when one of her brothers came to see the baby, he looked in the still-filled pool with the floating singed feathers and said, "So, did you have a duck?"

2. I was really sick with Disseminated Coccidiomycosis, had a DVT and a separate blood clot in my leg. At her 40+ week prenatal, the baby's heart tones were very low. After moving her around, spicing things up with juice and watching the kid for awhile, I decided we needed a better look, so drove the 40 miles or so to a midwife-friendly hospital. A six-hour NST showed the baby's heart rate never going over 115 or so... averaging about 105-110. Even so, the OB, apparently from some alternate universe, said the baby was fine, to go home and have a great homebirth. So we drove back, talked for a couple of hours about the baby, keeping an open mind about place of delivery and by that time, I was so exhausted, I couldn't possibly drive the 30+ miles home. I was put up in a spare bedroom and set my phone to wake me in two hours to check the baby. Right before the alarm went off, dad came in and told me mom started having contractions. 45 minutes later, the baby was born. If I'd have gone home, I would have missed the birth. Isn't fate great sometimes?

3. Mom, very nervous about how fast this baby might come. At a prenatal, I left all my equipment, showed them how to help the baby breathe if they needed to do that before I got there and checked in with mom fairly often. I finally got the call that contractions had started and immediately left for her house. I called my then-apprentice to also get to her house... we were off and running. I had to drive across the county on a two-lane road and at 3:30pm, the traffic was at a near standstill. I was talking to my apprentice on the phone who got to the house amazingly fast and when she got in the house, mom was on the floor, baby's head in her pants. My apprentice helped her get her pants off and the baby was born... there on the floor, marking the carpet with a bright red, later brown stain. Dad and I arrived together, the baby and mom were great... all was well.

But, mom was a tad miffed about the carpet stain that, even with peroxide, just never really disappeared. She was mostly miffed that her husband wouldn't pull the carpet up and lay down the wood floors... like the ones he laid for a living.

Finally, after years of waiting, dad yanked up that old carpet and put down the lovely wood. He loved the story of his third baby being born on the floor... hated taking up the special section of the rug... he designed a way to honor his son's birth with the wood.

He took a red piece of wood, made it into a diamond shape and inlaid the piece into the final design.

Now, that is love right there.

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Reader Comments (9)

Hilarious! I giggled out loud at the duck bit. And baby in your pants.. classic. Thanks for the laugh, totally needed it.

November 4, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterTatiana

Wow, now that's a great man right there. Beautiful. LMAO at the duck.

November 4, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMegan

I love the diamond inlay in the wood floors. That is 100% my kind of thing! Now I'll have to look into doing that upstairs where my son was born...

November 5, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterRixa

Those are so funny! I love the part about the comforter on fire- how was it that only the mom noticed?! Got to love that pregnancy nose, I guess!

For my next I am planning on having a midwife but will be researching unassisted birth based on how fast my first one came!

November 5, 2010 | Unregistered Commentersara

Okay, the diamond made me cry. Dads can be so cool and so on sometimes.

November 5, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterEthel

It was *crazy* that she was the only one that noticed in a room with about 12-14 people in it!

Her sister was videotaping (remember those?!) and she ran out of tape *just* as you could see a FLASH of fire reflecting off the white wall. She totally missed the birth trying to put another cassette into the camera.

November 5, 2010 | Registered CommenterNavelgazing Midwife

There is something about the exact place where a baby was born.
When we sold our rowhouse in Baltimore, my husband went through the house with the buyers first, and then I did a few days later. In our now empty bedroom I went to the spot where my side of the bed had been and said "Our daughter was born, right about here," holding my hands up at the height of the bed. "We know," they said. "Your husband did exactly the same thing when he showed us this room.
A neat thing about that house was that all five of the children of the family who occupied it before us, including the man who sold it to us, had been born in that bedroom.

Recently, my youngest daugher took her boyfriend to the empty house up in the country (used for storage only now) where she was born and lived until she was 8. When they came back he told me, "She showed me the exact spot where she was born." He was quite impressed.

Susan Peterson

November 5, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterSusan Peterson

awesome, thanks for sharing!

November 5, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterRachel

Damn, my lovely OJ just went flying towards the screen, out of my mouth..."did you have a duck" LMAO!!

November 5, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterNicole

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