Reflections on a Birth
March 7, 2013 § 1 Comment
Lily has just this week turned six. Her birth was a life changing event for me, and as the years roll by my reflections upon that day have gradually shifted focus. Lately, I find myself thinking more of the emotional and spiritual aspects of birth, and Lily’s birth was profound in these respects.
I became pregnant with Lily only six months after losing Meir. As a result, she was a deeply, deeply longed for baby. However the legacy of losing a baby, especially halfway into the pregnancy, is one of anxiety and worry. I was determined to finally have a homebirth after losing Meir and being told by the hospital that I would be required to have many interventions for all future pregnancies and births…. interventions I knew to be unnecessary.
I didn’t even ring to book a midwife until I was past 20 weeks. It was as though I had been holding my breath for those entire five months, and once past that milestone of sorts, of when I lost the baby, I could finally exhale and begin the pregnancy and preparations. Homebirth midwives are few and always booked, so I was very lucky to be taken on by the midwife I had booked in for when pregnant with William (we didn’t have a homebirth in the end with that pregnancy due to various factors).
As birthing time came closer, I had a lot of worry that the baby would not be born alive, or healthy. It took a lot of emotional work to get to the point where the urge to meet my baby was more powerful than my fears.
Lily’s birth was amazing because she was a huge baby! 4.9kg (10lb 11oz), birthed in three hours at home, with no stitches required. The most profound aspect for me was what happened in the second stage of birth, which is when the baby is pushed out. Birthing a huge baby takes a lot of effort – I had given birth twice before so knew what to expect. In this birth however, everything was magnified and very overwhelming.
Once the baby began moving down the birth canal, the most primal urge took over – the urge that sees a baby born. It was so, so powerful that I had no option but to completely surrender to it. I experienced the dissolution of my self in that moment. I, that is Kirrilee, simply moved aside and let an all-powerful, loving force move in to see the baby born. I was nothing, and yet everything, all at once.
I have always been asked how I did it, when people hear how big Lily was and how fast and smooth the birth was. My answer then, as it still is, is that I don’t know. ‘I’ didn’t do it, God did.
Lily’s birth was so joyous – because she was a girl after boys, because I finally had a home birth (an experience which just cannot be described adequately), because she was healthy.
We recovered quickly, and in the months to come I experienced a loving one-ness with Lily. Her birth gave me a glimpse into a space of pure love, a glimpse into the possibility that we are all enlightened beings.
I carry that with me always.