Monday, July 15, 2013

My Sweet Noa Bell by Kenly Shankman

My sweet Noa Bell.

You were going to be a boy.  I was 100% convinced that you were another sweet little man in my belly.

After having your brother, Nash, in the hospital exactly two years earlier, I was thrilled to get the chance to have you at home.  Our house was barely finished, only having had moved in a few weeks earlier. However it didn’t feel rushed, because in my mind, even though I had gone through this before, I was never going to go into labor.  It still amazes me that the birth process actually works.

On the eve of November 18th, Michael and I thought it would be perfect if I started to go into labor at 5:30am after a good night’s rest.  That way I could labor all day while Nash was in school and have you in the evening.  Well, it happened!  Except I only labored for (less than) two hours before you arrived.  At 5:45AM I woke up to go to the bathroom and thought that maybe my water had broken.  I wasn’t sure since it was only a trickle and the last time it was more like Niagara Falls.  I had something that felt like a contraction, but of course, I still wasn’t convinced that I was in labor.  Eight minutes or so later I felt another contraction, but again not convinced. 

Maria insisted that we call her right away since this was our second baby.  Michael was ready to call and I pushed back as I was still in denial.  He ignored me and called Maria.  I much as I hate to admit it, he was right.  My next contraction was a few minutes later.  After a half hour, we’re pretty sure that I had little-to-no time between contractions. 

I was still standing in the same place in our bedroom from when I had returned from my morning bathroom visit.  Although we had a birthing tub, I really had no desire to move at all, let alone get into a birthing tub that only had been filled up 1” at that point.  Maria arrived and didn’t skip a beat.  She was calm, efficient, and ready for action. 

In the meantime, our dear friend Jenna came over and got Nashy dressed and ready for school.  I could hear his sweet voice at one point asking, “what are mommy and daddy doing?”

Around 7am, I had one contraction that brought me to my knees.  Since I hadn’t moved my one spot on the hardwood floor, I think there was some attempt to put pillows under us.  Our second lovely midwife, Nile, arrived right around then.  After a few slow, long contractions and pushes, you arrived.  Michael announced that you were a girl and I was in utter disbelief.  But sure enough, as you were on my chest I could see that you were the most beautiful baby girl I had ever seen. 

It was then that we decided to name you Noa. 

Jenna told us that she and Nashy could hear the cheers from the other room, but being that there was a fair amount of clean-up, she took him out to breakfast and then school like the wonderful friend she is. 

We spent the day with our gorgeous, black haired, eight and a half pound, baby Noa Bell. 

Michael picked up Nash after school and brought him home to meet you.  We were at home and we were now four.  Admittedly, your brother was more interested in the cookies next to the bed than you. 

Having you at home was one of the best decisions we’ve ever made.  It was so beautiful being in the most comfortable environment, surrounded by people we knew well and loved. 

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