Lilith Grace's Birth Story

If you follow me anywhere else or know me personally this is obviously OLD NEWS! She's two months old now but I've finally gotten around to finishing up writing her birth story. Oops. At least it's faster than last time...I think Hannah was like five or six months before I finally posted hers. Ha ha! Anyway, click below to read more:

Our story begins as most of my birth stories do....with me being giant and overdue. The birth order of my kiddos so far has been:

(Stepdaughter: I didn't birth her but she's my kid regardless!)
- First: The only one born BEFORE his due date - 7 days "early"
- Second: 8 days over
- Third: 10 days over
- Fourth: Was surprisingly born ON his due date!
- Fifth: 13 days over
- Sixth: 10 days over

On March 27th, I was 11 days past my due date and the corona virus restrictions had just started setting in recently. In the 2-3 weeks prior, I'd basically just been seeing the doctor/midwife and staying at home. Being pregnant and postpartum during corona/social isolation has been very interesting to say the least, but that's another post for another time.

I had a midwife visit previously on Wednesday (9 days overdue) and baby was still head down. I was 3 cms dilated and we did a bit of a stretch since I was overdue. Every time I had an exam during this pregnancy, I had a very unfortunate 24-48 hours after where I would spend the majority of my time in the bathroom, stomach heaving and churning, and barely able to keep anything down. I had had that happen the week before when I'd seen my OB as well. Both times I had sporadic contractions every 20 minutes or so but they tapered off and I was able to rest up and recuperate.

Late Friday night (around 11:30 or so) I started having contractions again. I sat on the couch and timed them. I called the midwife around 1:45 when they'd gotten more consistent and she headed to my house, along with the other midwife from her practice. This was my first time birthing with them - one of them attended several of my births when she was training to be a midwife, though and we've known each other for years. They arrived quickly and started getting things set up. I laid or sat in the bed mostly while working through the contractions. I listened to music a little and my husband rubbed my back and held my hands.

Around 3:40 when I'd started to feel somewhat "pushy" I moved to the birthing stool the midwives had brought - I'd never used one before but it was surprisingly comfortable. My husband sat on the bed behind me, supporting me, and the midwives were crouched on the floor. After 20 minutes or so of pushing, Lilith Grace entered the world at 4:12 AM. She weighed 8 pounds, 9 ounces and was 21 inches long. She was born "en caul" which I'll explain a bit because not everyone knows what that means. It means she was born inside the intact amniotic sac. Usually the sac will break at the beginning of labor or during birth - we commonly refer to it as the "water breaking." An en caul birth is incredibly rare (only happening in less than 1 of every 80,000 births) and in medieval times and in many religious traditions, it has been interpreted as a sign of good luck. I honestly only got a glimpse of it - it would have been neat to have a picture of it but obviously we were all a little too busy to do that!

We'd been debating her name for quite awhile and actually didn't decide fully until after she was here and we'd gotten to see her for a little while. (As we usually do.) This is probably going to sound pretty silly...but I was concerned that while all the other kids have names that are about God (strength of God, God is my salvation, etc.) Lilith was...well, different because it means "night monster." That's a different kind of vibe, huh?! 
Anyway, husband jokingly called her Lilith pretty much from the beginning and it stuck with me. It's a pretty lyrical name. And honestly, she deserves a "different" kind of name because this pregnancy was entirely different for me - being pregnant after a loss, having some issues at the beginning I'd never dealt with before, being born during a pandemic, and then being born en caul! Lily is a cute nickname - I always want the kids to have a nickname - and Grace means "bringing delight and happiness."

Her first night was very rough but we made it through and things have been smooth sailing since then. I had some issues initially after birth and my recovery was a little slow to start. I have to think that maybe the gastrointestinal issues I'd been having had something to do with that. My husband was laid off the day the baby was born (what timing, eh?!) but that turned out to be a blessing since I needed more assistance. He helped me out a great deal and it was nice being able to spend so much time together. (He just recently went back to work.) We also had several friends from our homeschool co-op bring us dinners for the first two weeks and our parents frequently dropped by diapers, groceries, and stuff for the kids.

Two months out, Lilith is growing like crazy. She's nursing great and seems to be taking after her brothers and Hannah regarding her size - Betsy and the two older girls are skinny minnies. She's already rolling over and trying to scoot. She smiles and has started to do the tiniest little giggle. She's a welcome rainbow to our wonderfully chaotic household.

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