Octavia’s birth.
(Or the coming of the blood moon baby lol, and why I chose a home birth)

I had my first baby in 2012, back then the idea of having a baby in any other setting but hospital scared the blazes out of me. All that risk, no instant access to machines and doctors. And then I had my baby – We were bossed around by unknown midwives, told to lie down, had drips shoved in my arms, hormones pumped into the other. Bright lights, a whirl of faces, checks, more bossing around. At least 8 different people seeing my fanny. And a wee son, born posterior pulled out by a ventouse. A few weeks after having  him a family friend remarked ‘Didnt you just feel so powerful, so, I am woman, hear me roar!!’ I replied no, just sh*t scared.

This time around I knew I wanted more, That I could have a different out come, and wanted to try a home birth. My family were shocked “If it wasn’t for hospital Shen could have died” The truth was for every urgent ‘life saving’ move, there were two that had led up to it that could/ should have been avoided. After many debates, discussions with the midwife and a lot of tooing and froing, we settled on a ‘home away from home birth’ At my mums, close enough to hospital to make the naysayers happy, yet a family home, and that’s what mattered to me. (Some days its easier to get people on your side by concession then to fight the whole way.)

So 5th april this year I was ready, I was ‘1 week to go’ and the easter ‘blood moon eclipse’ was happening. husband and I stood outside watching through the binoculars, and he commented “what a cool night it’d be to have our baby – the coming of the four horsemen of the apocalypse and a small girl lol” (Yes he actually said lol)

Oddly at 3 in the morning – the official end of the eclipse I felt a wiggle and pop. Waters had broken. Husband had only just gotten into bed, so I left him snoring softly while I got things rolling. Called the mid wife to let her know – as she’d asked me to if I was ‘earlier’. She told me to ring her back when contractions started getting close together and regular. 20 mins later I called her again – “Really???” yup. I’d had three, and five mins apart each… I was asked what I was doing – was car packed, was husband up and helping me? Was my mum aware we’d be coming soon…. No, I was in the middle of making hot cross buns!! Was told to not bother letting them rise, and get husband up.

(turned out she was zooming back to Auckland from batch just past Auckland…) Meet you at mums.

We got there in the end, about 5 am, things were about the same, contractions lasting 4 deep breaths, every 5 mins, Got things organised, blankets, tarps, Music!!- Bob Marley and a host of Jamaican roots reggae artists to see our bubba in. Music of the soul with the beat of the heart. And of course, tea and biscuits. My son especially liked  this, and went around pinching everyone elses. Although soon got too stressed to be in the birth room with us, so went to play with pop, who ended up takin him out for a swing and promise of an ice cream.

Mean while I was calm collected and on task – midwife giving pressure point massages, husband drawing on my back with his fingers (I love that feeling!!)

Around 7 things ramped up another notch – They started feeling pushy. A quick VE showed I was well ready to jump in the bath, And that although not fully dilated, little miss’ head was coming down already. Suddenly, my cool calmness was replaced by a need to squeeze the blazes out of husbands hand and vocalise a bit more – and my potty mouth definitely got used. (easy to say that what I was uttering is not printable lol) Around this time My ma mentioned that if Id gone to hospital I could have had an epidural – pain-free, like she’d seen on the Kardashians – Which changed my mantra to ‘I am not a fkin Kardashian!!!’  with every surge.

I got out of the pool, tried another position, got back in, tried to get out again because I was getting annoyed by being confined to the bath, only to be told “your crowning, get back in, chill out, you got this”. Shocked, I had to feel what she meant, yup, a little head right there!!! Shit!!! Within 3 more surges she’d wriggled popped a bit then sploooosh, I remember looking down, awestruck as she blinked at me from under the water!!

My gorgeous little cone head bubba, Born just before 8am, in her nanas bath, surrounded by family, an awesome midwife and no intruders. This time I felt it.

I am woman, hear me roar!!!