We always said when we decided we were ready to start a family, we would never lose sight of the importance of nurturing our marriage and friendship. That no matter how much energy we poured into our children that we would always come first. I believe that in order to be good parents that we need to be the strong foundation. The reality of new parenthood and our current life circumstance is that it’s hard to make our relationship a priority. We’re tired, we get few hours alone together, his work is demanding, baby is demanding and there is no such thing as a day off. But we continue to stay committed to that vision, even if it's a little difficult right now.
We were fortunate that our labor and delivery experience was technically a good one, maybe you could even say it was successful, but it was not without plenty of worrisome moments. Everything you read says to be prepared for marathon laboring; make sure you bring something to read, have plenty of snacks on hand for the husband, etc. But I labored so quickly that if we hadn’t gone to the hospital when we did, I may not have made it there in time. Leading up to the birth, both my doctor and our doula Doris Ann believed that I would likely labor quickly, but there was really no way to anticipate just how fast it would all go or how dramatic it would ultimately be. We arrived thinking we still had plenty of time, but that was not the case for me; ultimately laboring at home for 4 hours with a total of 5 in the end. (Glen made an honest attempt at eating breakfast and drinking his coffee...a funny story for another time.) Further adding to the drama, Kaia was positioned face up, there was no time for meds, and the threat of needing a c section if we couldn't make the natural birth happen... safe to say the delivery room situation was extremely chaotic and overwhelming. It was intense and scary, the most traumatic experience we've shared to date. Our emotional strength being tested along with my physical. Glen and I leaned heavily on each other and had Doris Ann to help us through it. Thankfully we pulled off a natural birth with no complications. Such a relief and blessing. It was life changing, to say the least.
Glen often says our childbirth experience made the risk of my mortality a reality to him. That might sound strange, all our lives are precious and fragile. But in his line of work, it’s usually his life at risk and between the two of us he can usually count on me to be the one who is “safe”. This was the first time in all our years together where he felt intense fear for my life. Watching me in pain, completely powerless and relying on prayer. They say you fall in love with each other all over again through the birth of your first child. This photo is that very experience between us captured by our doula shortly after Kaia was born, our emotions frozen in time. We were both in a state of shock, trying to absorb it all. We spoke few words, just locked eyes and embraced. In this moment, we saw each other as mother and father for the very first time. Kaia completes us, and is the beginning of our new adventure as parents, but it will always start with the two of us.