Friday, April 19, 2013

My baby girl is 12!

Wow..  today is Chloe's 12th birthday.  This is so hard to believe, it was just SO not that long ago, and yet it was- it was 2 homes ago, 4 children ago, and 12 years ago!

I tried to find Chloe's birth story but didn't have any luck.  I think i've been through way too many computers and this one slipped through...  at any rate, i'll give a quick summary.

Chloe was my very first homebirth, and my ONLY successful waterbirth! (Anna and Leif were supposed to be since I determined after Chloe that i was NEVER giving birth on land again!! but various mishaps made that not happen)   With Chloe, I was so excited to have an actual homebirth.  Alex was born in a hospital- pretty miserable,  Nik was born in a birth center with a very medical midwife, which was scary and inconvenient when we had to go home like 3 hours later.  So when we were pregnant with Chloe, we decided to use a lay midwife, one who was NOT so medical and would let me do my thing and give birth without so much interference.

We chose Sue Ellen Jeffrey who was really outstanding.  She also had a trainee, Amy Gordon who was wonderful as well.  For my first homebirth, i opted to make it kind of like a giant birth party (LOL) yes, i'm an extrovert!  I had several friends present, mostly my natural mama, birth interested friends, including 2 preggo friends, Kristan and Heather.  There was one guy friend present, my frend Gena and her husband "crazy Mr. Matt" but he was thoughtful and didn't come in when i was more exposed...  

An amazing picture, photographed from Chloe's scrapbook album, of Chloe emerging from the water.  SueEllen is on the left and Amy on the Right

Strangely enough, i remember what i was wearing.  I was wearing a black tank top, since i'm not really into being naked in a room full of people, nor in being completely naked birthing, which i think makes me weird, but that's me! I was in the tub with Andy- i totally made him get in there with me and completely mauled him when it was time to push-  I remember like each of my homebirths i woke up the night before, around 4 am in labor, got up, got some work done and finally had Chloe around 1 am the next night (my shortest homebirth and also smallest homebirthed baby!)  She was...  8 lbs 5oz i think? having arrived 4 days early, and she was TINY :) such a beautiful little girl.  She emerged into the water gently, and peacefully looked around.  I broke my own quiet and dark rule by screaming, "get it out of the water!" :) mama instinct i guess.  She came out, and i immediately asked, "is it a boy or girl?"  We didn't find out with Chloe, or coincidentally with Annabeth either! they were the only two we didn't find out ahead of time and the only two who were girls :) I had 2 boys at this point and didn't want to be disappointed if Chloe was another boy and i figured that after giving birth, i'd just be grateful it was OUTTA there, and what a thrill finding out she was a girl... my beautiful daughter.  

Poor quality picture, unfortunately we were not yet in the digital age- and we also wanted to have dark to go easy on her sensitive eyes, but here's my sweet little Chloe shortly after birth, swimming in her sleeper bag.

I named her after a little girl who was in the 4yo class at the childcare center i worked at on post when Andy was in the army.   It was my favorite classroom, and there was a sweet little girl there, I asked her what her name was and she said, "My name is Chloe" and it was sooo cute how she said it, i decided then and there that if i had a little girl, she'd be a Chloe :)  Its funny how all the little parts of life work together to build our futures..

After she was born, i remember being so comfortable. It totally didn't feel like i gave birth at ALL, other than my tailbone was bruised so my butt hurt, it felt like i'd been sitting too long.  but it was amazing how little physical damage occurs with a water birth.  Its too bad that never worked out with any of my 4 other babies.    The next thing i remember was an overwhelming sense of fear, i remember the realization hitting me that i had a DAUGHTER.  That I would somehow have to protect her, and i was beside myself.  How could i protect this sweet, fragile little girl from this big, bad, nasty world.  It was and is overwhelming, though i have 1. a strong faith that God will take care of my babies even better than i can, and 2. the knowledge that i'm a strong, powerful woman, capable of inflicting an enormous amount of pain on anyone that would dare harm any of my children.   That's the best i can do.  And that's ok.

Today is all about Chloe.  We are going to skip school today, and focus on getting the house in decent shape, and we will be surprising her with a visit this evening from her best friend, Hannah :) she doesn't know she's coming.  we had hoped to have her sleep over, but she has a softball tournament in the morning, so we decided to do it another time but her mom suggested she maybe come over to hang out for a few hours so that's what we shall do! i think i'll have them make cupcakes together and then play or watch a movie or something.  fun! girls are awesome <3 <3

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