Josephine Clare was born on a Tuesday at 4:20am, January 28th, 2014.
Two days prior, the electricity went out in our little apartment …. and I had a total meltdown. I will not forget the intense passion I was experiencing while sternly reprimanding Ben he needed to get that fixed and he needed to get that fixed ASAP.
Even though my due date was two weeks away, I needed to make sure things were safe. It was the middle of winter AND I have a 15 month old who needs light and warmth and food and all that good stuff that’s sorta dependent on ELECTRICTY.
And oh, you know, would if we had an emergency birth at home and we couldn’t see a darn thing? That would be traumatizing (Little did I know…)
Poor Ben! How tortured he was throughout that day. He was my dumping ground of all of my emotions and fears and exhaustion. Side note….I am SO thankful for a husband who takes the punches tenderly, leads me gently, and buys me Chinese in those less than fine moments. I don’t even remember what he did to get the electricity running again but I think it was something so simple like flipping a break switch… I know, sorta embarrassing when I look back on it.
The next day, a Monday, I remember being a little extra lazy while trying to plan our meals and the weeks activities. I wish I could remember what else I did that day but I just don’t.
But what I DO remember is that Monday night, after Luke (my son) was asleep, Ben and I snuggled up on the couch, watched a show, and ate popcorn. At one point I remember saying with a smile,
” wouldn’t it be so crazy if I went into labor TONIGHT?”
to which Ben replied so nonchalantly,
“yeah. but your due date is two weeks away, Ro. It will probably be at least another three before the new baby is here. Babies often come late.”
And I agreed. And we went to bed.
Now its 2am, and I wake up. And for about forty minutes or so I just laid there while what I thought I was experiencing Braxton hicks (fake labor pains).
But they didn’t go away. And that got me excited.
So much so that I began to wonder, ooooooo…..what if I actually am in labor???? So I got up, grabbed my laptop, and headed towards the living room to sit on the couch.
So at around 3 am, I am googling labor. But its 3 am guys, and I am also wondering if maybe its just a good idea to go back to sleep. I have a toddler to take care of in the morning, you know?
Looking back, I don’t know how it all happened so fast. At one point I went to the bathroom and had one of those major signs (and you veterans know what I’m talking about) that told me YES, I was definitely in labor.
So I woke up Ben.
“Hey Honey, I’m definitely in labor! But you can go back to sleep. Just wanted to let you know”
Than I texted my mother in law who promised to be there for childcare purposes so Ben and I could go to the hospital when it was time.
Than I sat back on the couch and it just came. Those really really REALLY bad LABOR PAINS. Enter curse words.
Ben came out of the bedroom and I was pretty happy because I was ready to tell him, “hey…this actually hurts pretty bad and they are sorta close together so maybe we should go to the hospital right about now”
Ben was understanding. He made sure that his mom was on the way and told us we could start packing our things so we could be ready to go to the hospital when she arrived (she lived about 45 minutes away)
But as the minutes (or even seconds) went by, the pain was getting worse. It was the “I DO NOT THINK I CAN HANDLE THIS” type of pain. And I remember my midwife telling me a while back that when that pain is happening you are usually in transition.
But Ben didn’t think so. In his ‘trying to be understanding but a little frustrated’ voice, he said something like,
“Hey Honey, I think you just need to work through the pain and be patient. I think that if you are having a hard time now, you really are just making it harder on yourself for later. Try to relax, let’s pack”
But I couldn’t pack. I really couldn’t. I was laying in bed thinking this pain was totally unbearable. And I became in charge.
“Babe, we need to go NOW. LIKE, WE NEED TO GO NOW”
For some reason I didn’t have pants on (I know, odd part of the story).
Ben was frustrated (it is the middle of the night, you guys)
But he pushed through it. There was a little back in forth in our bantering that yes you may be right that I’m in the beginning stages but also maybe the baby is coming right now and we need to get to the HOSPITAL NOW.
So Ben helped me put on pants and right after that I felt like I needed to go to the restroom. And as I sat down to go, my water broke.
“BABE. MY WATER BROKE. CALL 911”
I remember reaching down and feeling THE HEAD. And at that moment I just remember getting this overwhelming “let’s get this done” attitude. I hopped in the bath, turned on the water, and literally couldn’t help the urge to push.
Ben called 911.
7 minutes later, Josephine was born as Ben so carefully helped her out. Ben cried. I wanted to make sure she was alive. A few minutes later, a myriad of random firefighters/ems workers/and Ben’s mom! arrived. It was hectic. It was snowing. We were rushed via ambulance to the hospital. And it was the most beautiful/surreal experience holding sweet Josephine in my arms and wondering, am I dreaming?
My labor lasted a total of 2 hours and 20 minutes. A few days later we received the tape to our 911 call. It’s probably my favorite 7 minutes of recording I’ve ever listened to.
So sweet Josephine, you wanted out. You wanted to make your presence known. You said, “HEY! I’M HERE!” and you’ve been that way ever since. You are passionate, and we are passionate about you.