I had already given birth six times prior to this pregnancy with three of those births being at home with my husband. But things were different during this pregnancy and we sensed that we needed to be at a hospital, or have a midwife at a minimum. We weren’t terribly excited about the hospital option because we have a pretty hands off approach to birth. So during the effort to find a like-minded midwife, a common friend told Natalia of our need and she kindly went out of her way to help us even though we had not yet become acquainted.
In my searching I also came across Natalia’s blog in which she wrote about her last birth a couple of years ago. I was deeply moved by her story and couldn’t help but be drawn to this woman of character and strength. My husband too was impressed and we knew that we had found the one we wanted to have present at our son’s birth if at all possible. After a lot of prayer and talking through our options, we chose to go to the hospital and asked Natalia to join us.
And were we ever glad we did! The hospital ended up being just fine it was me who was the problem. Natalia’s knowledge ended up being invaluable. For a couple of weeks previous to the birth, I joked that my uterus seemed to have forgotten what it was supposed to do this time around. But as the nights of false and unproductive labor dragged on it wasn’t quite as funny anymore. I was exhausted and had little reserves of energy left when labor actually began.
Several hours later, my contractions began to slow down and I just wanted to lay in bed and go to sleep. It was Natalia who recognized what was going on and encouraged me to get up; and to get me up she suggested that I go to the bathroom. I didn’t think I needed to and really didn’t want to, but I trusted her judgment. Upon moving around the contractions came back in earnest and I was holding my son in less than half an hour. Natalia is a life (and labor) saver! (She was right about the bathroom too, by the way.) Had she not been with us and nudged in her gentle, decisive way I would have had an unnecessarily prolonged labor. Thank you, Natalia!
Natalia knew what was needed and when. A bath, a sip of water, an encouraging word- or a bathroom break! And when she was simply in the background watching and waiting for those needs, her presence was a source of peace. I will be forever grateful for her knowledge and kindness.