Our Maya is 3 years old today. So many things have happened in the past three years… yet, this little girl was the center of it all. The day she joined our lives, everything changed; our priorities, our mission, our purpose.
We never felt like we had to have everything figured out before starting a family. Still, we were new to this country and it took us some time to find our place here. We were already married six years when we found out I was pregnant. It was a fabulous and exciting day for us.
And then I went to my first doctor’s check and was very disappointed. The nurse had about two minutes for me and the doctor had about 50 seconds. I had so many questions and was ready to have a long conversation, but there were many other ladies in the waiting room so they rushed to finish with me and go on.
I had some very bad experiences with doctors and hospitals in the past and this didn’t add anything good to the mix. I decided that I don’t want to go back there and that I don’t want to give birth at the hospital.
I started searching for other options and found a natural birthing center 25 minutes drive from our house. After our fist visit to the center, I knew we found a great place to deliver our baby.
Labor started at 5 am July 18th, 2010. 7 days after my due date. The midwife told us to keep an eye on the clock and to stay put. We stayed in the house, walking around, lying on the sofa, trying to breath through the contractions. My mom was here from Israel to help us out, so at least he had very good food.
Even though the contractions were very strong, they weren’t consistent. We ended up driving to the birth center at 11 pm that night. When we got there I was 4 cm dilated and by 2 am, three hours later, I was 8 cm dilated. We were sure the baby was going to be in our arms very soon, especially because the contractions were two minutes apart at that point and it was really hard to just breath through them. I had to push.
Another hour went by and another. We tried this position and that. In the tub, out of the tub, I even walked around. Nothing happened, my cervix will not dilate to 10 cm, it was stuck at 8. This baby was not coming out.
At 3 pm July 19th, 34 hours after my labor started, the midwife announced it was time to go to the hospital. My husband and I were both exhausted and frustrated by then. The “hospital” word sent us over the edge and I remember looking at him and bursting into tears. He joined me immediately. This was not how WE planned it.
When we got there, the doctor took one look at me and reached for the strongest medicine he had lying around (or so it seems to me…), because it sent me to the deepest sleep. I only slept two hours, but it seemed like I disappeared from planet earth for a week.
Although I didn’t want to be there, connected to all those monitors and needles, I quickly realized that the most important thing was my baby’s health, and so with renewed energy I was ready to get her out.
They started giving me pitocin (labor inducer), a little bit at a time to get me to dilate to 10 cm. I didn’t feel anything at that point because of the epidural, so we just waited until the monitor announced I should push (this was very weird to me, not to feel a thing…).
I started pushing at 9:40 pm and Maya was out 40 minutes later, at 10:20 pm, 40 hours and 20 minutes after labor started. I can’t find the words to describe the feeling of finally getting to hold this baby in my arms.
I have to say that the hospital treated us great. I still wish I had Maya at the birthing center, naturally, but over all I can’t complain. I realized later how little thought I gave to the fact that my delivery might not actually happen the way I envisioned it. I wasn’t ready for things to get complicated. My plan was set and I didn’t want to think about plan B.
I had the best crew; my mom, my husband and a midwife who stayed with us until the morning after I gave birth. I think it was the longest shift of her life… I am deeply thankful to them for taking care of me and being patient.
Or the river.
She loves playing in the sand.
Maya loves vegetables and fruit. She helps in the garden every day.
And spending time with her little sister.
Maya is independent, mature, bossy, calm, caring, foolish, happy, responsible, sensitive, shy, and a very talkative girl.
Maya changed our lives. She made us into a family. She taught us how strong love can be and we are blessed to have her in our lives.
Happy birthday Maya, may we celebrate many more birthdays together!
~Love, Daddy and Mommy~