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This is a story of the birth of our daughter Ayv Rose.
I started having contractions around 2 AM, although I didn’t think they were contractions and instead felt that I’d thrown my back out! However, when they suddenly worsened, and I realized they were in fact contractions Ido called our doula to come over. She arrived at the apartment around 5 AM where I labored for another hour until I couldn’t take it anymore.
We called an Uber and headed to the hospital. I was moaning and screaming in pain, and couldn’t breathe or see straight. My doula kept telling me to exhale in a low tone, but I kept yelling in a high pitch, so halfway through my contraction (and crying) I would go low and sounded like a donkey! I can only imagine what the Uber driver must have thought—it was hilarious!
Upon arrival, they wheeled me into triage to check me, at which point I was six centimeters dilated. I begged for an epidural, and it was a gift from God!!! We spent the day at the hospital waiting as my contractions slowed down, but when it was finally time push around 6 pm, I pushed so hard that I went cross-eyed, literally. It was intense. She was born shortly after 7 pm, and Ido and I both cried when we saw her.
We didn’t have a birth plan or go to a birthing class, but we did hire a doula and assumed the rest would sort itself out. I have to say one of the more unexpected parts of the process was not how exhausted I was from the birth but rather how exhausted I was during the 4th trimester because I didn’t sleep! Therefore, I can’t express enough to newly pregnant moms: rest as much as possible, take help when it’s offered, be kind, patient, and flexible with yourself. Childbirth and becoming a new mom is the hardest and most rewarding thing you will ever do in your life. Nothing will go as planned, but breathe through it and try to go with the flow as much as possible.