A mad dash through the mountains to a Homebirth!
It was the day after a late night at our Gala. I would like to write about the gala, and had planned to, but the birth trumped it for me. I would rather share this beauty with you. We were washing dishes in the little tiny kitchen at the caterer’s. The back door was open to views of the mountain, the grass ridiculously green for this area. I could smell the herbs growing in a small kitchen garden. We worked quickly and mostly quietly. I liked drying the silverware, liked the shininess of the knives and spoons – and I especially liked the simplicity of the act. It was doable. We were paged with an early labor – a labor happening at home way out in the eastern mountains – far. An hour away. This mama has had many homebirths with us and I had already attended two of them. I was looking forward to being there. It is stunning in its quiet beauty in the forest.
This however was not quiet – the first page was an early labor “heads-up.” The second happened while we were at another, slower moving labor. I had run to our local grocery, was standing at the meat counter talking to one of our back-up OBs about this that and another thing, when the phone call came – a quick, and urgent phone call. ”We need to leave now!” It’s an hours drive and we weren’t sure we would make it. I ran through the aisles looking for Kaya. I called to the OB who was at the next cashier, “Hey! Wanna come – homebirth in the mountains - it’s stunningly beautiful out there.” He shook his head, “I have something I have to do, and it is definitely not a homebirth an hour away!” He smiled a HUGE smile, and told me to have fun as I madly ran out to my car – Kaya behind me!
Kaya was dropped, rather suddenly, at a friend’s home, who luckily was there. (“Mom, other kids don’t have childhoods like this! Their mothers don’t screech around to births all the time……”) And I parked my car at the entrance to the canyon, and was picked up by Joan and the two students (Treska too!) My arms were full of yumminess – hearth bread, a tomato, a purple onion, cheese, sliced turkey, cameras, clothes – chocolate covered raisins and peanuts all spilling all over the place – I jumped in the car. I even got the front seat!
The road was windy, curvy and wet. It was hard for Joan not to speed, but she didn’t. She consciously tried to keep slow and to be safe. There are hairpin curves and drop offs – and I was glad to feel safe enough. Then the next phone call came from the papa, “What should I do if she has to push? She’s pushing.” Oh goodness – Joan asked me, in all seriousness, if she should drive the straightaway at 60, 75 or 90. We chose 60, if we had been stopped by an officer, well it would have taken even more time. That was the logic. But 60 felt impossibly slow!
Anyhow – we made it. We arrived safely, down the dirt roads, past the trailers, down the hill, the tiny old, old church, the barn with the horses bucking because of the weather, the thunder. We pulled up and ran into the house. That feeling – my heart feeling like it would burst out of my chest. The apprentices in the back with the most emergent equipment ready – handed us the gloves and we dashed in. Breathe in – look completely calm, breathe out, open the door. Walk in – quietly. It was so quiet when we found them. Quiet. Still. Perfect laboring. No baby yet!
The rain came in suddenly and gustily. Then the hail. The lightening so close, the thunder vibrating the little home. We drank tea, ate granola bars, chatted. I had forgotten my crochet – (in the craziness) and we waited for the little baby to join us.
And he did. Perfectly.