Well, it looks like my waters just broke. It smelled like baby and had small white flakes in it. Quite typical. I don’t have real contractions yet. I’ll wait and see…. and go to sleep first. We’ll see what the night brings. A beautiful morning a nice day to have a baby. The night was calm. I expected things to start after my waters had broken. In the beginning contraction came closer together but then I slept quite well in between, woke up every 15 or 30 minutes. Baby was awake and moving a lot. I wondered about lots of things. I had much time after all. But I still slept quite well, I think. I just made breakfast for the kids. We’ll see. I do have regular contrations, but I can still hide them, don’t have to breath through them. Let’s see how things progress today… 8th September 2016, 3 p.m.: I just took one hour afternoon nap with my youngest. Slept 10 minutes, breathed through a contraction, continued sleeping. My husband and the other kids are out buying groceries. I called and told them not to dally. Birth seems to really start now…. (My family is returning from their shopping trip.) Husband: “Is the baby here already?” “No no, you were faster.” “We really hurried.” “You never know how fast it will be…” Husband: “We didn’t buy everything.” “You wouldn’t have to hurry like this. Anyway contractions are coming every few minutes.” “Very well, but when Sarah calls, usually things are urgent.” “Well, I only wanted you not to miss it.” “Anyway I have made myself ready here.” My youngest daughter comes running: “I want the umbrella, the umbrella!” “No, I need it myself.” (to shadow the camera lens.) Daughter: “But I want the umbrella, too!–What is this?” Mommy trying to protect the camera: “You better leave everything as it is.” Daughter (excited but not really understanding what is happening): “Mommy, can I sit here?” “No.” “Can i sit here?” “No!” My husband took the kids inside and placed them in front of the TV. Quietness returns to the garden. Contractions are pretty strong now and need all my attention. I feel in control sitting on the birthing ball like this, breathing through each contraction. It’s called labor and it really is hard work. My mouth gets dry. My husband starts chatting…. but I’m not really there. The next contraction is just around the corner. I can feel it coming…. Focus and breath…. Several waves later: Time to start pushing! Which I can do best while standing. Husband: “Do you want me to get the kids?” (I don’t know. Don’t ask me. I’m busy.) Husband, obviously still hoping for an answer: “…. or wait a little more?” No reply here! He finally understands. First pushing contraction! (The noise you hear in the background is the afternoon traffic in front of the house. You can tell it is 4 pm 😉 ) Second pushing contraction! It’s a huge feeling when the baby comes down through the pelvis. It felt like it needed lots of stretching there in the back. Third pushing contraction! Fourth pushing contraction…. The head becomes visible but slides back up at the end of the contraction. I talk to the baby at this point. “We are almost done!” I tell him. I know the head will be born with the next wave. “Don’t the kids want to watch?” I ask my husband. “I’ll call them again.” Husband calls to the kids: “The baby is coming in a few seconds, if you want to watch.” He instructs the kids: “But don’t go too close to Mommy. Better stay here in the shade.” My second son comments: “There is the head coming already.” The fifth pushing contration brings the head out. What a relief! I’m waiting for the shoulders to turn. It’s such an incredible feeling if the whole baby turns inside of you. The shoulders turn until the baby is facing sideways. Time for the last push! I’ve given birth standing up like this four times before. I always mananged to catch the baby without having to give it much of a thought. This time though the thought does not even touch my mind until the baby falls out. I pick him up immideately. Second son: “This was fast, wasn’t it?” I rub him and make sure he starts breathing. It’s not until a little later that I discover the cord has torn. “A boy!” “Are you angry?” My second son exclaims: “A boy!” Running and shouting to his siblings: “It’s a boy!” I finally notice the torn cord. What a pity for the blood that belongs to the baby and is now lost. But there is no way to putting the cord together again…. Oldest daughter: “You want me to get a towel for you?” “I do have towels here.–There they are.” Husband: “There is coming quite a lot of blood, Sarah.” “Yeah, the cord ripped.” Husband, worried: “But it’s running from the uterus!” No no.” (There was actually not much more blood beside what had come from the cord. But my husband had fear for bleeding kicking in for a moment.) Husband, as kids try to give me towels: “Let Mommy. She will say what she wants.” Oldest daughter: “He is so bloody.” “Yes, look. We ripped the cord.” Husband: “You didn’t catch this one.” “I didn’t catch this one, no.” Husband: “Luckily the ground is soft here.” Oldest Daughter: “Does he want the breast, the little one?” “Now you get some grip.” (He was really slippery before I dried him off.) My second son has a lot of questions at this point. About this birth and his own birth. Oldest daughter: “Mom, your belly is still big.” “His fingernails are pretty long.” Second son: “Didn’t you want to sit there?” Husband: “Ah yes, the time….” (meaning time of birth) “I set the clock in the camera. It should be exact.” “He looks well a little overdue.” (His birth was 13 days after the due date.) “Shall I go to the neighbors?” “No!” “But I want to show them (the baby).” Husband explains to him, why we won’t invite the neighbors over right now to show them the baby. “What’s up, Liese? You want to see?” “What is this? A baby?” “What kind of a baby is this?” “Hey, you cutie!” First son: “He has so much hair already!” “Is it a boy or a girl?” “A boy!” “Don’t annoy Johanna, please!” (His older sister was hoping for a little sister.) He latched on 15 minutes after birth already. Husband: “Placenta on the way already?” “Yes, I can feel it already.” “Do you want to have it with the baby in your arms or shall I take him?” “He severed the cord himself already….” “Well, I’ll see.” “Has he learned how to brestfeed now?” “Yes yes.” “You even have a vessel for the placenta ready.” “Yes, I do have everything here… but the cord is already separated anyway.” “We didn’t have this way of cutting the cord before.” “No, not this one.” “Somehow it didn’t occur to me that I had to catch him. I thought: Ah, nice, the shoulders turning….ähm….oh! 40 minutes later I birth the placenta. “It’s already detached.” I give it a quick check on the spot. It comes with a marginal cord insertion. Otherwise it looks complete, normal and healthy. Well, I think I’m gonna take a shower now.” Baby decides for more breastfeeding first. “How are you doing?” “Fine.” “Not feeling week in your legs?” “No.” “Shall I get you something to clean your feet?” “They are a little bloody….” “I can get you the blue outdoor slippers. We can wash them afterwards.” “That’s an idea….I can also go barefoot if I clean myself on the grass.” Okay, I’m taking a shower now.