The Birth of Caius

I have known Katie for several years and I think she was just as excited about having her birth photographed as I was. Katie is an extremely driven mama. She ran a FULL marathon at almost 21 weeks pregnant. She didn't show for a long time and actually announced her pregnancy by posting a photo post-marathon with a shirt that read "Marathon Mom with an acorn hanging on" on the front and "Running 26.2 for two" on the back. Her due date just happened to hit exactly on February 29th, leap year. Katie never made it to 40 weeks with her prior three children, so the chances of her making it to her due date with her 4th baby was slim. But like I said, Katie is extremely driven. She was determined to wait to have her leap year baby. 

Somehow the days passed and she made it all the way to Monday, February 29th. She met her midwife out at WomanKind Midwives clinic along with the news to cover her hopeful leap year baby. They interviewed and filmed her and her midwife as they checked the baby's heart beat. Before leaving the clinic, her midwife stripped her membranes to "get things going." She went on a 2.15 mile run mid-morning. She told me she decided to stop once she felt the contractions really pick up. 

That early afternoon, I walked in to Katie's hospital room after getting an urgent text message from her hubby saying everything was moving pretty quick and to get there fast. But things slowed down a bit once she got settled in to her hospital room. The room was completely silent. There was one light above the tub and natural light filtering through the window screens. Katie was silently meditating in the tub hardly making a ripple in the water. Her husband sat beside her silently supporting her with his presence. It was a beautiful serene atmosphere. I didn't feel like I was in a hospital at all.

For an hour I could not tell when she was having her contractions and when she wasn't. She was completely calm throughout what she described as unbearable back labor. Once she decided to get out of the tub to speed things along, the contractions came in a way that she couldn't keep silent anymore. The nurses, midwife, and even I couldn't believe how limber and agile Katie was. She would move from laying down to standing up in the hospital bed in half a second without assistance. She was completely listening to her body and moving in any position that relieved that pain. 

She then moved off the bed, back to the tub, and back to the bed within 10 minutes. Once she found her comfortable side position, pushing began. It didn't take but a couple of pushes until beautiful Caius was born. 

It was the perfect afternoon

It was the perfect afternoon

Still and calm moments

Still and calm moments

Sometimes husband's presence is support enough

Sometimes husband's presence is support enough

husband's touch

husband's touch

trying to cool down

trying to cool down

Such a dark and calm atmosphere with husband relieving wife's back labor

Such a dark and calm atmosphere with husband relieving wife's back labor

Mama told us later she tried to wait one more minute for the birth minutes to align with the date, but baby Caius was ready to come out!

Mama told us later she tried to wait one more minute for the birth minutes to align with the date, but baby Caius was ready to come out!

Sweet relief

Sweet relief

Dad taking a first photo of his son

Dad taking a first photo of his son

First latch

First latch

pure joy of her son finally being here

pure joy of her son finally being here

Announcing to her other 3 kids that their brother had arrived

Announcing to her other 3 kids that their brother had arrived