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Yeah, our beautiful little baby girl was born happily and speedily (after a few long days of prodomal labor!) at home in the bathtub. Her papa and midwife caught her. Yay homebirths! I don't plan on having another at the hospital again!

Name: Alice Lucina
Born: Sept. 16th, 6:59 pm
7 pounds, 6 ounces
19 inches long

----------------------------------------------------------
BIRTH STORY
Alice Lucina has Arrived...and now that she's here, I've nearly forgotten those final few weeks of the dreaded wait. This pregnancy (#2) was so incredibly different from the first. But alas, how can one think of anything besides babies once they finally have their newborn in arms? We are fully in the babymoon now...that and making headway with the family adjustments of taking care of two kiddos (whew! is all I can say about that right now).

Alice Lucina was born Sunday, September 16th, 2007 at 6:59 p.m. at home, according to plan. After having passed all of the dates we had placed bets on, the baby dropping into place a few weeks earlier, and then having a strong false alarm a few nights earlier that had us up all night with watch clock in hand and DH calling in with the "I'll be out of the office" plan rolling into gear...it was followed by intermittent contractions for 5 more days (ugh). All in all though, Alice's actual arrival was fast to say the least.

Fortunately with the delay, I decided to ask my mom to come on up for her visit a few weeks early. If the baby came while she was here, we'd be thankful, to say the least. And if she didn't, it'd be helpful at this stage of the pregnancy. She was DD's #1 all weekend long and having Oma here during the final stages of labor was, well, we don't know how we would've done it. When my contractions finally picked up again AND remained steady and constant, it was Sunday. They remained nicely spaced all day long. In the afternoon they picked up enough that my walk down the block with DH lasted about 60 feet. I couldn't seem to let go of the fence next door after one of the contractions and DH was starting to wonder if he should just carry me back (like he could at my size!). Alice had remained soooooo low for soooooo long (just like DD did during the actual active labor). The last few weeks of the pregnancy I wasn't going anywhere this time due to discomforts and fatigue...and of course the constant expectations of things getting started. I just kept wondering when my labor was going to kick into high gear and whether or not it'd be fast when it did come. And so it was.

At last at 5 o'clock on Sunday, my contractions were steadily headed in the right direction, closer and stronger, so the midwife and her assistant headed on over. We were blessed to have both living only a mile away, so they literally arrived a few minutes later. We hung out in the bedroom chatting between contractions. Now if you know me, then you know that I can almost always put on a happy face when people are around. Likewise, having people in my presence makes me happy. It completely alters my state of mind...but after a few contractions and then a large quiet space with nothing, the ladies took a stack of books into the living room and left DH and I to labor on. A matter of fact, within minutes it took off again and I was interested in getting into the bathtub for a soak. I was thinking, "I don't want to miss my window to enjoy some warm water during this labor," remembering that it was soooo nice while laboring with DD.

However, once in the tub, the contractions picked up again. And they just kept on coming, steady and faster and faster. DH was my backrest, stretched across the back of the tub bracing me as I hit each peak faster and faster. And suddenly that fine line between 'pushy' and 'pushing' feelings hit me. The midwives decided they'd better get set up fast. Just an hour earlier I had been 5 cm. dilated and we were all wondering if DD would come before midnight. And only an hour later DD was starting to get a bit worried about her mama's "singing" (thanks Oma for the distraction)...and three pushes later, Alice slipped into her Papa's hands right in the warmth of the tub! When she first made her debut, DH said, "It looks just like DD!"

It was beyond quick! Magical. Exciting. Exhausting. And at once completely fulfilling.

And now she's here. Alice Lucina. We named Alice for her two wonderful great grandmothers. We are so incredibly blessed to have such a precious little one. Alice is tranquil but noticeably more communicative than Helen was. She purrs, chirps, squeaks, clicks, and on occasion can let out a mighty wail. She is sleeping a lot, nursing like a champ, and peacefully gazes at us and her new home when she is awake. She's beautiful.

And DD is handling the transition really, really well. She is excited about her new "Bay-bee" and is of course experiencing all of the emotions that one experiences as they welcome a new family member into the fold. All week she recounted her version of the birth story, which was beyond cute. It goes like this:
"Bay-bee. Bay-bee.
Mama.
[Grunting noises. More grunting.]
Mama.
Bay-bee.
Waaaaa! Waaaaa!
Bay-bee."

We are so incredibly in love with our two little girls. We keep saying, "I can't believe we are a 'girl family' (for the time being anyhow)!" We really felt like we were having a boy this time. We did last time too! And another true surprise! So much for our intuition with fine details. OK, pictures everyone....

RIGHT AFTER BIRTH 1
http://i229.photobucket.com/albums/e...C/DSC01109.jpg

RIGHT AFTER BIRTH 2
http://i229.photobucket.com/albums/e...C/DSC01108.jpg

NURSING
http://i229.photobucket.com/albums/e...C/DSCF2041.jpg

FAMILY 10 MINUTES LATER
http://i229.photobucket.com/albums/e...C/DSCF2026.jpg

ALICE - DAY 1
http://i229.photobucket.com/albums/e...C/DSCF2098.jpg

ALICE - DAY 5
http://i229.photobucket.com/albums/e...C/DSCF2178.jpg
http://i229.photobucket.com/albums/e...C/DSCF2157.jpg

"We have a secret in our culture, and it's not that birth is painful.
It's that women are strong." -- by Laurie Stavoe Harm

Thanks for reading!
 
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