A new life...

My sister Jen was exactly one week overdue last Saturday. She was like any other tired, swollen mama that is past her due date--she just wanted that little fattie out. I met up with her and her husband at the hospital. I walked into her room just as they were about to give her an epidural at 5 cm. I waited out in the hallway and listened to the other moms who were giving birth just a few feet away from me behind closed doors. There was alot of activity, nurses and OB's running around, so I knew there were lots of women giving birth that day. But what struck me as odd was the fact that it was so quiet. I think I heard one mom grunting a little and then a few seconds later, cries from a baby. One mom.

The hospital is a very sterile, quiet and controlled environment to give birth in. Doctors don't like surprises. What I missed was the primalness of it all. The excitement of the pending birth. The rawness of a mother who is big with child, sweating, groaning, grunting and crying out from the effort of it. There is power in that rawness. I remember feeling like I could conquer the world right in the moments after I had pushed out my child into the warm water. Powerful. Strong. Womanly. Beautiful.

Justin went out to get something to eat and Jen was comfortable after getting her epidural. The funny thing about being there in the hospital with a mom who is dead from the waist down is this...you're pretty useless. There are no breathing exercises to breathe, no need to rub the mom's back because she can't feel anything anyway, no ice chips to administer, no soothing, encouraging words to murmur. You just sit there and watch the movie channel and the fetal heart monitor go up and down. And wonder if you can get in on those ice chips.

So I took a little cat nap. In the middle of a birth, imagine that.

Jen joked that I would rather see her screaming in pain. Heh. There is some truth to that, I suppose. But I was with her for her last two births, and I definitely did not enjoy seeing her in pain. And truth be told, I would get an epidural in a heartbeat if I had a baby in the hospital. I did during my first labor--it was a lifesaver.

The bummer was, I didn't actually get to see Stella Purple Richards born in the early evening on Saturday, March 28th, 2009 because I had to go home briefly. I thought she had a while to go, and I had to wait for Michael to get home so he could stay with the kids. She is my first niece that I didn't get to see make her entrance into the world. I didn't get to hold onto my sister's hamhock thigh. I didn't get to give dirty looks to the nurse who barks out the push count. I didn't get to see Stella's squishy little face the moment they laid her on my little sister's chest. I was a little sad about that.

She is beautiful and fat. 10 lbs. 3 oz.! My sister has them child-bearing hips cuz that is one big baby. And remarkably, Jen is feeling good. Not like she just pushed out a baby heavier than a sack of Idaho potatoes.

See, no moaning, no cool cloths on the forehead, just chillin', watching Hancock and chatting.

Big sister Selah meeting her new baby sister.

Jen got a big kick out of Selah, who thought Stella would want to hear Alladin, which was playing on TV. She put the speaker up to her ear.

From the beginning, Selah said that Stella was going to be her "purple sister". Stella Purple just stuck. We all rubbed Jen's stomach and called her Stella Purple. Now it's on her birth certificate.

Jen looks radiant just after giving birth to this big baby girl. This is her third girl in three years. Woohoo!

Justin and big sister #2 Sophia.

She is the cutest, most chubbiest baby ever. And she smelled like heaven. I love her already!


  1. can't wait to meet her!

  2. Can't wait to meet my precious angel. 5 days past due right now. And about that 'primalness'? The birth tub is ready and waiting to receive our new life.

    Congrats to you all! Momma looks AWESOME!

  3. Congratulations to the pearmama family for a big healthy baby girl!

    INcidentally....Stella Purple weighed more than my twins did put together! That's a lot of baby!

  4. I love the baby's name.. I also love the way Selah looks in that pic.. :) I miss her in my class. :)

  5. welcome, stella purple!

    she looks so small, but 10 pounds! yikes. hope your sister and her family are all doing well.


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