Happy birthday, Nora!

I’ve spent a considerable amount of time thinking about all the ways I was disappointed in both of my experiences giving birth. I had been forming a post about it, yet again. Then I woke up and realized today is my best friend’s daughter’s fourth birthday, and reflected on that instead.

It would be easy to focus on all the ways the birth of Nora was what I wanted out of my experiences, but for some reason that jealousy rarely seeps through.

There is an unbreakable connection to be there for the birth of a friend’s child. To be witness to all the pain and joy and ecstasy and fear. To know that someone trusts you enough to let you into that moment.

There were several friends gathered that Solstice night.  A true birth day party. We held space in the room, equal measures present and unintrusive. There was a rhythm to our encouragement and the midwife’s ministrations, a mix of business and anticipation as we waited to welcome baby Nora into the world.

Finally the moment arrived, and it was amazing. It was my only birth experience entirely from this side of the uterus, and we all let out our collective breath as this not-so-tiny life took her first.

We tucked her parents into bed and dreamed of name choices.  One by one we excused ourselves to let them get aquatinted and discover each other; leaving with awe that we had been so lucky to see these first moments. This moment when Nora became part of our crazy tribe of semi-feral children.

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