Go to work, for a long shift, plow snow, do animal chores, haul a little firewood, deliver a baby, make supper. Just a normal Tuesday on the farm.
I know over the years I have unintentionally, we will say “given Mike opportunities” to do things that he never would have guessed he would do. Own a farm, raise his own livestock, tend a garden, deliver his daughter. That’s right, he delivered our little girl last week. The midwife was on her way but baby decided not to wait.
I share a lot of what goes on around here but the stuff that is the most “close to home” I like to keep “close to home”. I want to share this story because I am so amazed and proud of my husband.
I hadn’t been feeling real great Monday night to Tuesday, but by the time it was time for me to go to work Tuesday night I was feeling better, so in I went. I figured it was only a 4 hour shift and not strenuous by any means, there was no reason not to go. I had been there about an hour and a half when I began to feel uncomfortable again. Slight contractions but mostly uncomfortable. A bit later a co-worker asked if I was going to make it through my shift. I had planned to but wasn’t totally sure. A half hour later I headed home, knowing the roads were terrible and the drive would be a slow one. I needed to be able to walk to my car and drive home and if this was labor I didn’t want to be stuck at work. (I can see the hospital from my office window but had no intention of ending up there.)
Mike was working an extra long shift due to the snow we had been getting and wasn’t home when I arrived. I called him to say I was home. Then I called Rebekah, the midwife,
“I think I’m in labor. I know the roads are awful and I would hate to have you come on a false alarm but if you don’t mind, it might be a good idea to head this direction.”
(She was only 1 1/2 hours away. Much closer than when our little boy was born.) She was on her way with her apprentice within 15 minutes and had called a second apprentice to meet her here as well.
I called my dad to see if it was ok that the little boy stayed a bit longer.
“That’s just fine. Call if you need anything; I’ve pulled a lot of calves in my day!”
We had a good laugh. (It’s not the first time I have been likened to a cow. Some might take offense, but hey, if the shoe fits! Haha!)
I decided to try to relax by taking a hot shower. At some point Mike arrived home and checked in to see how I was doing.
He was headed out to plow snow and take care of the animals.
“Flash the porch light if you need something.” (He wouldn’t be able to hear the dinner triangle in the truck.)
When he got back in from chores I headed upstairs. He was getting things from the birth kit (supplies ordered and on hand for home births) ready for when Rebekah arrived. Checking in every little while on me and on the phone with her giving updates.
M:”She said she’s doing good. She hasn’t been able to time contractions yet.”
R:”Has her water broke yet?”
M:”Has your water broke?”
R:”Ok, you have some time then.”
A:”My water broke.”
After that I’m not sure how the conversation went. Mike kept checking in and preparing.
M:”Are you doing ok? Going to make it til she gets here in about 45 minutes?”
A:”I’m fine. I will make it… I’m sorry, I know you didn’t want to catch but you’re going to have to.”
M:”I see that. I’m just looking for gloves.”
A:”They are in the… You don’t need gloves!”
Two quick pushes.
M:”Well do you want to know?” “It’s a girl!”
I held her as he cleaned her up. He called the midwife with the update. We had a half hour or so and used the time to let our parents and siblings know.
The ladies arrived and did their midwife thing and helped clean up. My parents brought up the little boy for a quick visit and brought supper. Mike got that going and the night went on. For how he handled everything, you would think this was just a regular Tuesday night.
I’ve said it before and I will say it again, “Everything works out as God plans it is to be and there is never a dull moment on the farm.”
We are very thankful for Rebekah Knapp for her prenatal care and venturing out to help us on delivery night. A thank you to Molly and Karissa too! All wonderful women to work with.