My dear baby Raisa, you have finally arrived, 7 days late, but absolutely worth every minute of the wait! Your birth was absolutely lovely and I could not have asked for anything better. We had the birth tub set up in the big bedroom, in our usual spot, so you were born in the exact same place that both Nicolas and Mariana were born in. You were born late on a Friday night, when Nicolas and Miguel were at Nana’s house but Mariana was home with your father and me. That was all just as well, because Nicolas and Miguel didn’t really want to be there, and Mariana did.
I was in labor with you for just four hours. Right beforehand Mariana, Daddy, and I went out to dinner together at Mama Carolla’s which was unusual for us and special. It was incredibly warm — there were people seated at outside tables on the 19th of February (with heaters, but still — how often does that happen?). And on your actual birthday it was 72 degrees, which I expect you will never again see unless you are on vacation.
After that special dinner, Mariana, Daddy and I went on a starlit walk through Butler. We walked all over, and even climbed the steps of the bell tower so that we could look down on the reflection pond. When we started walking, I started having contractions every 3 minutes, and I started to think, maybe this is finally it. Maybe I’m in labor and soon I’m going to meet my sweet Raisa. That walk was so beautiful and magical, and I could not imagine a more promising way to begin your entry into the world.
After we came back from our long walk, we came inside and setting things up for your birth, just in case it was actually happening. Mariana Googled music for labor, and she played that for me for awhile until I had to switch to my Hypnobabies audio tracks. You will learn about this when you are older, but what helps with natural childbirth is to be as relaxed as possible so that you can manage the intensity of the experience. Listening to those Hypnobabies tracks helped me stay relaxed and focused.
I climbed in the tub and stayed there for the entire time until you were born, a little before 1 in the morning on the 20th of February. Mariana and your father both got to watch you be born, and also to watch you snuggle and nurse for the first time. I went through a stressful half hour trying to get you to settle down and nurse, but eventually you did.
The midwives weighed you and checked you out, and it turned out you were a tiny little thing 7 pounds 5 ounces. Then we all went to bed, cuddled together. I felt so joyful to get to meet you, my darling Raisa, and welcome you with love into our family. You are so adored and so loved.