This wasn’t Bekkah Sorfo-Heafey’s first rodeo. She’d given birth before: once in a hospital and twice at home. But it hadn’t been quite like this. She recently posted on our Facebook forum to share her story, and it garnered nearly 2,000 likes. Members were fascinated by her perspective, so we asked if she’d be up for a blog feature. Her conviction that strength can triumph over fear is a valuable insight we can all take on board as we navigate the journey to parenthood. This is Bekkah’s story, as told to Alanna Schiffer.
“I woke up suddenly at 2am and ran to the bathroom thinking I needed to pee. It was then that I noticed that my water had started to trickle. I stood in the shower trying to clean myself up and tried to relax through the contractions while I waited until a more reasonable hour to wake the midwife up.
“Around 6:30am I paged her, and kept waiting for the surges to get more intense — every time one would start, I’d tell myself that it’s not that painful yet, so there was still plenty of time. The midwife agreed there was no rush. About an hour later, my 8 year old poked her head through the door while I was on the phone with the midwife again and said, “Mom, what’s happening to you?” I let her know that I was just having the baby.”
Oh, just having a baby, no big deal!
“Eventually it dawned on me that I needed to push. I grabbed some towels and an old bedsheet and threw them down on my bathroom floor. I started on my hands and knees, but wanted to make sure that I caught the baby, so I moved into a squatting position and braced myself with one arm. As I reached down and his head started to crown in my hand — and our puppy busted into the bathroom and started giving me kisses on the face! I could hear my 10 year old and my partner outside the room and yelled, “Someone come get the dog, I’m having the baby!”
Has your dog considered a career in midwifery? It has a great sense of timing.
“They didn’t realize the top of the baby’s head was literally in my hand, but they called for the puppy to come and shut the door for me. I felt like my body had been put on pause for a moment — I didn’t quite know how to make myself start giving birth again. I knew I was feeling afraid and that my anxiety was starting to peak, which could make a good situation turn bad. So, in an instant, I decided that I could choose to feel something besides fear. I kept chanting “Come on baby, come on baby, come on baby,” like a very quiet cheerleader. I felt myself relax and in three pushes, my newborn son, Sage, slid into my hands!
“I picked him up and started to run a bath to sit in while I waited for the placenta to dislodge itself from my uterine wall. My partner had finished cleaning up the kitchen with the older children and came in to check on me. He wasn’t the least bit surprised that Sage was in my arms and couldn’t contain his excitement! He helped me throw away the towels and bedsheet and clean up the bathroom. I was still in the tub with Sage when the midwives arrived and when they asked me if I wanted to cut his cord I said it was ok and that they could — I did want them to be a part of his birth, after all! Together, we invited his dad to enjoy some skin-to-skin and called his siblings up to my bedroom to come and meet their brand new baby brother.”
Congratulations on your new addition, Bekkah and family. We’re relieved that everything turned out well, and that you have a particularly exciting story to share with your little one when he grows up.
Rebekkah Sorfo-Heafey full spectrum doula on the journey to becoming a midwife. Birth culture is her passion. Positive, life-changing experiences with her own doula and midwife gave her the hope that she could be brave and powerful with her life.
“If women lose the right to say where and how they birth their children, then they will have lost something that’s as dear to life as breathing.” – Ami McKay, The Birth House
*Opinions expressed are those of the author, and not necessarily those of Parent Life Network or their partners.