Tirzah’s birth is the third birth I have photographed for Jessica and Jon. Their first son, Matthew, was diagnosed with Trisomy 18 during a routine ultrasound. They knew that Matthew might have a very short life. Jessica carried him to term but Matthew was stillborn. He was born surrounded by love and tears.
Less than year later, Jessica gave birth to a healthy baby boy, Asa.
I was thrilled when Jessica contacted me to let me know she was pregnant again. She is such a strong woman. She chose to give birth to Tirzah at the Bellingham Birth Center.
Local doula, Carolynn Slocum, was once again in attendance for this birth. Carolynn and I were at both of Jessica’s previous births so it was a reunion of sorts.
The Bellingham Birth Center has this sling hung from the ceiling which allows the laboring woman to lean on it for support during contractions. It also makes it easy for a support person to put pressure on her back. I have seen many of my clients benefit from laboring in this position.
And sometimes dads even benefit from using the sling.
Carolynn helped Jessica by using a method called sifting. A rebozo, or long piece of woven cloth, is placed under the laboring woman’s belly while the support person gently lifts up. This can offer pain relief during labor as well as help the baby maneuver into the optimal position for birth.
Tirzah was born and latched on like a champ for her first time nursing. I am always in awe of the way a baby is born and knows immediately how to nurse. Tirzah had the cutest little spiral of hair at the crown of her head.
I will never forget when I witnessed Jon holding his firstborn son, Matthew. He cradled him just like this and told him, tears streaming down his face, just how much he loved him. I have flashed back to that moment at the birth of his two live children, Asa and Tirzah. I have such admiration for Jon and Jessica as I have watched them walk this difficult road.
Alli Watkins, of Haven Midwifery, has been with Jon and Jessica through all three pregnancies.
Congratulations, Jessica, Jon, and Asa. I know that Tirzah is a very loved addition to your growing family.
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