Giving Birth in Greenville, SC

Today my wife and I are thanking God for the healthy delivery of a big baby boy, William Christopher Szrama, born last night (June 24, 2012) at 11:07 PM and weighing in at 10 lb 6 oz and 22 1/4″ long.  He’s a big boy, two pounds heavier and an inch longer than his sister at birth, but Christina still powered through a natural labor and delivery in even finer form than before.

William was born at the Upstate Birth Center where Christina labored in a giant birthing tub that drastically increased her ability to relax through contractions.  When it came time to deliver William, our midwives’ experience (and pint of olive oil) helped bring him into the world with minimal harm to Christina and no trouble for the baby.  In a matter of minutes after the delivery, the room was clean and Christina was convalescing on a comfy bed with William in arms already happily feeding.

Welcoming William Christopher into this bright, cold world.

Not the best picture, but it gets the point across – we’re excited!

The best part about the experience was that in two hours, we went home to recover in the comfort of our own home with family there to help us welcome William into this cold, bright but quiet world.  No waiting at the hospital with beeps and lights and strangers and awkward back-up pediatricians (like, super awkward).  It was so peaceful I can see now why so many of our friends prefer home births, but Christina’s sold on the tub and I’m not quite ready to make that leap yet.

We were actually sad to be leaving Louisville before the birth of our baby, because we did have a good experience giving birth at Clark Memorial Hospital in Jeffersonville, IN.  However, Greenville proved to be even more hospitable to natural birth, and I will gladly recommend Mereinda at the Upstate Birth Center to anyone looking to deliver in a peaceful environment into the hands of a woman who bore ten of her own children and has delivered countless others for dozens of years.

But I digress… it’s not about the midwife – it’s about the momma!

William’s birth was an exciting, wonderful adventure with Christina playing the part of protagonist to perfection.  She powered through transition and the second stage of labor to go from 7 cm dilated to baby in hand in about 25 minutes.  It was surreal – I simply couldn’t believe we saw him so soon after she measured 7 cm.  With Éowyn we spent two days just to get to pushing and then still had another 30 – 45 minutes before I got to hoist her into this life.

In short – Christina was awesome, and I found myself immensely proud of this woman who would suffer through such pain to bring our son into this world in a wonderful display of strength, agony, and love.

Proverbs 5 warns of the woman who would tempt you away into infidelity, but Solomon leaves out a powerful reason to dismiss her charms with nary a second thought – no other woman will gladly bear your sons and daughters, serving them with the nourishment of her body, the pain of her labor, and a love that sustains her through a thousand sleepless nights.

Welcome to the world, little one. Your mother and father love you very much.