December 21, 2008

What Yeva taught me...

It will be 2 weeks in day since we had our little Yeva. This 2 weeks were simply amazing. I am still tearing up when I remember the birth. But even more so I am in awe of how much Yeva and having her has taught me and us. I was talking to my friend ( who was my midwife too ) Rachel, and there was a very interesting observation that I found. With this baby I wake up every time just a minute or two BEFORE she would start crying at night. She said that she had that with ALL her babies. It made me realize that it is the way of HOW the baby comes in to the world and connections that the mother and the baby develop at birth. This birth made so many things be possible - just like God and Nature intended them to be. I have a connection that even I don't completely understand completely yet. THis is the first for me. With my daughter, we set the alarm ti make sure we don't miss feedings. We had "baby toys" : monitors, baby bouncer, swaddling blankets, etc... Nothing really seemed to work too. Just for a few minutes or so. Justin was a hard baby - crying ALL the time, fussing, not wanting anything, spitting up all the time - you name it. I swore that I would not have another child. Time passed though, the hard things got forgotten, I loved being a mom every minute, despite of the difficulties, so I got pregnant again. Had Nadya, also early, just even more so. I haven't been able to hold her or even see my little baby's face until she was 2 days old. I could just touch her in her warmer at NICU, and even then not too much, as to "not overstimulate the baby". I never went home after they released me from the hospital. I just sat on the chair by her warmer for the whole time she was in NICU, just leaving to pump...I refused to go home, despite of doctors and nurses telling me that they will take best care of the baby, and it will be better for me to rest. Rest - possibly, but how could I when my baby was not with me at home? So , I stayed, and bugged everyone, until they finally got sick of me and let me take her home. She was only 4lbs, but Heaven bless this young pediatrician ( who was not even our doctor), that believed me and said that the baby will do better with mom at home. But the fact that I was not able to connect to the baby right away had its consequences ( as I now understand and see it so clearly). Nadya had hard time growing. Hardest time nursing. Even more so - not just nursing, EATING period. She was the tiniest baby forever. At 18 months she would easily pass for a 6 -9 month old baby. She was quiet , but scary quiet. She wouldn't let us know if there was something wrong. She would just shut down. I think I got more gray hair from Nadya's birth and first year then from the whole life all together. I spent every day and every minute caring for her , somewhere deep inside wondering, if this day may be the last. So , so scary. We made more doctor's visits with her ( just to make sure she's ok, to ease our minds ) , then with Justin all together.
Now, all this said, I found out recently that neither one of them had to be born early. What I was made to believe was a medical problem, was a liability issue, with medical community protecting their butts, not thinking twice of what the consequences would be for the babies. 2 and 3rd opinions ( both OBs! I wish I found them earlier!) BOTH confirmed the same thing - babies did NOT need to be born early. There was NO real reason. Yet I was made to believe the opposite. And I believed in it so much , I was grateful for doctors, "saving my babies lives" ,when in reality it was just simple "convenience". Convenience of paycheck and a vacation.

With Yeva the story is COMPLETELY different. I love her just as much as I love my other children, but I have a connection with her, that I longed for and never had with any other child. I wake up before she does to feed her. I know what she needs. I feel what's bothering her. I can tell if her grunting is the one of discomfort or the one of playing. I have a beautiful swing. I never use it. Well - never use it for the purpose of the swing, I do lay her down here for a few minutes when she is asleep, so that I can use 2 hands to make food. She sleeps with me , the bassinet is there for when I am really tired. I love holding her. I don't mind carrying her all day long. As a matter of fact, I would rather. I took her for a walk in the stroller, and I don't know who wanted it more : she , for me to pick her up, or I. Yeva slept most of the walk, waking up just as we were coming to the house, and did not like finding herself all alone wrapped in a blanket instead of my arms. I hated the fact that I couldn't pick her up. I never had that before. I know that it is the connection that we created during her birth. I know this is the connection that can only happen when mother truly experiences the birth as it is intended to be : pure, beautiful , REAL, without intervention, without someone butting in and robbing the mother of what God intended to be, by squishing the baby out, because the shift is ending. Yeva is also my first baby that does not have jaundice or has not lost any weight ( NONE , not even a 1/2 oz) since birth. She is 7 lb 5 oz today ( after eating), which means her weight is probably around 7-2, 7-3, which makes her gain 12-13 oz since birth. A little less then an ounce per day - perfect weight gain for the baby. She rapidly gained over the first few days ( just the opposite of hospital babies that I had - they both lost weight) , and slowed down a touch now. We had a two week checkup with our pediatrics, and she''s perfect!ol0 And the amazing thing is that I knew that before I was even told that. With my "hospital" babies I HAD to hear more then one doctor , and then read about everything, and then have about 100 blessings so that I could be at peace that my babies were ok. I think a huge part of it is the pregnancy too. I completed the pregnancy with Yeva : she CHOSE to come, noone forced her. I felt completed and ready to have her, although I LOVED being pregnant, and yes, at the beginning after she was born I missed my belly. But I feel in complete harmony now. I loved my belly at the end, yet I am happy to have the "belly tenant" in my arms now. I loved every minute of the last pregnancy days. I was ready for her, but it was a different "ready" comparing to the ones I heard before. I wasn't desperate for her to be out, because I hated being pregnant. No. I was ready for her because I loved her. I was ready to see her, yet I was also ready to wait as long as I needed for her to come. It always made me smile when people would tell me " oh , just hang in there, she is going to come, she won't be in there forever". I knew that all alone , and not for a minute did I NEED to hear that, because I loved waiting for her to meet her when SHE wanted to meet me . That is when I knew I was "ready". And I think it made a huge difference. I gave up my control - I let her chose her own way, and in return she does not control me. We work together, in a loving , amazingly beautiful way. I love holding her. I love kissing her. I love changing her diapers, I love feeding her, I love looking at her, I love sleeping by her and waking up to feed her, I love every minute of every day. I love having other children and seeing them loving her. I love seeing them fight and then hug and kiss. As much work as a newborn can be , I LOVE it, it does not make me exausted. Yes, I get tired, but it is a good kind of tired. I am happy to be so, because I love the reason for it.
Yeva truly changed my life. Our life. She brought us closer to God then we've ever been. She brought us close to wonderful people that we can truly call friends. Real friends. The ones that will love you the true way, the ones that will tell you bluntly if you are wrong, the ones that will laugh with you, and help you when you need help. The ones that will not judge you , no matter how messed up or perfect you are. The ones that will love and take you for what you are, just like Christ loves us. Gosh, we are so grateful. Yeva brought us to the place, where we truly were able to connect to DIvine, and for the first time understand what it really means. I with for everyone to experience this place. We both view church completely different. It is great - don't get me wrong - but you really see the truth that is in the gospel, NOT in the people. The truth that is there in every religion. The truth that makes us all even . There is no difference whether one is Catholic, Lutheran, Baptist, Orthodox, or whatever, I believe. We believe. God loves us all, and for as long as we do our best, and WANT to stay close to Him, we will never be on the wrong path. It just is not possible. There is so much more that we see and understand. Scriptures open up beautifully. I see religion and faith as two completely different things now. I've met people of the same religion that we are , and we have nothing in common, and I met people of different religions and we have absolutely the same FAITH. Faith is what unites us all. Faith is what lays true in every religion. Faith is what opens our eyes. Faith is what makes miracles come true.
I don't know how long it would take us, if ever, to reach this place of harmony and understanding if I didn't HAVE TO start searching for more then just physical solutions while I was pregnant with Yeva.
I learned that the "pre-set" truths are lies. I learned that it is impossible to teach one spirituality, unless one is looking for it I learned that there is no right or wrong for as long as it comes from God. I learned , and loved, that everyone is wonderful and beautiful. I learned and truly feel that God loves us. Loves us all - a druggie, a drunkie, a perfect priest , everyone and anyone. He is there to help us. Always.I learned that even the most perfect person has issues that they are working on. I am still amazed at the fact that the people that I see as most loving , most kind and most spiritual do not see themselves as such, and keep working on their stuff to be better. It amazes me. And teaches me the true meaning of being Christlike. And I don't know if I would be there, if WE would be there, if it was not for Yeva leading me on this path. Thank you, my little sweet baby. Thank you for teaching me that there is no right or wrong in this life for as long as one does his/her best at what s/he knows is right.
It is funny, but even breastfeeding is different with Yeva. She does NOTHING of traditional "wide open mouth", "touch the cheek" , etc approach. She takes in the breast when she wants to - does not matter how much you touch her cheek, chin or nose, and she DOES NOT open her mouth wide , like the babies are "supposed to", YET i didn't have a sore nipple for a minute, she takes in plenty of tissue, and obviously is growing more then good. Here goes another cliche down in pieces.
I am enjoying every minute of this new way of learning and living. I am loving every moment of motherhood, now truly experiencing all of it. I am excited to go back to work when the time is right, but for now, this first few weeks , I am loving just being what I am meant to be, doing what I was intended to do : a mother, giving love and cherishing time with my children, giving them all they need for a happy life, just like our Heavenly Mother did before we came here. This is my time now.

PS Happy Anniversary to us TODAY!


  1. Ah Olya, I loved reading about this. I am so happy for how happy you are right now. I can see how in love you are with your baby by your words you write.

    All the things you expressed for your newborn is how I have felt for Preston. Even though I did have a hospital birth (a Csection even), I have had the most wonderful experience being his mother so far. I don't think you need to have an all-natural birth to feel the feelings you describe, but I do understand how medical intervention prevents so many women from the opportunity to feel this way.

    I suppose I am lucky. Well, not really lucky, but it is just that my pregnancy was very very hard for me. So even though the birth was still not easy, everything AFTER was just heaven for me. Just like you, I still to this day wake up before Preston wakes up to feed. There has only been one time when I slept through him crying during the night and it was because I had stayed up too late doing a project and was over-tired.

    I also love everything from changing him, to holding him...all the things that people complain about I embrace and feel it an honor to do.

    I think for women who had awful births, it really does effect them. But for me, it was just that I had experienced 9 months of the Csection is something I just lump together as part of the awful pregnancy. Yet at the same time, his birth was still so special to me that I don't hate the Csection. I remember laying there on the table after they pulled him out and I heard his little cry and Will looking over at him and telling methat he had a full head of red hair. I was crying and so happy and just so relieved that I had a healthy baby. The surgery didn't matter to me.

    But now, as I learn more about other ways of birthing, the next time I do this I hope to do a more natural approach if my body lets me. I may have to have another Csection but I will try my best to not. But even if I end up with one, I hope it will be as positive of an experience as mine was with Preston.

    For days, weeks, and even months after Preston was born I was on a high because I felt so good. I wasn't pregnant anymore. Everyday I looked forward to,and every moment with Preston was and is a joy for me. Motherhood has never been a burden for me. I really think it was God's way of blessing me after going through a hard pregnancy. (for anyone reading this and didn't know my prego story, I had 4 dislocated ribs during the pregnancy that hurt all the time, extreme exoskelotal pains in my hips and just walking was hard sometimes, excessive weightgain due to the pain in activity...and in the end I had to be induced due to a level 5 amniotic fluid level and they were concerned for the baby).

    Anyway, I loved your post. I felt everything you read because I KNOW how you feel. At least the parts about how you feel about your little one (not about the birth) :)

    I am on vacation right now so if you write back I probably won't write back right away....I am borrowing a computer.

  2. Merry Christmas, Olya! Hope it was wonderful. :o)

  3. Thank you for sharing this, Olya! It is a beautiful testimony of how births and babies should be. I have been thinking of homebirths for years and years and think our next one should be at home. (NOT making an announcent--I'm not pregnant yet:) I am just so thrilled that you have found this wonderful peace and joy in being a mother. It brought tears to my eyes. And it helps me to stand up for natural births when I know others that have too. Thank you! And for taking Yeva to bed with you--isn't it SO MUCH BETTER?!

  4. Olya,

    Sorry I've been MIA lately. Congratulations on the (awesome) birth of Yeva! She is absolutely gorgeous...guess she gets that from her mama. ;)

    I loved loved reading about your birth story. It took me back to Kara's birth and how wonderful it drugs, no issues. After reading your birth story, I think I might have to look into home births more...just in case we decide to have one more. It's something that is still up in the air...

    Thank you for sharing this joyful time your life. Your family is beautiful and you always bring such inspiration to me.

    Hope you post more pics of the kiddies soon...I'd love to see all three again. :)

    Take care and I hope to chat soon!

    Bobbi :)

  5. Congratulations! Your new daughter is beautiful. Thanks for sharing your experience. I hope mine, when the time comes in a few months, is as special.


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