The lovely Emily Lego, Lilly (almost 4) and Calvin (13 months)
Emily is a previous project participant, you can view her initial photo and story here.
Emily describes her motherhood journey as magical and special yet fairly ordinary. Both Lilly and Calvin were conceived within a few months of going off birth control. She was sick and nauseous with both of them while pregnant and took Zofran until the nausea gradually wore off around 20 weeks. Still she loved being pregnant and felt so empowered.
Emily and her husband took Lamaze birthing classes before Lilly was born and she says this is when she began to understand birth and what her body was going to do. She began believing in herself and understood that she was in charge of her care. Emily chose to forgo an epidural so her movement wasn't limited during labor. She labored for 13 hours and pushed in a seated position on the toilet, moving to the bed when it was time for Lilly to come earth side. Emily says that her midwife and the nurses were angels during Lilly's birth. They not only supported her but her husband, as well. Lilly was born covered in vernix and put right to her chest. They were able to delay the cord cutting for a few minutes as she birthed the placenta. Lilly breastfed right away and continued until she self-weaned at 9 months.
Emily felt beat up after birth because she had pushed for so long, but also incredibly strong. She says, she remembers being moved from the labor and delivery room to the postpartum room, feeling like she could do anything.
Emily knew she wanted to have another child, and just when they thought they could wait a little longer, found out she was pregnant again. They were thrilled to have a little boy and pregnancy went very smooth, other than having a toddler to keep up with. She felt even more empowered and truly owned her pregnancy and body. Calvin was born 5 days after his due date and she says she thought she was going to be pregnant forever. Labor with Calvin was very fast and at one point she worried they wouldn't make it to the hospital. Emily felt like she had to push shortly after they arrived at the hospital but there was no one else there but her mom. She recalls looking at her Mom and asking, "Where is everyone? I have to push this baby out!" Her waters broke and meconium was present but things moved very quickly. Calvin was out in 5 minutes and just three pushes. Because of the meconium he was taken right away but thankfully he hadn't ingested any and she was able to hold him shortly after her placenta was delivered and she was stitched up. Breastfeeding went well again until Emily chose to wean at 1 year.
"Both of my children were born on a day with a huge rain storm. The storms cleared of course, and revealed a beautiful sky. I feel like this is such a metaphor for motherhood. There are storms that are hard and scary, but they do clear. There are more happy times than there are sad. There are more funny times than there are frustrating."