Phew!!!! I arrived home just an hour ago and after re-telling the whole event to Stuart, and eating (it had been awhile!) and praising God again and again.......... I am updating for you!
Cathy phoned this afternoon to let me know labour had kicked in again and to think about arranging care for my children. An hour later she phoned back to say it really really had kicked in, full force, and could I please come right over?!! When I arrived I could see that active labour had truly started - and her body was working fast and well. As we gathered ourselves together and slowly made our way to the car, I actually wondered if she may already be going through transition as many of the signs were there. We prayed for wisdom and Cathy felt she still had time and the desire to transfer to the hospital. So we did, and the transition went well. I think Gary may have sped a bit, but hey!
Her labour continued beautifully and just 2 hours after we got to the hospital, baby Laura was born!!! She is 10 lbs 1, chubby, and absolutely perfect. Cathy was a champion and 'breathed out' her big baby so well! I was so proud of her.
I tell you what - in some ways I think it's harder to support someone through labour than to be the labouring woman. I don't know why, but I really felt that tonight! I have a new respect for Stuart and the for the women who have supported me through my labours! Maybe it's the feeling of helplessness, or maybe the lack of the 'good hormones' like the mother gets that give her the endorphins; or maybe it's watching someone you love go through all that. Anyway, I found it to be a challenge but SUCH a privilege and honour as well. It was actually hard to leave them and come home. :(
Sweet little Laura didn't breathe spontaneously - just like William. As the minutes passed I watched and stroked her and prayed prayed prayed, as I never have before over her tiny body. Just as Cathy did for me, I was able to do for her. I don't usually feel comfortable praying out loud when I'm around people I don't know, but tonight it just happened- in front of a midwife and 2 pediatric doctors-, and just as with William's birth, I felt the incredible presence of God right there. I literally felt him fill Laura's lungs with air. Just as Cathy felt with William. I don't understand that but feel in awe of it. The ways in which God's fingerprints were all over this birth have been astonishing. Why do we doubt? He IS sovereign!! He IS in control!! All of the little things Cathy had hoped for were fulfilled (and there were many many details to be orchestrated), and the challenges faced were handled because of His sufficient and amazing grace and love.
Thank you God for this baby!! May she grow up healthy and happy in this precious family you have given her. :)
And thank you Cathy and Gary for the honour of supporting you on this journey. You guys are so special and I love you very much!