Family of Seven

Family Life

We’re a family of 7 now

A family of seven! I can hardly believe it!

Our family once was full of boys! Rocks, dump trucks, bike riding, dirt and lots of wrestling! I grew up with 3 brothers and no sisters and I’ve always got along really well with boys, so having all boys was no new thing to me!

After our first 2 sons were born, I really loved the dynamic of being a boy mom! We went on lots of adventures, spent many hours outside and would always stop to watch construction trucks or the garbage man anytime we saw them!

When I was pregnant with baby #3, I was not surprised to find out we were having another boy. So many people thought I should have been bummed I wasn’t having a girl, but I was truly so excited to add another boy. I loved being a boy mom and we already had all the boy things, so why not have another one!?

Baby #4 came along and allll the boys wanted a girl so badly! I tried to brace them for whatever the outcome would be, but they were right! We needed a girl and that’s what we were getting! We have all loved having a girl added to the mix. They continue to take such good care of her. The boys protect her, spoil her and every now and then get annoyed with her. But their friendship is the sweetest thing to see.

Well…pregnancy #5 comes along and all of us were getting our hopes up that it would be a girl. It just made sense at this point. And turns out, another girl was in store for us. We have looked forward to her birth in great anticipation.

Hilton Head Maternity Photo

Pregnancy and birth are such incredible experiences! It’s not easy, but it sure is miraculous! Every single time we welcome a new baby into our family, I am amazed by the miracle of it all. This time we got to experience having a home birth and if I had to do it over, I would have had a home birth for all of my babies!

Our little Rosalie came to us in the middle of a Sunday night at the end of January. We were putting the kids to bed when I started having contractions. It was around 9pm when the contractions started picking up and at 9:30, I decided to text our midwife. “Just a heads up that I’ve been starting to feel strong contractions tonight. It’s not anything consistent yet, but this is the first time I’m feeling contractions and not just crampy. No need to come over, but just wanted to keep you in the loop. I’ll watch things and give you a call or text if they become more consistent.” Her response was “Good. Go to bed! It will pick up”

Shortly after I sent her that message, I started timing contractions and walking the stairs to encourage them to come on faster and harder. Things felt pretty serious. At 10:19 I sent Colleen another text “Well…I started timing contractions. We’re at contractions coming every 3 minutes and lasting for about 30 seconds. (That’s what it’s been like for the past 45 minutes) Prooobably looking like active labor over here.” I knew Colleen could very well be asleep, so I had Ben give her a call a few minutes later at 10:37. She started gathering her things and called back at 10:54 to talk to me and hear how things were going.

I continued to walk stairs and laps in the house finding that anytime I stopped walking or started to have a conversation, things would slow down. So I tried to minimize conversations and kept those contractions coming! Contractions continued to be around 3 minutes apart, but lengthened to be about 45 seconds to 1 minute long.

Colleen arrived just before midnight. We had a brief conversation, she listened to baby’s heartbeat and showed me a position that Ben could help me be in to encourage baby to descend quicker. (It was pretty much him holding my belly from behind every time I contracted). Colleen and my mom then hung out in the living room while Ben and I had some time upstairs. I found I really disliked the position Colleen showed me (which was totally fine. I was very grateful that she was giving me options to pull from). Instead, I found I preferred to rest my forearms on the bathroom countertop every time I had a contraction.

Around 12:45, things really started getting intense and I thought I was headed into transition. Ben called up Colleen and my mom. Colleen checked me and I was dilated to a 7. This is usually go time for me. Once I’m to a 7, things happen very quickly! We moved into the bedroom where we had things prepped and I knelt next to the bed for the rest of the labor and delivery process.

About 10 minutes later, I started to feel pushy. During this pregnancy, I had looked a lot into physiological birth and fetal ejection reflex (FER) and I really wanted to create a space where I was allowing my body to birth the baby without coached pushing. FER is pretty much where the body expels the baby without needing to push. With each contraction, I would focus on calming my breathing while thinking the words “open” (breathe in) “and down” (breathe out) and then envisioning baby girl making her way through the birth canal.

A few minutes before our baby was born, Colleen had noticed baby’s heart rate was all over the place and informed Ben that there was a nuchal cord she would need to address when the head emerged.

Our beautiful baby girl was born at 1am on the dot! “Pushing” took about 5 minutes and it took 1 contraction for her full body to come out. And where I mostly relied on FER, I did push a little bit near the end because I was so ready for labor to be over and to hold my baby girl! Plus, I knew the sooner she came out, the quicker Colleen could get the cord off her neck. Baby girl was born en caul (still in the bag of water), which was an experience I had never had before. Ben fully caught the baby, Colleen pulled the sack off, grabbed the cord off her neck and passed her up to me.

The next 2 hours flew by and I was so happy to be in the comfort of my home with my mom and husband beside me.

Our home birth-just minutes after Rosalie was born

Ivy woke up at 2:30 and joined us for a little bit. Then Ben woke the rest of the kids up at 2:45 to meet their new sister. Bentley, our oldest son, cut the umbilical cord and they all got to be a part of watching Colleen weigh, measure and check on baby sister. (Well all except for Beckham, our 2nd son. He thought we were crazy for being up in the middle of the night and opted to go back to bed! haha!)

First photo as a family of 7- sleeping masks and everything!
Bentley cutting the umbilical cord
Weighing in at 6 lbs 10 oz and 20 inches long
Meeting baby sister for the first time

Things started winding down, the kids went back to bed, Colleen finished up and went home around 4am (bless her for being up all night taking such great care of us!). We hadn’t quite decided on a name yet, so Ben and I stayed up a few minutes later to finalize a name choice and we concluded on Rosalie Marie. Rosalie as a nature name that pairs well with her older sister, Ivy. And Marie, after my own middle name.

And there you have it! Rosalie’s birth story. What a miracle it is and how blessed I feel to be this little girl’s momma. It is a an experience I do not take for granted. That little nose, those perfect little lips, her tiny little bum…all of it is such a miracle! And we are so grateful to have another little one a part of our family.

Our little Rosalie Marie at 1 day old

March 17, 2023




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