Miss the first part of her story? Hear about Elizabeth’s decision to choose natural here.
As I neared my last few days of pregnancy, I packed my bags (obviously including a separate bag just for my diffuser and oils) and stayed with my in-laws as they lived significantly closer to where I would be delivering (I forgot to mention we lived an hour and a half away from the birthing center… crazy I know haha).
When early labor began at 4 a.m. the day I was 39 weeks, I was so incredibly excited… well until it stopped at 11 a.m. and then started again at 3 a.m. the next night… and stopped again by 10:30 the next morning… and so on and so forth for three days. This is not uncommon, little did I know, and is called prodromal labor.
One thing you should know about labor, it happens most efficiently when the mom is the most relaxed. I was seemingly not setting myself up for success in that way — I was in someone else’s house, not sleeping well, and only kind of anxious about when labor was actually going to stay so I could call my mom and tell her to start the four hour trip down to be there for the birth. Throughout this whole time though, I was envisioning my perfect birth and applying Frank + Orange.
As you can guess I did eventually go into labor… and stayed in labor. At 8 p.m. on January 18th we were walking, and my contractions began again. Throughout that evening and night they grew in intensity and became consistent so around 4 a.m. we called the midwife and headed to the birthing center. Can you guess what the first thing I did was, when we got there? You better believe I found that diffuser, plugged it in and started diffusing ALL of the Frank + Orange.
I was so blessed that my sweet, sweet friends Laura and Ashley (who are oil gurus and nurses) were able to be there for me to slather me with oils that they knew I would need at different points and I will happily tell you about those if you want to know what they are and what we used them for. It was beautiful having them there because I didn’t have to ask for a single thing in the way of oils. They knew what I needed and jumped in.
Now let me be 100 percent transparent, oils did not make my birth painless. I did not transform into some superhero who could handle any amount of pain. But let me paint a picture for you. A group of people ordinary people laughing, singing, praying, crying out to the Lord. For sixteen hours, I worshiped in a way that I never had before and my relationship with every person in that room is better and deeper for it.
Each person I had invited to be with me was necessary and perfect. In those 16 hours of progress, struggle, despair, and triumph I needed to worship with each one of those people. What they helped me to do was focus, they helped me to quiet my mind, my doubt, and my fears. And you know what I did? I went back to that place. I allowed the smell of Frankincense + Orange to take me to my memory of my beautiful, perfect birth. Then it was time, after was had seemed like the fastest and slowest hours of my life. My body knew it was time.
Sometimes worship is hard work. It often requires more of us than we have to offer, so that the Lord can step in and show us that we are capable of nothing without Him. He made himself very apparent in these final moments. He calmed my spirit. He gave me strength I didn’t know I could possess. He gave me the birth I had been envisioning for myself for the last 9 months.
At 6:50 p.m. on January 19th after 16 hours of labor in the birthing center (22 hours total) I reached down and delivered my perfect baby boy. And I do mean delivered in every sense of the word, as in I’m his mom and I pushed him out, but also in that I delivered and caught my own baby. I will never forget hearing my midwife tell me to, “reach down and deliver my baby.” It was perfect. It was everything I thought I wanted and more. Even as I’m sitting here typing I am occasionally closing my eyes, cupping my hands over my nose and mouth, and breathing in the beautiful smell of my son, Bryce Samuel, my little Frankincense baby. I can breathe those oils in and am immediately transported to my beautiful 16 hours of worship.
Get to know Elizabeth better by reading her bio!