Caroline's Birth Story

February 10, 2017 in Manhattan, KS

Every baby is a miracle simply by virtue of their existence. There is truly nothing more awe inspiring nor miraculous in this world than the creation and birth of an entirely separate human being, brought about by the tiniest of particles and created and formed completely sight unseen.

So, of course I’m going to tell you that our baby is nothing short of a miracle….100 times over. Baby Caroline Elizabeth Koeppen was born when I was 40 years old and while my husband was deployed to a war zone. She was a surprise pregnancy – we had gone through two miscarriages in the previous year and given my history with infertility, I wasn’t hopeful we’d be able to carry a baby to term. Caroline is my third baby, conceived without any intervention, medical or otherwise, although I did rely on acupuncture in the months prior to her conception, as that treatment resulted in me being able to conceive my two older children.

Everything about lil miss Caroline is God’s work – the pregnancy was uneventful and perfectly healthy, she arrived at 39 weeks despite my previous pregnancies not lasting more than 32.5 and 35.5 weeks, her Daddy got to participate in her being born via Facetime from halfway around the world, and her birth was the most peaceful and beautiful thing I think I’ve ever done. And, at 2 weeks old, she is already sleeping mostly through the night – if that isn’t miraculous, I don’t know what is.

Labor started at 11:37 pm on February 9th – contractions were every 5 minutes through the night. I had a snack, finished packing my suitcase, and chatted with both my husband and friends and family. The pain was manageable and I was excited. At 7ish in the morning, the pain became intense and required me to concentrate and go inward to manage, so Jonna and I headed to the hospital. After check-in procedures, I labored in the hot tub for a little over an hour and then lil miss decided to make her appearance at 10:42 am. I chose an unmedicated birth from the get-go; the support and strength I gathered from those around me made my decision easy and the experience exceedingly positive. My birth coach and friend, Jonna, was a pillar of quiet strength that gave me the confidence I needed to be strong throughout the pregnancy and birth without my husband by my side. We were fortunate, however, to be able to have my husband, Nick, present via Facetime for the labor and the birth of our beautiful girl. While he was not physically present, his voice calmed me and carried me through it all.

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