Shaina Kaleolani Franada joined us at 7:30 this morning February 23 2009
Sharon’s water broke at 1:45 a.m. She progressed very quickly under excellent coaching by Eli. By the time they got to the hospital she was in serious labor. At 6 a.m. she was 6 c.m. at 7 a.m she was complete!! Eli said “the most memorable thing was the GRUNT she let out when she was going to push!” Eli helped to catch her. She went to Sharon’s chest right away. Because the birth was so fast and the cord was wrapped around her body multiple times, her heart rate was dropping and the team wanted to cut her cord very rapidly so they did. But, when the nurse went to bring her to the breast, Sharon grabbed her and said No, let her do it herself. And Shaina turned her own head and latched on all by herself and has been doing it perfectly ever since!! She said to tell everyone it wasn’t as hard as she thought it would be and you all can totally do it too.
Because I know you will all ask, her name is Hebrew, Hawai’in, and Phillipine. It means “the beautiful voice of heaven.”
I just wanted to take time to tell you how much it meant to Sharon and I to actively take part in bringing Shaina into this world. It was our faith in Christ and the willingness to submit the outcome of this amazing experience to God, as well as the wonderful Bradley(R) method taught by Betsy and sharing class with all of you that totally got us through it. Seriously, we have all learned some incredible stuff and we felt compelled to share a bit of what it was like and what we both think best helps as you all get ready to welcome your little ones into your lives.
As the coach, I would have to say that the one thing that got me through was realizing that my wife and I had both committed to having a natural birth. Having fully understood that this, I felt it was my sole responsibility to keep my wife comfortable, encouraged and focused on the end which would result in a beautiful baby girl in our arms. I have to be honest and say that if I were to be tested on all the detailed characteristics of each stage of labor, I might not pass at this point. I did however, remember all the major clues to look for that would serve as the signposts to each stage of labor, thus clueing me in as to what to do.
The morning started of with a wet bed (bag of waters) and a bloody show. That was enough for me even in a groggy state to say, “here we go!” These things were preceded by what Sharon called “cramps” in that she was having contractions. I immediately began to time the contractions from that point on until the birth really. I stayed calm throughout it all realizing the fun would only begin after the contractions were less than 10 mins. apart. That knowledge and the game we played last week in class were pivotal in my ability being able to stay calm and asses everything Sharon was going through. All in all I’d say the thing I tried to do was to keep reminding her to breathe and also to relax. That “happy place” is a good thing to rehears for the big day. Coaches just keep her motivated and encouraged: “You’re doing a great job!”, “You can and are totally doing this!”, “We are almost there!”
In all honesty, Sharon is the one that made me look good as a coach because her birth as a result of what she did made it look so easy. Again, I felt like all I did was encourage her while she just made the whole thing happen. Having said that, I made sure to ask Sharon what the single most important piece of advice was to give all of you. She said that she would have to tell the moms to feel what your body is telling you and then respond accordingly – BREEEEEATHE…. She says, your body knows what to do, you just have to feel it and go with the flow, don’t fight it. We both have so much to say but hopefully this helps just that much more.
One last thing is, make sure your car is packed and ready to go like, today! Ask yourselves if you were to go into labor right now, do you have everything you need? Before going into the hospital (while in early labor), we spent a good 45 mins. packing the car up with more of our stuff. Not to say at all that we weren’t ready (Sharon is the Queen of packing and preparation). Its just you realize this is it and we wanted everything down to the particular brand of OJ and the specific blankets that would bring calm and relaxation for a most fulfilling experience at our birth place.
I wanted to send you this note of thanks, encouragement and our prayers that your experience will be as enjoyable and safe as ours. Words CAN NOT describe the joy and honor of bringing a life into this world. You are all amazing people and we thank you so much from the bottom of our hearts.