Arcadia's Unplanned Unassisted Birth (Part I)

The very first birth story in our Delmarva Community Birth Stories series comes from one of our own doulas, Elisha.  Today marks the fifth anniversary of her first labor beginning.  We think it's so special to be able to celebrate her labor and birth with our community on this day, the day before his fifth birthday.

Five years ago, very early in the morning I stirred from sleep and automatically placed Taylor's hand on my belly for the warmth to sooth my abdomen; stirring more from this action I realized it had been months since I had last done this (something I would do when experiencing menstrual cramps) I then realized I was in labor.

The excitement and Oh my Goodness this is REAL set in; there was still so much to do! I thought I had at least four more days if not more.... I got up and began washing baby blankets that for some reason had been left till now, and now I had to wash them by hand because we didn't have a washer or dryer at this time. Hanging them out to dry with rain in the forecast, but sun for now was a relief.

The morning set in and the contractions were still far enough apart to continue our day as planned. We got ready for our last trip to Dover, Delaware to see our midwife. We informed our midwife that I was in labor, she felt the contractions and informed me that this could last a week or so... I knew that would not be the case, tomorrow felt like the day we would meet our little baby.

We then headed home with a few stops planned first, I still needed nursing bras; so much to do before baby Arcadia arrives! Now we must race home before the rain. 

Getting home just as the sprinkles began to fall, grabbing blankets (which had dried perfectly). Then I ran around outside picking basil, the rain dripping down my face was refreshing and exhilarating! I needed to make one last batch of pre-baby pesto to freeze!

Food processor buzzing; Taylor painting in the living room with yellow non toxic clay paint (yes we saved this for the last minute too), but hey my belly cast had been done last week!

Everything was coming together now; pesto in the freezer and now I'm painting too. Now at a point in labor where I have to stop and focus a little more, I don't want to smudge the paint!

Everything is ready, now time to relax, all snuggled in our newly painted living room on our couch with a yummy bowl of fresh pesto pasta all with a great Netflix find playing! The perfect end of a perfect day. The contractions have been steadily increasing all day, it feels so exciting and unreal! Taylor falls asleep on the couch, I decide to head to bed and try to sleep.

I sleep with slight dream-like stirring during contractions (which seem close together), but I continue sleeping knowing I need all the sleep I can manage to snag. At some point Taylor comes to bed, the contractions continue. This has been the most perfect day, filled with the most perfect distractions.

*Birth story to be continued tomorrow, October 12, on Arcadia's fifth birthday*

If you're living on the Eastern Shore and would like to share your birth story with our community, please email me at