The Journey to meeting Baby Boo ~ Isaac Sebastian

2015 was a mixed bag. … I’ve only typed 5 words so far, and the mixed emotions from experiencing ‘the storm to the rainbow’ bubbles inside me, resting as a tingle in my nose and little droplets of water that wash over my eye balls.
In the January we were expecting a baby girl and by the December we’d given birth to a healthy baby boy. If you’ve stayed with us throughout our journey of loss, the story continues here with our Rainbow Baby.

It’s almost a year since we lost our baby girl, April Victoria Rose, 24 weeks into our pregnancy. I’ve been wondering where that time has gone, and then I look down at the cherub in my arms, who is now already a month old.
In the months and weeks leading up to losing April, God blessed me with many dreams of getting to know her and the subconscious knowledge of the journey we were about to embark on. These dreams became a significant part of our story and the connection we’d always have with her. And through this, our faith in God grew.
So before we even fell pregnant with our son, another dream became incredibly significant. A dream that I would hold onto until the day he was born. ‘It’s going to be alright this time’ – as I rubbed my very pregnant belly.

The Heather & Doug RecordsOver April’s due date in June, Doug and I trekked through China, with our Rainbow baby growing well at 10 weeks.
This was far from an easy trip though. Although wonderful to be away travelling and experiencing another culture, something Doug and I are very passionate about… this trip involved a huge amount of grief.  ‘We weren’t meant to be in China, we were meant to be home preparing for a brand new baby’. But we weren’t.
This was one of the most difficult parts of my grief, because although I desired our baby girl in our arms, we had another bundle of joy on the way which we were so incredibly excited and grateful for!
Upon returning to New Zealand, it became very clear to me what I wanted to achieve through the course of this pregnancy.
Harmony.
Counseling over a 5 month period helped me to grieve deeply and to achieve my goal in bringing my two babies into harmony with one another. And the birth would be a huge part of that journey.

The great wall of china25 weeks along…

magnolia tree32 weeks

maternity photos33 weeks

maternity photos34 weeks {Photo by Kim Hamblin Photography}

kim hamblin photography35 weeks

pregnancy shadow35 weeks {next two photos by our amazing friend Kimberley Cheyne Photography}
(And her beautifully written blog about our story: Heather, Doug & Isaac ~ Maternity/Lifestyle)

kimberley cheyne photography
kimberley cheyne photography
36 weeks, last road trip pregnant.

lupins
…and what a view we had!

queenstownHarmony became incredibly important for me during the course of my pregnancy and our birth. Fear is a sneaky emotion that can consume you if you look away for even a second. I decided Harmony would replace fear and it became a state of healing. When it came to my birth with our son, fear had NO place!
My first experience of birth was a horrible heartbreaking one. I was induced to give birth to our baby who had died 5 days prior and it all happened sooo fast. I hyperventilated beyond control as the emotion of the event took over my body. *I couldn’t believe it was my reality*. These experiences leave an imprint with us, memories of a haunting nature. But I refused to let this event impact my life in any negative way, because I always want to believe there is beauty in every circumstance.

Do I wish that both my babies could exist with each other on earth? Of course. But can they exist together side by side in my heart? ALWAYS!
I spent 9 months so incredibly EXCITED for birth! Ready for an experience of the most beautiful and calming nature. I couldn’t wait to give myself, my husband and my baby, the sweetest journey into Parenthood and into Life. All while inviting April into the experience… This is how Harmony took shape for me.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Baby Boo~ 37 weeks, 6 days. Also known as Christmas Day!

Isaac's Birth StoryI woke with the familiar feeling of contractions. I started to giggle “Christmas Day baby eh, God?”
1 and a half to 2 minutes between every 30 second contraction… ‘Hmmmm, this is rather regular!’ I sat in our lounge on Christmas morning relaxing as Doug had a nice sleep in. Contraction timer consistently going, I gently woke Doug simply to tell him that we might have a baby today, but to go back to sleep because it was no time soon. I wasn’t absolutely certain, so we went about our day as planned until further notice.
A lot of our family were out of town, so a nice relaxed lunch with our cousins were on the cards. We decided not to scream from the roof tops that I was in labour. But they cottoned on pretty quickly with contraction timer in hand and silence from me every 2 minutes. “Just by the way, I think I’m in labour” … “Yiiip, we gathered that!!!”.
I don’t particularly remember opening presents, and the taste of lunch is a distant memory. Soon enough I knew it was time to call my midwife and get things going. Active Labour had commenced…

So many people think ‘What rotten luck to have a baby on Christmas’… We think it’s AWESOME, because what an honour to share a birthday with the man and reason behind Christmas!! … Boom! Let’s go have this baby!!! :)

Birth Photography, Heather and DougIt was suuuch a beautiful day, we got home and parked up under a tree in our backyard with a beautiful breeze streaming through. I had my team ready, for the day I’d been so excited for! My midwife, my husband and one of my best friends! I was in a state of extreme joy!

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug

Birth Photography, Heather and DougMy tattoo reads in Italian. “For the people I love, and the colour in this world!”. We were beyond ready to meet our Rainbow baby!

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug

Birth Photography, Heather and DougI sent my midwife away for all of… 7 minutes. “I can go if you want, I’m not that far away, if you need me even if it’s in 5 minutes or 3 hours… just call”. 7 minutes later… “Okaaay, we’ll meet you at the hospital!” If it’s your first child, general questions tend to be “When do you know you need to go to the hospital?” … Believe me, your intuition takes over.. and you. just. KNOW!

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug

Birth Photography, Heather and DougIt’s a special thing to have an amazing team of trust surround you throughout one of the most significant times in your life. With a midwife who was calm and soothing and smiled whenever I looked up, a husband who knows me so well, he stroked, held me and repeated beautiful words of affirmation constantly. And not to mention the friend who will hold your hand no matter how tight the grip gets. Who looks on with compassion and rides the contraction wave with you. I felt so safe and peaceful!

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug

Birth Photography, Heather and DougMy infinity ‘April’ bracelet.

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug

Birth Photography, Heather and DougI hadn’t set my heart on any particular kind of birth, we were pretty happy to go with the flow. The only thing I wanted of myself, was to breathe deeply and keep positive affirmations rolling through my head the entire time. … The birthing pool was an option, and it called my name pretty quickly! This is where I spent the next 3 wrinkly hours before Baby Boo entered the world!

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug

Birth Photography, Heather and DougI know the water doesn’t work for everyone, but for me, the weightlessness during each contraction was incredibly soothing. I was able to push up on my arms through the intensity and float back down between each interval.
Natural thoughts between my positive affirmations roamed my mind like “How the heeeeck do people have more than one baby??” Haha… but I batted them away pretty quickly and continued to fill my mind with “I can’t wait to meet you baby Boo”, “I can do this!”, “This is just one day, he will be in my arms tomorrow”, “I was made to do this”, “I get to meet my baby soooo soon”.

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug I never once felt out of control, only calm. I never let Fear get the best of me! This is the experience I’d been wanting, hoping and praying for!

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug
One of my favourite photos. This embodies the trust I felt.

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug
I remember wanting to touch and feel my belly as much as possible. Being very conscious that although I’d been pregnant for 17 months and I was sooooo ready to meet my wee baby… that I also really truly enjoyed every bit of my pregnancy with Baby Boo, and I wouldn’t be pregnant again for a wee while. I rubbed and adored that belly as much as I could!

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug

Birth Photography, Heather and DougBirth Photography, Heather and Doug

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug
4 hours into active labour and not a single examination of dilation, I open my eyes and look to my midwife for some sort of progress report. All she said was “You’re doing sooo well”.

Isaac's Birth Story
The sun set on a gorgeous Christmas Day… and not long after, my waters broke and my midwife was surprised to see the head had been birthed. Doug skipped back to me with exhilaration as he’d just witnessed something miraculous. We were about to meet our Baby Boo.

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug
Isaac Sebastian Richardson graced Doug and I with his incredibly peaceful and calming presence at 9.55pm on December 25th, weighing a gentle 6 pounds, 6 ounces!
Joy, excitement, relief, contentment and happiness are just a few ways to describe how we felt in this moment. Our dreams had come true!

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug
“Hello beautiful, Merry Christmas! You’ll always have your birthday off” are the first words that I breathed to him.

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug

Birth Photography, Heather and DougIt’s like no other feeling in the world, holding your baby to your chest for the first time, feeling his warm skin and heart beating against yours.

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug

Isaac's Birth Story

Isaac's Birth StoryDad’s first skin to skin time!

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug
These first moments are so precious… and we may or may not have a photo or 2!! lol

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug

Birth Photography, Heather and Doug

Birth Photography, Heather and DougA fun wee project shot in our progressive baby room with rainbow beads for our rainbow baby. This kept me positive seeing the change every 2 weeks and the wonderful growth that took place!

40 weeks of pregnancy

Birth Photography, Heather and DougAt home in our comforts, we thank our buddy Kelly Shakespeare Photography for this wee natural gem!

Birth Photography, Heather and DougAfter having a gorgeous maternity shoot with Kim, we were soooo excited to be back for the newborn shoot! These next 3 photos are by our talented friend Kim Hamblin Photography! Thank you for the heavenly experience!

kim hamblin photography9 days new.

kim hamblin photography

kim hamblin photography
You can’t help but study every feature, it all changes soooo fast!

baby details
And call me a mean Mummy, but I adoooore his scrunchy cry face! It makes me smile so much because there isn’t a thing about him that I don’t love. Every dimple, frown, squeak and groan. All of it, because he is ours, alllll ours!!

baby details3 weeks new

Isaac Sebastian

Isaac Sebastian

If you think for one minute we are doing any work… Think again… we are far too busy staring adoringly at our little human, studying every feature and soaking in each squeak, squirm and tummy explosion! ;-)

Isaac's Birth Story5 weeks

Isaac's Birth StoryAnd the moments that stop our hearts for a split second and remind us why we are here on earth. … We are here to Love!

Isaac Sebastian
So that’s us…
2015 showed us how much strength we didn’t know we had, how deep our faith goes and how much love is all around us. (We’ve been shown SO much throughout this time and we’re so grateful).
2016 holds new things for us, we’re a happy wee family who will keep loving, laughing, striving, photographing and colouring this world in the best ways we know how.

The Heather & Doug Records
Isaac will grow up knowing of his sister in Heaven and the love we have for her. And that he is our very special gift from God (we tell him every day). And if he knows nothing in life (impossible), he will know what love truly is. We will make sure of that!

Thank you for all your words of love and encouragement, and thank you for being on this journey with us..

With massive love, Heather, Doug & Isaac xoxoxo

  • Rebecca Balmer

    I can’t even handle this! Tears. .. so much love for you three xxx

  • Kristina Dodd

    Your journey through the tough and amazing times showed your strength, passion, determination, happiness, sadness and most of all Love for your family. I have cried for you both happy and sad. May 2016 be an amazing adventure for you all xxx

  • Janet McGuinness

    Thank you my beautiful cousins, for such a heartfelt sharing of your story. Many a parent who has walked the same steps would find great comfort in your story and your message. You are going to make truly wonderful parents and Isaac is very blessed to have been given to you. In return I know he and April will give you many blessings and moments of happiness in your lives. God is wonderful, he creates perfect beautiful babies and gives them to us to show us the wonder of the world and how to love unconditionally. Welcome to our world Isaac, you gorgeous little angel. Love you all. Xx

  • Charlotte Sowman

    Beautiful guys, bought a tear to my eyes :)



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