The baby formerly known as Spud

Brendan here. Spud has a great latch at the moment, so I have the honor of authoring this much awaited update.

Yesterday was an incredible day. Jessica's water broke at 4 A.M., and early labor contractions began immediately. We spent the morning laboring on the porch and in our living room, and headed off to the hospital a little before 2 P.M. At this point, Jessica's contractions were really intense and things seemed to be progressing quickly.

At the hospital
At the hospital.

Our midwife, Cindie, met us at the hospital and checked Jessica out. She was at 3cm; that news was disheartening to both of us, since Jessica had been working hard all morning. Cindie wisely reassured us that Jessica had been making great progress, and that (warning: the following is my math geek paraphrase) dilation is often a nonlinear function of time. Sure enough, she was right! Jessica labored from 3cm to 9cm in the tub, and it only took her 2 short-but-excruciating hours. She was incredible; I am so impressed by her stamina (both physical and mental) and her trust in the Lord.

Jessica transitioned in the tub; although the urge to push never really manifested, we moved her to the bed and she pushed even without the urge. True to her ballet roots, Jessica found a ridiculous, look-at-my-insane-flexibility-even-while-birthing position to be the most tolerable and productive. Pushing lasted for a while (approximately 1 hour and 30 minutes from the first time we saw the head until crowning), and Jessica was obviously exhausted from the intense labor she did in the tub. I must reiterate: this girl has endurance! Spud was an incredible trooper, too, maintaining an excellent heart rate throughout the day. On July 13, 2008, at 7:36 P.M., after nearly 16 hours of completely natural labor, Spud crowned and immediately flopped all the way out.

Birthing and acute angles.
Birthing and acute angles.

Now for the details you're actually interested in:

Ezra Wray Ribera weighed in at 8lbs, 3oz. Being 19.5" long, he seems more like his dad... at least in terms of birth statistics. However, he makes the smooshy Meador face with excellent form, so we're decidedly undecided about who he takes after more. He is incredibly active and alert, and is almost holding his own head up already. He's also nursing well, and he has a really sweet, gentle temperament.

Thank you all for your prayers. Praise the Lord for this wonderful child!

The whole family.
The whole family.

8lbs 3oz
8lbs 3oz, and such a good patient!

I love daddy!
I love my daddy!

What a day!
I love my mommy, too. What a day!

More pictures available on Flickr

Early Days

Nope, not yet