Posted by on Jan 20, 2015 in Birth Photos, Birth Stories | 2 comments

Here is the story as written by one of our beautiful mommies.

Live Stream Birth Story

“Our 3rd child, Sawyer, was actually as huge surprise to our family(insert lame joke about us not realizing how that happens here). November 2013, on a routine trip to the doctor, my husband and I discovered that we were 2-3 weeks pregnant. We gathered our wits about us and proceeded on our new journey to baby bliss yet again.
Our first pregnancy was routine under the care of a well liked ob/gyn and we had a typical hospital delivery, but the beauty we anticipated and hoped for in the experience was mired by hospital rules and procedures that led to a completely preventable week in the NICU. We did come home with a healthy baby girl, but were left with negative & tear-filled memories about the experience.
Upon our second pregnancy, we educated ourselves, considered all birth options (except maybe for the whole unassisted birth in nature deal), and decided on a homebirth with an experienced midwife team. We loved the process, the proactive care we received, and had a beautiful homebirth with a precious, happy beginning to the life of our 2nd daughter.
So for the third pregnancy, we made the call to our beloved midwives and began our birth journey together again. Prenatal visits were a bit more lively this time with 2 children in tow, but the care and accountability we received was great as usual. We followed the midwives guidelines of nutrition, exercise, and supplements eagerly in the hopes of another low risk birth experience.
With the creative announcement of this pregnancy, thanks honey,
and so many aware of our previous homebirth our friends were more curious than ever, some even asking if they could attend. (um…) Their curiosity and questions led to an odd idea from my husband, “Hey honey we should live-stream your birth”. After some soul searching and assurances from my husband that he could pull it off and keep it PG, I said “let’s do it’. He found a simple live-stream solution (the dropcam) and we starting making the plans. At the time we had no idea we’d end up with around 2000 watching.
The morning of Sawyer’s birth was an ordinary Friday. I met a friend at a local indoor playground and starting experience contractions that were 10 minutes apart. I was hopeful, and we continued playing, then came home around noon. I ate a light lunch then met with my midwives that afternoon for my weekly appointment. All vitals were fine and I headed back home. Contractions were now 7 minutes apart, but totally manageable- I could still talk and breathe thru them without any hesitation. Around 5pm my husband, Doran, was preparing to leave for the last night of a youth conference he produced- I begged him not to go- I was pretty sure I was in labor- I just didn’t know how long it would be until things really started moving. He assured me he was only 10 minutes away and I was to update him of my status every 15 minutes or so. The next hour got a bit tricky- I’d promised my daughters I would take them out to dinner on Friday night since daddy had been gone to the conference all week. They were begging for breakfast for dinner- so I loaded them in the truck and we headed to IHOP around 5:45. Contractions were now 5minutes apart and getting stronger. We sat down at the restaurant, ordered, ate quickly and left. We arrived back home around 6:30pm. Doran told me to do the things my midwife always suggests to be sure it’s active labor- so I did. 15 minutes later I’m sitting in a warm bath and I texted him he’d better head on home, it was imminent. He quickly handed over his headset and his duties for the night and sprinted for the door- everyone waving him on as they knew exactly where he was headed!
Doran started making the phone calls…photographer, midwives, family- and things quickly swung into motion. I got situated on my exercise ball and began working and moving with the contractions. My darling sister in law, Mary, arrived first, and began tending to my needs and helping with my girls while Doran got the camera and live-stream rolling. It was fun and laughing for the first hour or so, then the contractions were coming hard & heavy by 8:30/9pm. Sawyer was in a posterior position so my midwives had me lay on the bed and go thru 3 contractions on each side, trying to get him to flip. The contractions were indeed painful, but I stayed focused on the task at hand- knowing with each wave of pain he was moving down lower and closer to being in my arms. My precious 6 year old daughter Cate was by my side- she held my hand and stroked my arm. My strong and calm husband whispered into my ear words of affirmation and direction with each contraction to relax, breathe- His hot breath on my neck was calming as well as his hand holding the heating pad on my tail bone to help with the pain. He never left me and never stopped believing in me. I got into the birth pool around 10pm I guess- things are a bit fuzzy regarding the timeline by now. The warm water was the grandest thing ever, and watching Sawyer twist and turn in my belly was pretty grand as well.
He was trying to turn himself, but the urges to push soon came and boy was I ready to push him out! I knew I wanted to be in the optimum position, so I needed to do a perfect squat- which I knew could potentially open me up an additional 2cm. The stool I started with was too high, so I opted to squat on my own, with the help of my husband, he held me up and away we went. Pushing and pushing with all of my might. Finally Sawyer started making his way out, but was stopped in his tracks with the cord was wrapped twice around his neck. My midwives sprung into action and with the next push they had me hold my position, where they clamped and cut the cord and I was then able to freely push him out. We had hoped to cut the cord after it stopped beating, but are thankful that the midwives knew what to do and no trauma occurred to me or Sawyer. That silly boy was completely crooked coming out so he didn’t make it any easier on me, but nonetheless, it was a glorious experience to reach down and pull him up all by myself- a dream indeed. With great pride, exhaustion, and trembling arms, I held Sawyer up to my chest. He was here at 11:42pm!!!!
The next few hours were precious as we held him, nursed him, weighed and measured him-all here in our bedroom with our daughters & family by our side. My midwives checked vitals and every square inch of him, then they did the same to me to ensure we were healthy and on the mend. Our family put our daughters to bed, began to say their goodbyes, and headed home around 1am. Finally when it was just Doran, baby Sawyer, me, and the midwives, we spent the next few hours basking in the glory of the moment. My midwives assured we were fine, finally headed home around 4AM, leaving just the 3 of us to snuggle into bed, exhausted, but thankful for the miracle of birth the miraculous birthday of Doran “Sawyer” Woods. 07.25.14–7lbs9oz–21″long
Check out my Facebook Photo Gallery for pictures of those precious moments.” Emily Woods

Watch the PG version of the final 30 minutes of the birth


  1. 1-22-2015

    That’s so cool! My friend did this a while back. It was awesome.

  2. 7-23-2015

    Ha ha! I didn’t realize ur contractions were five min apart good thing he was in a funny position or Cate might have had to deliver him 😉

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