By Teresa Howell
We would like to introduce our beautiful baby girl to this world. Her name is Honour Zoria Rain Howell-Smith. We love the name Honour and her two middle names are for our mothers: Zoria- which is my mom’s middle name and it means star in Ukrainian and Rain- which is short for Lorraine- Patrick’s mom. Bravery is very excited to have a little sister- he often would tell me that there was a sister in my belly- but I had no clue!
My labour began on Thursday August 18th. Thankfully, my sister Marcy was here and she cooked us dinner and then took Bravery to the park for a couple hours. By 8pm it was getting intense, so we called the midwives and our support team. We were blessed with a room full of women: My mom, Sabrena, Keisha, Brandy, Angela, Bonni, Alannah and Melody. And of course Patrick and Bravery were here. I felt cared for, loved, and very well supported. As it became more and more intense, I needed a lot of physical support so it was good to have a lot of women around. By 12:40am, my water broke and I was allowed to get into the birthing tub that was set up in the middle of the living room. After some pretty intense, hard work, thankfully by 1:30am Honour entered the world, weighing 9lbs 4ozs and being 21 inches long. Bravery was able to stay awake and be a part of the process. There were times when he thought I was “too loud” but he was able to witness his sister’s birth and be a good helper too.
Although Honour had great vital signs (heart rate, breathing, skin color, etc) when she was born, she did not want to wake up. She wouldn’t cry, she appeared to be asleep, and she didn’t display any of the usual motor reflexes that newborns demonstrate (she was basically limp). The midwives had never seen anything like it before- and to be honest- it was quite scary. But because she was breathing and her heart was good, we did not have to panic. She needed suction and oxygen and a lot of stimulation and she slowly began to awaken. Her muscle returned to normal but her right arm was only at about 50%. We consulted with a pediatric specialist-who examined her and stated that she is going to be fine. It was likely that some nerves were pulled in that arm and we just have to make sure she uses her muscles. It sounds simple but it still is a bit overwhelming.
I am truly GRATEFUL for life and for being blessed with 2 children. I am very thankful for all the support and love of everyone around us and I am trying to appreciate being in the moment. Every moment is precious.
Check out how cute she is!