Birthing Stories – Happy Father’s Day Edition: The story of Emmy Kuti!

In celebration of Father’s day I decided to share a birthing story from a dad.  Often times we focus on the moms during the birth and dad are just as invested.  The funny thing is some of their experiences are completely different from the experience of the mom but just as intense and amazing.  Here is one man’s story of welcoming his beautiful baby girl into the world.

Kuti and Emmy!
Kuti and Emmy!

When I met my Wife at the Kentucky Derby, kids were the last thing on my mind. This was because I was a mentor or Uncle to at least 20 folks, I didn’t want to even attempt fatherhood without first being a husband, and more significantly I was pretty sold on (and very ok with) the notion that I likely wasn’t getting married. I had just recently gotten out of a committed but toxic relationship and figured that It would take a very special person with a laser specific set of qualities for me to even contemplate even trying it again…not because I was such a catch, but because I was a lot to deal with…I needed to work on ME.

However, God & circumstances conspired and wouldn’t allow my life to go a step further without El being a part of it. Judging from the way I dealt with her from Day 2, my subconscious agreed before my head or heart even knew what was happening. Every byproduct of her inclusion in my life has been superlative, but even that word doesn’t describe how amazing her gift to me of Fatherhood has been.

By most standards, especially my Mum’s, I started down this road late: I was 41 when El got pregnant, and even that was at least 6 months ahead of plans (guess I was “healthier” than I knew). Was our pregnancy planned or a surprise? Both. Sort of…Our plan was to conceive in Greece during our vacation six months later in the year, but as SOON as we got off birth control…man, blame it on the kale… We make plans, God laughs.

Our plan was also to go all natural with our birthing approach, and we chose hypnobirthing. Again, we make plans, God laughs because much of the hypnobirthing we practiced didn’t come in to play due to the fact that many natural techniques were thrown out of the window given some circumstances that started El’s labor process. However, hypnobirthing eased our collective minds about the birthing process and taught us BOTH how to physically and mentally relax on demand during times that we formerly perceived as duress; it also freed us to let our bodies do what they were naturally created to do. Hey, it brought my 8k time down, so that was an unexpected bonus!

A few days ahead of our planned due date, my Wife (El) was feeling uncharacteristically miserable; a precautionary late night visit to the doctor transformed into our delivery date, though WE were the last to know. We make plans, God…well, (you get it, now)… Doctors, we quickly discovered, refer to their patients’ birth plans as “birth preferences.” So while our PREFERENCE was to go all natural, none of us (our wonderful doctors included) knew that we had nearly a 10 pounder cooking…and contrary to popular belief & her prototypical God-blessed physique, El wasn’t built for all THAT action! So, some 24 long hours later, we agreed to the c-section that I’m now sure the doctors wanted us to have half a day prior. Plans, shmamms…

Even though I’m sure my Wife wouldn’t want to relive 24 hours of labor, I don’t think we would change a thing about that pregnancy. For the vast majority of it, she was relatively symptom free, and the uncertainty of the entire process taught us a ton about each other. Most notably:

El Kuti is the most POWERFUL woman I’ve ever witnessed, and we made an AWESOME baby.

I had to take care of BOTH of my women in the hospital day and night for the five days that followed & never felt more like a grown man, Husband and Father. I couldn’t have picked a better time nor a better person with which to take this journey. I’m loving EVERY minute of it! So glad God laughed at my plans…

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