This Beautiful En Caul Water Birth Took Our Breath Away


Jenna shares the birth story of her son Ellis, who was still in his amniotic sac as he was born.

From the very beginning, I knew your story was going to be different. Your motions and even your hiccups changed as you grew inside of me, and your shape in my tummy also changed. Your birth story started weeks before your arrival and took our breath away.

At 36weeks pregnant we discovered you were frank breech. You were my fourth baby, my first planned birth centre birth and you were breech… I was devastated. We persuaded you to wriggle into the proper posture for three weeks. We gradually came to terms with the fact that you would be born through C-section. But the morning of your scheduled birth you surprised us all again by flipping! Practically dancing out of the hospital we went back home unsure of what would happen next.

You kept me waiting longer than your brothers did, but finally, at 39.5 weeks, I went into labour. While I was in the birthing center, your dad went to pick up your older brother from school while I contacted the birth photographer. He went, and as the light contractions became more frequent and intense, I cheerfully conversed with the midwife and doula. To slow down the situation and attempt to ease some of the discomfort, I entered the bathtub.

Your photographer arrived and the contractions picked up speed and intensity. It almost seems as though you knew she was coming to record your big moment! I told myself to believe that my body knew what to do as I relaxed into the contractions. The pressure to push arrived so quickly; I felt the need to stand and as I did I gave a push and heard my midwife exclaim that you were being born, with your water still intact!

One more push and you slid into the midwife’s hands and in that moment, she cradled you, your waters broke and you truly entered into this world.

As I brought you up to my chest and slid back down into the warm bath waters with you I ruminated on the journey you and I had experienced over the last few weeks.

We had gone through a roller coaster of emotions that had ended in the most intensely beautiful and powerful birth I had ever experienced.