She texted me a little after midnight. I didn’t see it until I woke up restless around 4 am. My heart raced, I texted back. “Do you need me yet?” No, it was ok. She would call when the contractions were more consistent and they were ready to go to the birth center. She called at 6. They were headed in. I know I took a shower, got dressed and rushed out the door but it’s all fuzzy, blurred steps with my poor husband trying to hand me things I may need throughout the day as I rushed to the car. I was only focused on getting there because she may need me. I was an hour away but I beat them there. I watched her face as she got out of the car. I could tell we had a while yet. I had been here a least a hundred times before with other mama’s anxiously awaiting their babies. This mama was different. She was my baby. We walked into the calm environment of the birth room, turned on her music and got everything set up the way she wanted. I watched as her and Khyre would turn toward each other and sway contraction after contraction. I told myself I would just observe until she needed me. She was amazing. I watched her very determined countenance hour after hour. Walking outside, rocking in the chair, laying on the birthing ball. Khyre right next to her with ice chips or a back rub. I was so proud of them. They were doing great. She didn’t need me. Tracey and Lyndsey came in and helped relieve Khyre for a bit. It was really beautiful this dance between support and pain that happened throughout the day. Then her demeanor started to change. The intensity of her pain increased. Maurice came in and they swayed together. I could tell how hard it was for him to see her hurt. We all moved with increased anticipation when she said it was time to get in the water. I was dreading this part. I was worried for her. Quietly I began praying for her strength and resilience. “Please take care for her and my grandbaby.” She was so strong. Hours went by. Khyre right in her face encouraging her and holding the cool wash clothe to her head. Then the moment came when she turned toward me. “Mom, I can’t do this. How much longer? Is there something else I can take for pain?” She grabbed my hand and leaned into me from the side of the tub. Her eyes intense with pain, fear and fatigue. She needed me. So I reminded her of the strong women who came before her. I reminded her that she was created for this. Makena was depending on her. We set like that, me holding on to her while she desperately tried to blow out with shaky breathe the pain of each strengthening contraction. Finally it was time to push. I could tell she felt more in control. Khyre held her strong until we heard the sound we had been waiting been waiting for all day. A cry from Makena.