"The finest hour I have seen is the one that comes between the edge of night and the break of day, it's when the darkness rolls away."
No song lyric has ever spoken to me so much as this one. I had two recurring dreams as a young child. I won't bore you with the details of the dreams but I would wake up from them crying and shaking, spending the rest of the night throwing-up. The only time I would feel better was when I saw that hint of sunlight in the sky. You know that look when it's not actually any lighter out but the sky seems to have a tiny glow to it? That is when the darkness is rolling away. At the time I didn't really know what was going on or why this happened to me. You know kids just live in the moment (externally at least). Years later I realized that these were my first experiences with anxiety. For years and years on into my twenties this would happen to me. The dreams went away but there were other scary things that would wake me up in the night and I would sit and wait for the darkness to roll away, then I could sleep.
When I had baby #3 this finest hour took on a new meaning. You see, my first two babies were born in the afternoon because the 1st was a c-section and the 2nd was highly medicated making him come into the world in a less than natural way. Baby #3 was altogether different. She came completely natural and it was a journey. If you think labor and delivery is just about getting a baby here that was not the case for me. Yes, that is the most important part but it also turned out that I needed to work through about twenty years of pain and self-loathing before my body would delivery this baby. I was certain that no one had ever been in such pain ever and there was no way I was going to come out on the other side. Towards the early morning hours I locked myself in the bathroom and was telling everyone and myself that I couldn't do this. It was after my midwife convinced me come out for just a minute that I noticed the sky changing. I felt almost instantly renewed. I was still uncertain about whether I could do this or not but I was gonna try. She was born soon after. Baby #4 came on her own too. This time there was no emotional journey. I had worked that out with #3. I could do this and I knew I could do this but I really didn't want to. I had a "let's just get this over with" kind of attitude. I was annoyed that it wasn't going as fast as I wanted, actually if you ask my husband he would say I was really pissed. After 26 hours she was born. It was 5:49am just before the sunrise on Easter morning. The finest hour became even more beautiful and just full of all things wonderful after this.
Recently, after briefly sharing the story of my last two births with a friend she commented on how fitting my name is. Funny, all my life I had never made that connection. She is right, my name is pretty fitting.