Gideon Brian Steele // A Birth Story

I will always look back on the day our sweet Gideon was born, as a beautiful picture of God's gracious mercy to me.  So many prayers and love surrounded his birth. A beautiful embodiment of the community God has put in our life right now.

As I hit 38 weeks, we were fully hunkered down to cruise right into December sans baby.  That's why I was still wrapping up my massive nesting list.  Hello unfinished photo projects and trashy back porch.  We were convinced that early births and I were never meant to be.  Hence our baby moon trip to St Louis, just the weekend before.

On Saturday afternoon, we drove my Australian friend to the airport after her four day visit.  I literally had to ask Adam to pull over to I could pee every 50 miles which was equal parts annoying and embarrassing and I started to have irksome braxton hicks as we drove to our small group that night.  Knowing it was nothing, I didn't bother timing or paying much attention to them.  I would only be setting myself up for disappointment.  When the labor was real, I would know the labor was real.

One of the most special parts of that night was the few hours I spent with our small group girls.  We had soup and homemade bread, shared stories from our honeymoons and spent time talking about our own life stories.  As we went to prayer before packing up for home, I was able to share my fears and concerns with the blood work reports I had gotten that week.  My white blood counts, iron and Vitamin K levels were all very low despite my work at supplementing the entire fall.  I had been battling fears with facing the same bleeding and tearing problems I had with Emmett // you can read his birth story here.  That night, just hours before our little boy would be born, all my friends were surrounding me and praying for God to orchestrate a better experience than we could imagine.  I felt so surrounded with love.
^^ Our engagement spot in Malibu California. I love coming back with more babies each time! ^^
When Adam found out I had been having random contractions all night, he convinced me to time them when we got home.  It was 10:30 and they were only coming 15-20 minutes apart.  After a hot shower and I'm not going to lie -- a little primping of my hair and make-up on the very off chance this turned into real labor -- we went to bed.  Another hour and I had never really fallen asleep.  The contractions were just hard enough to keep me awake, but not close enough to convince me to time them.

By 12:30, I was walking around downstairs while Adam slept.  By 1:30, they were coming 5 minutes apart and lasting about 45 seconds.  That's when the midwife said she was on her way.  The whole time, everything felt so surreal.  How could I be in labor two weeks before my due date?!  Is this real life?!?!!  
Over the next hour, I continued to walk through the contractions.  Our house was dark and peaceful.  My sisters and mom came to pick up our sleeping Emmett.  Worship music played through the speakers of my phone.  Candles were lit.  Adam was being sweet and preparing everything for my much-hoped-for water-birth.  As each contraction would come, I tried to focus on only two things.  Staying relaxed and worshipping Jesus.

I would pray to keep distracted as each contraction hit and then peaked.  I prayed for our dear friends who just moved to Indonesia to serve and love as missionary pilots.  I prayed for my best friend that God would give her the desires of her heart.  I prayed that our baby would love and serve Jesus well.  I thanked God that He made my body to labor and birth precious babies into our family.
And then everything seemed to happen in a blur of slow motion.

I could feel that the baby was close.  Honestly, I was scared the midwife wouldn't make it to the house in time and I knew there wouldn't be time to set up the birth tub.  Adam began to fill our claw foot tub instead.

Just after I got into the water, the midwife arrived.  She kept telling me to listen to my body.  Frankly, my body just wanted to be done.  My body was also screaming for some painkilling drugs and I seriously contemplated never doing this to my body again. 

Suddenly, I could feel him move down.  Then his head came in one contraction.  Moments that felt like an eternity later, he was in my arms.  Our sweet second son born at 3:38 on a Sunday morning.

The miracle of this story?!  Not one scratch to my body.  Not one stitch was needed.  No calls to 911. No panic.  Just celebration.  Peace.  Gratitude.  So much gratitude.  I couldn't stop thanking God.  Literally out loud, over and over, Thank.You.God.  Thank.You.God.  Thank.You.God.
^^ I love this picture because it's so classic us -- a whole week late on switching this clock back. haha ^^
 ^^ I cannot even tell you how much I adore this man I am blessed to have babies with.  He is such a rock in my heart and life.  ^^
 ^^ So many grateful moments of prayer and praise to Jesus ^^
^^ Weighing in at 8lbs 11oz and 22" long, Gideon is almost a whole pound less than Emmett!! He seems so tiny to us. ^^
 As I reflect on both the days of our little boys' births, I see God's miracle hand present at each.  With Emmett, the miracle was life, a spared life.  Living 5 blocks from the hospital.   Competent staff to stitch me up quickly.  Blood available for transfusions.  Ready support and help from my family.

With Gideon, the miracle came in the form of a straight forward labor and birth.  Simpler and faster than I could have ever imagined.  No tearing.  No excessive blood loss.  The feeling of normalcy in my body that is surreal and much sooner than I could have hoped.  A smooth transition as a family of four.  Our loving community of friends to celebrate with us.

I think through it all, God has reminded me that He is such a present existences in our life.  Always ready with a miracle for every situation we face.  Sometimes the miracle may come at the end of great chaos and brokenness, but sometimes the miracle slips in quietly in the most normal way possible.  We are truly so grateful and full of worship.

All our fret and worry is caused by calculating without God // Oswald Chambers

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Lots of thanks to my sweet friend, Jodi, for these special birth photos.  It's so fun that she has been a part of all the most special moments in Adam's and my life from engagement photo adventures to our wedding and now both of our boy's births.  Love you, girl!! 


  1. I could hardly see to read this because of the tears that blurred my vision! Oh wow, what a Jesus. I am so thankful with you, especially after a difficult first labor and delivery... I know those fears too. These pictures, well, I could cry buckets. So much beautiful emotion! And the first pictures of little Gideon just melt me. As for you, you look absolutely amazing. xoxo

  2. So beautiful friend, how cool of God to show up and reveal his power that night. He truly has blessed your growing little family. Love you girl.

  3. Loved reading your story, what a beautiful birth! So grateful it was fast and free of complications. Congratulations!

  4. God IS so good. Very happy for you!

  5. Girl, you have such a gift! What a beautiful story of God and his faithfulness! Love you! Congrats!!!!

  6. Beautiful!!!! Thanks for sharing. We got engaged on Malibu beach as well and what is really weird is I am due with our second son in a few weeks and his name is Gideon! So happy for you all!

  7. These photos are perfect. I'm so happy this time around was less dramatic- what a peaceful birth! Blessings!

  8. I loved this!! I had many tears reading it but I'm so glad The Lord blessed you with your little man!

  9. Okay. Where have I been? I LOVE that you're blogging again. And I am so incredibly happy for you and your little family of four. What an absolutely perfect birth story, and precious pictures to go with it. Congratulations!

  10. This is so so sweet. And made this pregnant soul cry and cry... so much joy and pain and anticipation and relief rolled up together. This post made me all the more excited to meet my own sweet bebe.

  11. We also have a little Gideon born in August 2015 about 2 weeks early also ;) So wonderful to read your home birth story and how it brought so much glory to God! Very sweet :)

    Ps found your blog when I was trying to find my own birth story on my blog to link someone to haha ryandcar.blogspot.com if you ever want to visit us!