The Birth Story of Matias Cutler Powell

I had been so worried that baby boy Powell would not come on his own and I would have to be induced again, just like I was with Maisie. I really wanted a homebirth and that wouldn’t be possible if I went over 42 weeks. At 41 weeks I went in for acupuncture. Let’s just say that was a bizarre feeling. Little needles in my hands, legs, feet and even my pinky toes! Then to the needles they hooked up little things that looked like jumper cables, which they ran some weird currents through. It was enough to make me sweat just sitting there. I went in for another treatment on December the 7th (almost 42 weeks) and was also prescribed and started on a homeopathic remedy to help me relax and not be so sad.

That same night I had a couple REAL contractions. I had been getting used to the Braxton Hicks, but had nothing more. Justin, Maisie, and I also had some really nice family time and had a little prayer all of us together. It was a special time that I will never forget. It was our last little night just the three of us.

Tuesday I woke up hopeful that baby boy would come on his own. At around 5pm I started getting contractions that were about ten minutes apart. They moved to about 5 minutes apart by 6:30. Justin made me a peanut butter and jelly sandwich (which I had one bite of) and I hopped in the bath, hoping to slow down labor as those contractions were painful! Yep, I was already chickening out! The bath did the opposite and I was in even more pain and the contractions became 1-2 minutes apart. This is when Justin decided it was time to call the midwife and doctor. I got out of the bath and labored in our bedroom lying down on the bed. I did notice when I just “let go” and relaxed, that the contractions were much more bearable. The midwife arrived at 9:30pm and checked to see how far along I was. I was SO happy to hear that I was already 5-6 centimeters! Labor became so intense and Justin was doing a great job applying pressure to my back. I wouldn’t have been able to do it without him there! At around 11pm, I was getting discouraged and asked the midwife to check me again because I just wanted it over with and didn’t think I could go on like this much longer. I was eight centimeters. I got in the bath again, which only made it more intense once again. I couldn’t handle being in the bath, so I got out and was going to make my way back to the bedroom.

Well, on my way to the bedroom, I had a contraction right in the entryway of our apartment! Let me just say that the entryway is the ONLY room Justin did not sweep and mop. It is where all our shoes are, Justin’s dirty bike, Maisie’s stroller, and then some furniture we found on the street that had not yet been cleaned. I ended up leaned over on one of the pieces of dirty furniture for my contractions.

(In the meantime, Maisie has woken up and was hysterical so Justin had gone back to comfort her and help her go back to sleep. While he was back there, I had an urge to push, so I did to have my water break all over the entry way and all over the doctor’s pants! Oopsy! Justin heard my water break and ran out to not miss the birth.)

Justin really didn’t want me to give birth in the entryway, so he was asking the midwife and doctor if I could move to the bedroom. I said I would, but then started getting another contraction and then out came his head! From the time my water broke it took about 20 minutes and my baby boy was out! Right there in our entryway! The embarrassing thing about this is that it is obviously right by our front door. The time I had him was 12:52am! I am hoping that nobody was just getting home because I know I was grunting, saying a few words that only one should say if they are pushing out an almost nine pound baby with no meds.

Baby boy came into the world with something to say. He screamed for the first 1 ½ hours of his life outside of the womb. It surprised me as this is opposite of what Maisie did. As he was coming out, the cord was not only wrapped around his neck, but also wrapped all around his body and shoulder. The doctor had to unwrap him before handing him to me!


It took us a day to name him and we finally decided on Matias Cutler Powell. I had always been set on Cutler for his first name (which is Justin’s dad’s middle name), but the pronunciation in Spanish is not so nice. Matias was given to our son in honor of my grandfather who was my most favorite man in the world and who passed away during the birth of our son. Matias was my grandpa’s dad’s name (my great-granddad). Matias means “gift of God” and that is exactly what our boy is! I think it is even fitting that the doctor “unwrapped” him before handing him to me! Our little gift of God! Matias Cutler Powell. 4 kilos, 51 cm


Stay tuned for a placenta story… if you dare!


  1. Amy Biemeck on January 8, 2010 at 7:46 am

    Beautiful story, Jen. I love a good homebirth story. 🙂 Good job!! So proud of you. That takes a lot of courage and you did it!! Beautiful baby, beautiful name.

  2. Alyssa on January 8, 2010 at 8:11 am

    So sweet, Jen! I love him! Wow, you are amazing and so tough!! Good job. 🙂 Love you!

  3. Jess on January 8, 2010 at 8:54 am

    I really enjoyed reading this Jen. What an adventure! You are the woman!
    I just love his name too – and to see what it means, even better!
    Congratulatons again on such a miracle!!

  4. Holly on January 8, 2010 at 9:05 am

    AMAZING!!! Thank you so much for sharing it, Jen! He’s just adorable! Congrats!! (How’s Maisie as a big sister?!! Probably awesome!)

  5. Carolina on January 8, 2010 at 9:10 am

    I love birth stories even after 4 years of mine. I should write them down somewhere. I get the no meds 9 lb baby thing….they hurt. Matias is so precious and he was a gift in time for Christmas. Can’t wait to hear how his personality develops. We love the Powells. Adios amigos!

  6. Diane on January 8, 2010 at 9:19 am

    What a wonderful and exciting birth story. Thanks for sharing. I love how you honored your Grandpa and George with his name, beautiful. Matias is so cute! Congrats to you all. 🙂

  7. Mom on January 8, 2010 at 9:21 am

    Oh…this just made me tear up. Such a precious time, such a precious child. God often gives His gifts in the most unlikely of places…like stables and dirty hallways. 🙂 I love you

  8. meredith on January 8, 2010 at 9:47 am

    well jesus was put in a manger! if that was good enough for him, a hallway for matias is will be!:) Jen this made me cry. just beautiful. every birth has such a unique story.(especially homebirths, but i guess im biaas 🙂 this is such a great one and love the similarities to our saviors birth…very cool. The thing you said about it being less painful when you just let go? so true and such a lesson we can all learn just for life in general! God designed the birth experience to teach us so much about life with him. its about trusting and letting go. Thank you for sharing this. im so proud of you and knew you could do it! piece a cake right? or placenta, whatever you prefer…:) love you.

  9. Bri Johns on January 8, 2010 at 9:49 am

    So cool Jen. Love that you shared the story with us.

  10. Aunt Connie on January 8, 2010 at 10:15 am

    what a beautiful story! I love the way you edited it for family ears. Your Grandpa would be so very proud of his new Great Grandson. 🙂

  11. Ann on January 8, 2010 at 10:18 am

    Thank you Jen for sharing this lovely story. I had heard it but not all the beautiful symbolism that has been shared. This is so touching and are things you will never forget. What a blessing from God to give birth, especially in such adventurous circumstances. God bless you Jen as you have many more stories to tell of being a Mom. I’m looking forward to the stories I’ll have to tell being a Grandma. 🙂

  12. webb on January 8, 2010 at 10:20 pm

    Hey sweet lady,
    Very sweet story. You’re one of my new heroes. Having been through this three times with my wife and with a daughter, it is as Cosby said, like pulling one’s lip over one’s head (I think that’s what he said).
    Hope the rash is clearing up. I’ve also been through that with one of mine although not to the degree that you described.
    Knew that all four of you are in my constant prayers. Love you all. JDW

  13. christa on January 9, 2010 at 12:05 am

    Beautiful story, Jen! Such a testament to the God given ability and power we have to birth! Can’t wait for the placenta story. Did Justin name it?

  14. Jocelyn on January 9, 2010 at 8:01 pm

    Oh Jen, wow, you are AMAZING my friend. I love how you write and all that you shared. . . .absolutely beautiful. My heart was overwhelmed with the meaning of Matias’ names and where they came from. We are sooo into having strong meanings of our kids names too. Many blessings to your beautiful family of 4~Joce

  15. Jamie on January 10, 2010 at 10:01 am

    1. Got really excited to see you had posted. 2. This is a really sweet story. Glad you wrote it out. 3. This post really made me miss you (because it’s all about me right:-) I soooo miss you guys…like it hurts sometimes. But then I reflect on how huge a blessing it is to have a friend that I love so much. Hugs and kisses to you and your sweet family.

  16. Alicia on January 12, 2010 at 11:43 pm

    Such a great story, Jen! I’m so proud of you! Good job, Mama!

  17. Katie Fretland on January 29, 2010 at 11:34 pm

    Awwww!!! Finally, I get to hear the details! Thank you for sharing this. I remember walking on Lone Tree with our strollers & girls, talking about labor. I am so proud of you & amazed that you and Justin really stuck to your instincts & stepped outside of the box. You never give yourself enough credit, Jen, so I will. You are incredible, brave & beautiful. So glad that we have our little (big!) boy’s in our arms & another wild & memorable experience in our hearts. Now for the next one…(haha)

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