When Josie Maran delivered her second daughter on July 1, it was truly a natural experience. The model-actress-reality TV star gave birth in a kiddie pool under a honeysuckle bush in the backyard of her Pennsylvania farmhouse as family members and friends looked on.Maran with daughter Indi Joon (Twitter)
It was the second outdoor home birth for the one-time "Dancing With the Stars" contestant, who has her own natural cosmetics line and lives a very eco-friendly lifestyle, and she detailed the event (and shared photos) in her People.com blog. Crediting a spicy meal at a Mexican restaurant for helping to trigger her labor, Maran noted that her water broke while she was standing on a staircase in her summer home and she immediately headed outside. "Soon I was sitting in a blow-up kiddie swimming pool in my backyard with my midwives, family, and friends gathered around," she wrote. "My dear husband was in the pool with me, encouraging me, telling me that I was powerful, capable, and beautiful."Big sister Rumi kisses Indi (Twitter)
The labor process lasted four hours. While Maran's photographer-director husband, Ali Alborzi, tended to her, their 5-year-old daughter, Rumi Joon, "danced around" the yard collecting flowers to "make me clover crowns," Maran blogged. But she was never far away. "When I was struggling, she gave me lots of kisses to help me through." The little girl also played hostess, passing around a plate of cookies to guests who were there to witness the birth, which took place under a honeysuckle bush.
Maran also wrote about a charm necklace she wore during the labor. At her baby shower, guests each contributed a charm for it and the special memento helped get her through the birthing process. "The charms and the women's wishes were all so different — some wished me strength and perseverance; others wished me lightness and freedom. The love and power in my necklace reminded me that I'm never alone, even when I'm in labor."
When Indi Joon Maran Alborzi arrived at 2:31 p.m., Alborzi caught the 7 ½ pound, 20 inch baby girl in the water. "As soon as she was born, Indi let out a triumphant scream that sounded to me like, 'Hi there, I'm alive and kickin', guys!'" shared Maran. "She was instantly alert to the world and the sunshine on her face." And while the couple already had the baby's name picked out, they didn't share it right away. "Ali and I kept Indi's name a secret for a few days. We have always loved the name. It feels strong, independent, and full of life. The name itself means 'gift,' which resonated with us because she is already such a blessing to our lives." Indi has the same middle name as her big sister. "Joon is a Farsi term of endearment meaning 'my dear' or "my beloved,'" wrote Maran. "It ties our daughters to their Persian heritage, and to each other."
As we saw on "Keeping Up With the Kardashians" recently when Kourtney Kardashian toyed with the idea of an at-home water birth — and quickly changed her mind — the unusual childbirth option is not something embraced by every mom, which Maran knows. "I understand that this birth choice isn't for everyone, but I believe in trusting my body to do what women have been doing for thousands of years. Childbirth isn't scary; it's a natural and powerful wonder," wrote Maran. "Being surrounded by birds, plants, and my family was much better than being in a hospital with impatient doctors and lots of beeping monitors. A home birth was the perfect choice for me — that's why I did it again."