Hello friends. To start off this update, I would like to take an inventory of what I am wearing. Slippers. My husband’s basketball shorts– pulled up to my ribs to avoid my gigantic incision– mesh underwear, a pad the size of the grand canyon, a nursing bra, two plastic cups that are supposed to fix my nipples so that my kid isn’t fighting an epic battle every time she eats, a hospital gown, and a towel in my wet hair. I am so sexy right now, I don’t how Mitch doesn’t just rip my clothes off as soon as he sees me.
The story of my daughter’s birth is epic. EPIC. So epic that I have at least three entries planned, one for labor day 1, one for labor day 2, and one for delivery. But I can deliver all the specifics in this one sentence: Augemented labor for 34 hours, followed by 2 1/2 hours of pushing, followed by a C-section.
A lot of the stuff from the last four days I don’t know if I could explain. There’s just so much too go through, so much perspective to gain, so many cosmic things that I’ll never understand or be able to communicate. Giving birth is just an amazing experience.
But… because I have all these words inside me until I can write them all down…. there is this:
During the c-section, I was so exhausted that I really thought I might pass out during the procedure. The drugs from the epidural were making my hands and arms shake so badly that my teeth were rattling. They actually had to tape my arms down to keep me from shaking the curtain. In three days, I’d had about six hours of sleep, and eaten only clear liquids (and a cheeseburger, but that’s a story for later….). When they were wheeling me in to the operating room, I looked at my husband and said, “I can’t do this.”
I don’t know what he said, because it was loud in there and he had a mask on, but he put his hand on my forehead and his eyes had tears in them. The stress from the last three days had been almost unbearable on my husband, and at that moment he looked to me like a whipped puppy, and I thought (not for the first time) how much harder it would be to be on the other end of things, unsure of your role and what would be expected of you, and having all your hopes and dreams riding on something you had no control over.
And then about ten minutes later, the surgeon said, “Dad, come look….”And Mitch stood up and looked over the curtain, and got that gooey-dreamy-dumbstruck look on his face that he had at our first ultrasound, when we saw the heartbeat.
And then I heard my daughter cry.
I’m not sure how to describe that moment in my life, because there were so many things going on and so many feelings rushing around and so many thoughts to catalog and emotions to work through… but one thing that I remember thinking about is how, just on the other side of that curtain, a little zygote that had started out as a part of me and a part of Mitch, spent the last ten months growing and growing and growing, and all the anticipation, and worry, and fear, and drama– it all came to this moment, when they pulled her out and tossed her into the world and it was time for her to either fall or learn to fly…. and my little girl grew wings, took her first breath, and shouted to me, “I’m alive! I’m alive! I’m alive!”
Am a mom. She is beautiful.