We would like to announce, with much fanfare, the birth of our son Benjamin:
Here we thought our adventures were done. It turns out this is really just the beginning.
The day after my official due date, I was standing in the kitchen morosely munching on an ear of corn. I was wondering how long this baby was going to stay "inside", and what we could do to make him make his appearance in a reasonable amount of time. I felt a sharp pain -- and only had time to think, "Ow, that was weird" when a warm gush of fluid poured onto the floor. I froze, and had to process what was happening. "Um, Beeg... my water just broke!" He froze. Thankfully, my quick-thinking mother ran to the bathroom for a towel to wrap myself in; I waddled to the bathroom to formulate a plan. BG called the doctor, and Mom cleaned up the mess (and then had to clean up cat barf, as the cat had chosen that exact moment to throw up on the hardwood. Thanks, Lucy.)
Our doctor's advice was to call her back in two hours. In the meantime, my contractions were three minutes apart, 30 seconds long. I couldn't believe she said to just wait, as the books and all TV shows we ever saw said to go to the hospital when contractions were five minutes apart. After about 30 minutes, we called her back. BG argued with her: "I'm looking at the labour decision tree here and every path that leads to going to the hospital, we are facing." How could she argue with that? She agreed we could go to the hospital and she'd meet us there. It was now 4:30; I'd been in active, painful labour for two hours, and now it was rush hour.
I don't remember much of the ride down, except that BG swore a lot and he let me hold his hand at red lights. Admitting took one look at me and sent me directly to Labour & Delivery, where I bypassed all of the other pregnant ladies in triage (some of them gave me cold cloths to help deal with the one-minute-spaced contractions) and was put into a delivery room. Things were moving at the speed of light! I was seven centimeters dilated and getting ready to go.
The nurse paused. "Is this baby supposed to be head down?" I nodded, in the throes of yet another contraction. "Because I don't feel a head. I think I feel a bum." Everything stopped for me. I looked at BG and whispered, "If he's breech they're going to do a C-section." Two doctors and an ultrasound confirmed the nurse's suspicions: breech. I was still having long, frequent contractions, and while the obstetrician on call explained what was happening, I was being prepped for surgery and anesthesia. It all moved so fast, though I didn't really pay attention to that at the time.
I held on to the respiratory therapist while the spinal was administered. I was laid out, my arms spread out on either side of me. I started to shake, a side effect of the anesthetic. My teeth chattered, but I wasn't cold. BG was ushered in, and given a stool to sit on next to me. I could only see his eyes. I couldn't feel a thing below my ribs, but my body was rocked back and forth as the surgeons did their work.
Seconds later, our baby was born. BG was summoned to take photos; our alarmingly blue baby was carried over to the warming table to be suctioned and examined. He finally let out a cry, and his skin turned pink. I couldn't take my eyes off of him. I had never seen anybody so amazing in my entire life. I was transfixed. I wanted them to bring him to me. I was aching to touch him.
BG carried our son over to me and I smelled his sweet scent as the surgeons finished their work. Finally, I was placed on a stretcher and they handed him to me so I could have my fill. I still couldn't believe he was ours. I didn't sleep the first night at all, but spent the night staring at this tiny bundle of ours, and periodically making sure that he was still breathing.
These days our life is very different than it used to be. It revolves around Ben's schedule of eat/poop/sleep/eat (not nearly enough sleep in there for us.) Thank goodness for grandmothers that come to do the housework and the cleaning. Thank goodness for friends that understand what we're going through. Thank goodness for a husband that gets up with me for nighttime feedings and stays for diaper changes. I had no idea it would be this hard. I had no idea it would be this great.