In laboratory terms: I am no longer a 37°C incubator.
In baking terms: My biggest baking challenge ever has been completed.
In normal people terms: X was born on February 19th!
Yes, this is going to be a post about having my baby. I’ll try to be nice about it but it may become TMI-ish for some people.
I’ll start by saying that my pregnancy was relatively easy. No major complaints. No wacky cravings. No morning sickness. No heartburn. No hemorrhoids. No swollen ankles. No stretchmarks. I only gained 26lbs and it was all in my belly. (The kind of weight gain where you wouldn’t know I was pregnant if you looked at me from the back or dead-straight on.)
I’ll give all the mothers out there a chance to grab their pitchforks…
Got ’em? Nice and sharp? OK
At about 4 am, 6 days before my due date, I was woken up by a killer windstorm trying to blow my house down. I was… shall i say… moist. I thought to myself, ‘Did my water break or am I sweating bullets?’ I hit the bathroom and went back to bed. At 5 am, I woke up again in the same state and thought, ‘Maybe I am leaking amniotic fluid. But I’m not feeling any contractions or anything. Not even a mild cramp.’ My hospital is an hour away. I didn’t want to wake up Chef Hubby to drive down to the hospital for them to tell me I am just sweaty or incontinent and send me home. Back to bed. But by 6 am I started feeling these little pings in my abdomen. It was as if Fetus X was lightly tapping on my insides. Definitely not the ‘Oh Dear GOD, the PAIN’ contractions that every mother in the tri-state and Hudson Valley area told me I’d know when I felt them. I was still unconvinced that I was actually in labor, but I decided to head down to the hospital anyway. So I turned on the TV, watched some Batman (Adam West era), took a shower, watched an episode of GI Joe (yes the 80’s version) and then headed down to see what the OB had to say.
We got to the hospital at about 8:30 am and I was still only feeling those light little pings, but they were between 3 and 5 minutes apart. The nurse saw how relaxed I was and took her time getting everything together thinking I’d be back out the door. Then she asked me to give her a urine sample. She was asking me some questions while I was in the bathroom attempting to pee in a cup (I still haven’t mastered this skill). Just as I was walking out of the bathroom, she asked if my water had broken. I said I wasn’t sure, but just then I realized that, um… yeah it did. My legs were dripping with blood streaked fluid. I was still relaxed, watching Law and Order in the Labor/Delivery/Recovery room. My OB didn’t get his butt to the hospital until 9:30am. He told me he took his time because first babies usually take hours and hours to come. Then he examined me and quickly changed his tune. I was already 6cm dilated and 100% effaced. I still hadn’t felt any pain.
Moms? You’ve got your pitchforks. Now grab the torches and kerosene.
Send your significant others to collect the timber for the bonfire you are going to want to burn me on.
The fairy tale didn’t last for too much longer. By 10 I was in pain. The contractions instantaneously became real. And curl-over-in-a-ball painful. And right on top of each other. My nurse started squeezing IV bags into me to get me hydrated enough to get my wonderful epidural. The anesthesiologist got me hooked up in no time. (I think it hurt Chef Hubby more to see the titanic needle go into my back then it did me. I didn’t feel a thing beside a fetal head pushing on my coccyx. That’s right, Fetus X was facing front. Not good. I had to lay on my side to try to get him to turn around for easier delivery.
Don’t get the fire extinguishers just yet. This pain and pressure doesn’t last long.
Fetus X had different plans. By 11am, the doctor told me I was 9.5cm. By 11:30, I was a full 10cm and ready to push. After a few rounds of pushing, Baby X made his debut. I got his head out and he tuck-and-rolled his way out, practically on his own, at 11:57am. There was no screaming. No cursing. My husband’s hand wasn’t broken. I wasn’t sweaty or disheveled. I didn’t throw up or poo myself. I didn’t need an episiotomy. My doctor only needed to put in 1 stitch and he didn’t really need to but did anyway as a precaution.
OK. Come and get me. I am prepared to face my fate.
Oh wait. And I was up and walking around like nothing happened within a few hours. My belly is already starting to flatten out. I still don’t have any stretchmarks. I have a ‘perfect’ baby according to 2 pediatricians and the public opinion forum that is Facebook. And my 2 week old only woke up twice last night to be fed. Sorry.
I see the mob forming in front of my house. I’m going to go grab my machete now.
You don’t think I’m going down without a fight, do you?