The unexpected baby I announced in November before telling any friends or family came Saturday. The one whose gender I publicly lamented. The one for whom I lay awake every night last week wondering if she’d come or not and worrying if she’d interrupt my life too much.
Then, when the contractions got 5 minutes apart during Star Trek Friday night about 10pm, I started feeling guilty. I started having premonitions of something awful happening to the new baby or her mother. Then, when the dilation was inadequate, despite pacing the hospital halls til after 3am, the fears increased even further. Even Pretty Bride started having them.
PB: I’m worried this isn’t going to go well. She’s bigger than the others. My contractions virtually cease when I sit or lie down, but I can’t keep standing and pacing all night. I haven’t eaten since lunch yesterday and am just too exhausted…
Me: Maybe I need the drugs.
PB: *gives me the finger*
She got an epidural and lay down for a 2hr nap. I tried to do the same after they refused to give me any drugs. Around 6am, dilation was still way inadequate, and they started talking about pitocin, which we didn’t want to do.
At this point, I started flashing back to when Maddie was born–my first experience in a delivery room. It was awful. Of course, when I made the mistake of responding to a DM in this fashion to Tanis, I got this reply:
“SHUT THE FUCK UP!! You aren’t doing any of the WORK you dope. Be thankful for that cuz it fucking hurts. LOL. They’ll be fine. Hang tough.”
Here’s the thing. I have two horribly debilitating medical conditions that make being around a delivering mother miserable:
First, if I even think about needles and their going into a person’s skin, I pass out. I think it’s called being “vasovagal.” I think “vaginical” is more appropriate though. A few of the places I’ve passed out because of thinking about blood: a movie theater, church, my highschool lobby next to The Figurehead, an Air Force clinic next to Freaky Weasel. If this seems to not exactly jive with going to war twice and working in medical facilities both times, you’re right–it doesn’t. But God has a sense of humor and likes to let others laugh at my struggles.
Second, I’m way too prone to empathy. This is why I prefer to watch movies from the “drama” category alone. It’s why I can’t read Maggie’s Violence UnSilenced website very often (and certainly not from my office).
So, during the entirety of Maddie’s coming into the world, I was either averting my eyes to avoid hitting the floor or wiping them because the process caused so much pain in the girl I love, and there wasn’t a damned thing I could do about it.
Getting back to this delivery…we were wrong. Once the dilation was where it needed to be, little Lola came out just fine. We had a brief scare when the cord was around her neck, and she didn’t cry for the first few minutes, but the docs all say she’s great. All 8 pounds + of her. God still likes me after all.
Last night, as the 3 of us finally lay down in our bed, Pretty Bride pointed to my wrist.
PB: You’re still wearing your wristband, silly. No one’s going to force you to identify yourself any more when you want to see your new baby!
Me: I know. I’m just proud of what it represents.