Sunday, 10 April 2016

You don't have to read this, either

Nearly three years ago I posted my Fraggle birth story on this blog. You didn't have to read it; it was for me. Same with this post, which is also for me - because if I don't write it down I may later doubt that it ever happened.

***

Monday morning. 5:00 am. Contractions start. But they've started and stopped several times in recent weeks, so I figure who am I kidding? This baby is never coming out. 

Ok 5:30 and they hurt. But they aren't exactly regular. I wait and see. 

Alright. 6:00. I wake Hubby. I'm in labour. Yes for real, maybe don't just ignore me and go back to sleep this time. 

We decide to take Fraggle to daycare early. I go to the bathroom to brush my teeth. He wakes the sleepy (but surprisingly happy) toddler. 

Oh. Ouch. That's a lot of contractions isn't it. Or is it just one big, long one? It's impossible to tell. That can't be a good sign. I take a tooth-brushing break, leaning over the counter like women on tv often do. 

6:30. I ask Hubby to please page the midwife. Yes, now. 

Hi, midwife? This fucking hurts. No, contractions don't really stop, there isn't a break. Yep it's starting again. Ok, I'll see you at the hospital. 

Hubby feeds Fraggle. I walk downstairs. One. Step. At. A. Time. 

We have to go. Yes, now. 

Oh look. I got my boots on. Who needs socks. 

Fraggle screams because she doesn't get to finish her breakfast. The beginning of several disappointments resulting from this baby, honey. I'm so sorry. 

I walk to the car by myself. Win. 

Wow the car is cold. Hubby starts it. I try to wash the frost off the windsheild but there's no washer fluid. Better than no gas, like last time

I look at the clock. 7:17. Contraction. Yelling isn't an option so I breathe. I chant. "It's ok... It's ok..."  I wait. 

7:18. Contraction. Uh oh. "It's ok... It's ok..."

7:19. Shit. "IT'S OK..."

Hubby gets the kiddo in her snowsuit and into the car. Longest three minutes of all time. 

Hubby suggests maybe we drop Fraggle at daycare and then go to the hospital. Not gonna happen my dear. Drop me off first. Thanks for not asking if I'm sure. 

Hubby drives in the wrong direction. No, the hospital is *that* way. I wish yelling was an option. 

Fraggle's very quiet but asking where we're going. I'm answering through my breath. Hubby can't even hear her, he's too busy scraping the frost off the windshield with his credit card at the stoplight. I praise his ingenuity. He doesn't hear me. 

Oh good the hospital. Fraggle asks where we are. "At the midwife's office" seems like a good answer. I walk out of the car, wishing in retrospect that I'd had the capacity to remember to say goodbye to her - a fuck up for which I may never forgive myself. 

Hubby starts to walk in with me, but he can't leave her alone in the car. It's fine. I walk in on my own like a soldier in a trance. 

7:24. I pace into the main doors and request/demand a wheelchair and a ride to the birthing unit from the poor old hospital volunteer man wearing a blue vest. He wheels me upstairs, nice and slow. He asks if I think the baby is coming this morning. I tell him the baby is coming right *breath* now *breath*.  When can I yell?

He wheels me to the birthing unit triage. They know who I am thanks to my midwife who called ahead. It's a good thing because I couldn't tell them my name anyway. I thank the nice volunteer man (A simple "merci" is all I can manage in French at the moment), and I wait for a nurse to help me. No midwife in sight. 

I tell the nurse I'm scared and all alone and yes the baby is coming. I climb on the table and yell for her help. Yelling is finally an option. I vaguely remember arriving here last time and never getting checked by a nurse because six other poor women kept coming in ahead of me, yelling. As I've always said, yelling gets shit done. 

She returns and tells me I'm nine and half centimetres. I get wheeled to a room, leaving my coat and wallet and phone in triage. I don't know where my boots are. I might still be wearing them. 

I tell them that Hubby's coming. He's kinda tall, thin and blonde. His name is Hubby. 

Several nurses help me climb on a bed. I'm loud now, this fucking hurts and it's the worst and YOU HAVE TO HELP ME. Yes I want gas. One nurse asks another nurse where I came from. She answers that she doesn't really know, I've been here for four minutes. 

I tell every nurse to stop telling me I'm doing a great job and distract me with questions. Some of them ask questions and I nod or shake my head. Is this a boy? *Nods* Do I have another child? *Nods* Is Hubby tall? *Nods/shakes head* (Translation: Yes, compared to me but no, not really.) They eventually run out of questions and revert to telling me I'm doing a great job. I hate them. 

Midwife! Thank god. I very slowly and deliberately move my eyes to her eyes. She seems to want me to calm down. I don't, and I kinda start to hate her too. 

She asks a nurse to help her. She rushes around (much like the poor nurse last time but far more competently). She says we'll just need to break my waters but we'll wait for Hubby.  I - with gas mask locked firmly on my face - shake my head NO with fierce insistence that cannot be mistaken. 

Do I want more gas? Hmm. Is it helping? *Shakes head, shrugs shoulders, can't move muscles in face, shakes head again*

Ok. Not waiting for Hubby. Waters broken. I can start pushing if I want. Oh, ok. 

And then I scream bloody murder as I feel a human person's small-but-not-small-enough head move through my body and I can't seem to stop screaming even with three or five nurses trying to calm me the fuck down. THIS IS WHY I WANTED AN EPIDURAL YOU SHOULD NEVER DOUBT MY JUDGEMENT. 

I look up to the right and there is Hubby's glorious face through my scream. Relief like I've never felt. 

The baby falls out. 

Even more relief. 

One push, and a very long scream, and holy fuck what the fuck. 

It's 7:49. 

I whimper for a while. Do I want skin-to-skin? *Nods vehemently.

Hey look a baby. 

Now, god knows how long I endure body repairs by a midwife with very little patience for my complaining and even less interest in updating me on her progress - but a Hubby with remarkable patience (guilt? pity?) for my complaining and incredible tolerance for me squeezing his hand too hard. 

And yet there's a precious (although unnamed) 7lb 3oz baby boy on my chest which seems to make it all ok. 

A couple hours and some rushing by the midwives and we're home by 11:45 texting pictures to everyone we know. 

What is this life? 

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