As we were chatting with people in the States last month, many were surprised to find out that I had a C-section with Isla, and I realized that we never really talked much about her birth. Part of that is because having a newborn leaves very little time for sitting and writing… any free time I had I cleaned, worked, made dinner, slept. :) Another part of it is that it was a really difficult time, and for a while I was a little bitter about the whole experience and still grieving – in a way – the loss of what I expected childbirth to be like. So I thought, on the eve of Isla’s first birthday, I’d actually tell the story. No worries, I’m not about going all TMI on you. Just the basics.
So. This was me about a year ago:
Very pregnant, very uncomfortable, tired and super impatient to get that baby out of my belly. (Side note to any baby-delivery doctors out there: Don’t ever tell a pregnant girl that her baby “will definitely come early” a month before her due date. That makes for a very long month.)
My mom had been here for about a week, helping get things ready and hanging out a bit (and helping us eat all the meals I had pre-prepared and frozen. Why didn’t I save them til after the baby was born???? I’ll blame it on pregnancy brain. And laziness.)
It was Saturday and my dad was coming to Beirut soon, so we went to the mall to pick up his birthday present. I think I lasted about 15 minutes before I was just too uncomfortable walking around, so we went home. I napped, we ate dinner, and I just wasn’t feeling good, so I napped some more. Everyone was heading to bed, and I thought I’d take a warm bath – that had helped me feel better before. I had just gotten the bath filled, sat down, and all of a sudden uncomfortable became unbearable. I got out, stumbled to our room where Caleb had just laid down for the night and I think I probably started crying cause I was in so much pain. Actually, I think the words that came out of my mouth were, “I changed my mind! I don’t want to have a baby.”
I guess that was the clue that it was go time. My mom came running in, she and Caleb packed my hospital bag (there’s that 9-months-pregnant laziness again… no idea where the famous nesting instinct was…), and I texted my doctor.
Thankfully it was 11pm on a Saturday night, so the five minute drive to the hospital actually only took five minutes. We arrived, the intern (or resident? I forget what she was, but she was nice) checked me out and told me that I was for sure in labor and the baby would be here soon. I’m pretty sure one of the first words out of my mouth had something to do with the epidural and she assured me I would get it soon.
This is the part where I don’t mention some of the check-in procedures in the labor and delivery unit. Suffice it to say I was slightly surprised and wish I had known in advance what they would have me do.
They got me into my room, and hooked me up to an IV and a few other machines. I was so thankful that they didn’t follow the “only one visitor allowed” rule and let my mom, Caleb and Mona (our pastor’s wife, director of Safe Haven, and dear friend) all stay in the room with me.
The 16 year old anesthesiologist (okay maybe that’s a bit of an exaggeration…) came in and gave me my epidural… which took the edge off of the contractions just enough that I could get some rest…
(Here’s our girl on her birthday eve… such a silly one, she is!)