“I can’t believe we stayed up this late for that” I said to my fiancé as we turned off the movie we just painfully finished. He gave my belly a rub and rolled over. I then started my normal I can’t sleep routine and scrolled through Pinterest, and Facebook.
I aborted my scrolling when I started getting sharp pains in my lower back. It felt as is a little troll was stabbing my kidneys… The Google search began… “38 weeks pregnant and kidney pain”. My findings were inconclusive. I decided that woman who are 38 weeks pregnant complain about everything. I put down the smart phone and closed my eyes.
I got up to pee more than usual that night. Each time checking the clock only to be brutally reminded it’s only been an hour since my last bathroom adventure. I don’t know which was more annoying, the troll stabbing my kidneys or the frequent pee trips.
It just so happens it was also “spring forward” daylight savings. Between the late bed time, kidney troll, bathroom trips and the stupid clocks moving forward I “rested” for 4 hours before my water broke.
It was 4:30 am and I was about to sit down on the toilet and heard a slight “pop”. There I stood in a puddle of my own bodily fluid thinking “oh shit, I’m not ready for this”. The thing about your second child delivery is you know EXACTLY what you are up against, and the memory of the pain comes flooding back in that instant. I tried to remain calm.
I waddled back to our bedroom like a penguin with my underwear around my ankles and softly said, ” jakeeeee”
“What?” He responded, expecting me to tell him to let the dog outside (his favorite night time task).
“My water just broke” I said in the same soothing voice. I swear I saw flashes of light come from that dark bedroom as he ripped off the covers. He planted both feet on the ground, bent his knees and put his arms in ready position (like he was playing defense in some sporting event) and said, ” okay what do I do?”.
From there we scattered. I jumped in the shower, and he loaded the car with the bags we prepared just two days before. Jake called his mother, and woke up our daughter Saylor.
“It’s your brother’s birthday” we shared. Even our two year old was wondering what the hell was going on and why we were up so early. Daddy got her into a fresh diaper and PJ’s while mommy paced the kitchen waiting for Merme to come get her.
That’s when the contractions started. I had to hide the pain from Saylor. I didn’t want her worried about me. Try smiling through a contraction…. Not the easiest thing to do.
We said our goodbyes to Saylor and that we would see her in a couple hours. She was easily distracted by the promise of cartoons and breakfast at Merme’s house.
We get in the car and I grabed the “oh shit handle”. Contractions were three minutes apart and relentless. I realized I’d have at least 10 of them on the way to the hospital and started counting through them loudly using the occasional “fuck, fuck, fuck” as a cushion.
“Don’t go less than 80″ I harshly stated, and In the same breath I said, ” I want an epidural this time”.
“Babe, you told me you’d say this” Jake reluctantly responded as scripted to do so, “I’m supposed to remind you that you want to do this naturally like Saylor’s birth”.
” I know what I said!” I screeched with gritted teeth, ” when you push a kid out of your body you can REMIND me how it’s supposed to be done!”.His natural labor intervention stopped there.
We finally get to the hospital and my knuckles have turned white from my grasp on the handle.
“Just my bag” I say as I’m speed walking towards the building.
Jake must have thought I was crazy (more so than usual). As he approached the large sliding glass doors I was banging on them and screeching “it’s past five fifteen am!”. On the doors read a sign that said,
“MAIN ENTRANCE HOURS: 5:15 am-8pm”.
I dig out my cellphone and sure enough it read 5:55 am. Apparently the hospital main entrance didn’t get the “spring forward” memo.
The emergency entrance was on the other side of the building. Fantastic. This time I was behind jake, and he met me half way with a wheel chair.
When we get to the maternity floor I am dilated to 7 cm. “I want an epidural” I said, and my midwife entered the room.
My contractions were 3 minutes apart. I was sitting on the edge of the bed, back prepped for the needle and the nurse tells Jake to stand in front of me. He listens, but approaches me with caution. All is well until I’m told to ” breath through this one but don’t move”. He put his hand on my knee and rubbed. Thinking back it was a sweet gesture, but in the moment He received a sharp “DON’T touch me”.
I went from 100 to 0 in twenty minutes. Vikki, my midwife, sat in a seat next to jake and drank her coffee. All three of us were talking about everything under the sun besides the topic of my vagina dialating.
Vikki looks at jake and hesitantly asked him, “how involved in this labor do you want to be?”, she paused, “would you like to cut the cord?”.
Jakes eyes started to beam. He put his hands out in front of him as if he was playing football and answered, “Oh Hell yeah! I want to pull the little guy out”. His enthusiasm made Vikki and I laugh.
After about an hour Vikki checked the progress down there. 10 cm and his head was engaged. Go time.
They rolled a mirror over to the foot of the bed, so I could see EVERYTHING. “Encouragement” Vikki said when she caught the look of horror on my face.
At this time my contractions felt like small Braxton hicks. However, I knew to push with all I had when I felt that tiny annoyance in my abdomin.
Fifteen short minutes later I was watching Jake pull our little boy out of me and into the world.
I will never forget Jacobs face as he laid Hendrix on my chest.
Hendrix cried, and I cried. There is no better feeling in the world than holding your child for the first time.
Jake of course cut Hendrix’s cord, but not without a couple of science geeks comments…”look babe, it’s pulsing” and “did you see your placenta?”.
Leave it to Jake to geek out during a time like this. All of a sudden I loved my king even more.
For the next hour the three of us laid there lost in each other.
” We may not have it all together, but together we have it all”