I went to work as usual that morning, my only concern so far being getting my stupid shoes on without losing my breakfast.
Sidebar and in all seriousness, if I could offer any advice to the newly pregnant, it would be to create the habit early on of donning your shoes before eating, not after. Your other option is to find yourself with child only within the holy bounds of matrimony. That way, if you're anything like me and ignore the complications of breakfast first, shoes second Every. Fricken. Day, you can get your husband to put your damn shoes on for you because it's his fault you can't reach your feet now anyway. God.
Now, where was I? Oh yeah, at work and about to meet mum before going for an ultrasound before meeting with my OB at 2pm.
The ultrasound showed *drumroll* that my baby was still breech (surprised? colour me duh but after the weeks of trying everything under the sun and/or on the internet to get this kid to shift, I was) and still tangled up in its umbilical cord. Oh, and that lump sticking out over there that I thought was a head? Was knees. Sooooo, those weeks I mentioned in the parentheses above, consisting of, but not limited to, ice packing my belly while hanging upside down and playing really loud country music to its headular region in an effort to encourage the baby to turn away from the icky things and right way up, was a complete waste of time because knees apparently don't give a damn about country music and sub zero temperatures. God.
Anyway, armed with my Oh So Surprising! and up to date ultrasounds, I went to see Chris, who prodded and palpated my expanified girth before sorrowfully announcing that the odds of the weebs turning on its own were minimal, so when did I want to have this baby?
I gulped and he called theatre to book me in for a c-section the following morning at 11am.
Once the call was made, the anaesthetist arrived to get all the technical details required to numb the living fuck out of my lower half without me going over all allergic or anything. In the midst of all the 'has anyone in your family ever died from an anaesthetic?' questions, I was still reeling because I'm either stubborn or stupid, but this wasn't how I imagined having my child would be. Oh, I know that having the baby is what matters, not how you have it but honestly, that's a big wank, so finally accepting that a natural birth was out of the question stunk. And anyway, what if the baby was destined to turn on Wednesday, and there we were, slicing it out before it had a chance to on Tuesday?
The time line gets a little hazy here, but it would have been around 5pm when I remembered that I forgot to ask my doctor what to do if I went into labour overnight, because shit happens, you know?
Once I got there, a big-arsed monitor was strapped to my belly and over the next hour, my belly was, uh, monitored for contractions and fetal movement. Weebee, by the way, was verrrry quiet, even if my uterus wasn't. By 6.30pm, my OB was called and by 6.31, the exam he requested showed that I was effaced and beginning to dilate. Meanwhile, all I wanted to do was go home to my cat. Be that as it may, I had to wait until Chris came back at the hospital at 9pm before I could. I was allowed to go for a walk to pass the time, but was instructed to return immediately if my waters broke. Waters? Breaking? Uh, okay, so this being labour thing must be for real. Mum and I fart arsed about til my doctor arrived, which he did, then by 9.30, I learned that I was going to have my baby that night.
From then on, things moved really quickly, with consent forms being signed, a surgical team being organised, and me doing a champion job of not crying. It still seems so unfair because as labour set in, my body responded really well and I felt amazing, like I could conquer the world, and if had anyone asked me to, I bet I could have run a marathon that night.
By 10pm, I was in the operating theatre and soon after, I was flat on my back and without the ability to move anything from the waist down. I'll never forget how my contractions felt before that time, and I'll never forget how sad I felt when they abated as the spinal anaesthetic took hold. With all respect to anyone who opts for an elective cesarean, I have no idea why anyone would because the whole experience, even with the fantastic theatre staff, a midwife who blew up a glove, drew a face on it and stuck it next to me on the operating table, and an anaesthetist who held my hand, stroked my head and explained every noise, sensation and light to help me relax, was horrible.
Soon enough though, the screen between me and the action was dropped and my baby was almost pulled out butt first. Note I said 'almost', as the screen went right back up again because despite its body being liberated, the baby's head was somehow still stuck tight. Then there was all this prodding and pulling and lots of me asking if it was a boy or a girl, and then at exactly 10.40pm, my son was born.
I held him for as long as I was allowed, and then he was taken away to be cleaned, weighed, measured, dressed and swaddled. I've never missed anyone as much as I missed him during that time.
His vital statistics were: weighing in at 7 pounds, 11 ounces, 50 centimeters long, and his head was 36.6 centimeters in circumference.
I thought it would take time and familiarity until I could truly love my child. I never realised that bond would be instant. This little man means the world to me. When I look at him, my heart swells, and when I hold him, nothing else matters except the warmth of his breath and the beat of his heart against mine. I didn't know there was a hole in my life until Daniel came along to fill it.
This is my son. This is my love, my life, my everything.