Sunday, January 10, 2010
Eleven years ago, almost to the minute of this writing, my second son was born.
It was a scary birth, very fast-paced and overwhelming. Determined not to have the same medical procedures imposed upon me during my first birth, I wanted this to be all natural. Oh, to be blissfully ignorant once again.
Well, all of my "all-natural" ideals flew out the window about 5 cm in.
Michael and I were alone in the labor and delivery room. None of my family came to the hospital because we told them it was too early. Our instructions were, Michael would call when things "got exciting".
It got exciting in a hurry.
I laid there on my side, demanding a cool cloth to cover my face so I could feel free to make ugly birthing faces in peace. What is going on? This is nothing like Noah's birth! If this is just the beginning, I am totally gonna die with six or seven hours of this!
That was always my downfall, during all six of my births. I rated the pain, and whether or not I could endure at that level for several hours. It would discourage me, I would cry, want to puke, shiver and shake...then within an hour so...feeling as though I was on the threshold of death....a baby would come out.
Well, this was just my second birth...and I was in pain.
When the nurse came in and offered me something for the pain, all of my lofty, best-laid plans were forgotten.
"GIVE ME SOMETHING!!!!!"
The nurse--bless her beautiful, amazing, wondrous, drug-peddling soul--gave me some Stadol in an IV, before the real Dope Man could come and administer the epidural. This was after they blew all the veins in my right arm and was black and blue.
Then it was like an out of body experience. Like I was sitting up in the clouds, looking down upon the writhing, whiny woman on the hospital bed. I could still feel the contractions, but they were like an echo and I was detached from them. It was the strangest feeling.
Suddenly, I felt the weirdest sensation, almost like a pop inside. Then a gush of warm water. The nurse said, "Oh, good! Your water just broke. Things should be moving right along now."
She left the room and it was silent. Like the proverbial calm before the storm. When the Dope Man came into the room, they were just about to give me an epidural when something on the Earth shifted.
Felt like a baby was about to fall out of my lady parts. Fast.
Alarmed, I cried out to the nurse. She poo-pooed me. "Oh, its too soon. We just checked you at 5 cm. You still have a ways to go."
Meanwhile, it felt like the baby inside me was careening on a water slide down my uterus, cervix and birth canal. I was so pissed that the nurse didn't believe me. Michael was confused, too. I cried out again, "It feels like I have to push!"
It took everything in my power to keep him from falling out. Usually, you work with your body to help get the baby out. There I was, fighting to keep him in. The nurse, registering the sounds I was making, decided to lift up the sheet.
"Oh! You're right. Looks like the baby is on his way."
No sh!t, Sherlock!! I felt like telling her. I wanted to stab her with the pen she kept scribbling on my chart with. Beat her with her own white clogs.
But I couldn't because a baby was threatening to shoot outta me like a rocket. But I'm pretty sure, had this not been the case, I could have followed through with that nurse.
"You can't push. We have to wait for the doctor."
Two words you NEVER say to a laboring woman, "Don't push." Not unless you don't love your teeth.
She rolled me onto my side, which supposedly helps slow down a fast delivery. She shooed the Dope Man out of the room ("It's too late for that now." "Noooooooo!"), and stuck her hand between my legs from behind. She put her hand on my baby's head, almost as if she was keeping him from coming out.
"Oh, no. You're gonna make me deliver this baby, aren't you?"
Meanwhile, I was panting and grunting like a wild boar, trying to keep from pushing the baby out. Michael's face was horrified as he stood there, trying to comfort me. He was probably wishing my mama was there to help. He did an awesome job of distracting me until the ob walked in. Then there was a flurry of activity and Diego came bursting out. All my other babies came out carefully, slowly, with a gush of water. Not Diego, he burst. Like a rocket.
And he was born.
So handsome. Beautiful, with slanted eyes, dark hair and full lips. Which were open to a high-pitched scream/cry. The nurse, standing there filling out my chart, muttered under her breath, "Well, there is nothing wrong with his lungs."
There is a picture in Diego's baby book that pretty much sums up the moment. Michael is smiling, looking down at the gooey, purple-faced infant placed on my chest. I am laying there, my mouth hanging open in exhaustion, my face staring off into space like, I wonder if my vagina just got blown to bits.
Whenever I tell Diego his birth story, he laughs. He says the reason why he was in such a hurry to get out was because it was gross "down there". Yeh, that sounds just like Diego.
Happy birthday, son! I love you even though you drive me insane.
The painting above is a watercolor of Diego, that I painted when he was just a day old.