Dear Readers (Are any of you left?)
Here I am, nearing three years since my last post, and I understand that you’ve been waiting here at your computer screen, desperate to walk to the kitchen to get a snack or possibly use the bathroom, yet unwilling to tear yourselves away from my blog page. Well, now you can grab that sandwich and run to the toilet, in that order, because the wait is over! Now that I have boldly entered the world of motherhood, I decided to reveal the event that set it all in motion.
No, not that event. Gross, you guys.
The Birth Experience. (Not gross at all.)
It all started on December 23, 2014. It was a day like any other, despite the fact that I was twice my normal weight and no longer remembered what my feet looked like. I was pretty sure they had been ugly due to years of ballet training as a child, though, so no real loss there. My child was due to explode from my belly and into the world on December 27th. The timing was excellent, as the 27th was just one day prior to my one-year wedding anniversary to my husband, so, I presumed, our child would pop out, drive himself home, and feed and change himself while my husband and I celebrated a romantic anniversary excursion to the beach.
On this ordinary Wednesday, I began feeling slightly uncomfortable as the evening progressed. As my husband and I prepared for bed, we discussed our plans for Christmas Eve. I would continue baking cookies and putting the finishing touches on all of our gifts, we would proceed to our family Christmas Eve events, and our evening would culminate in our annual midnight feast with friends from college. It was a done deal.
Thirty seconds later, the deal began to come undone. My back really started to hurt. But it was no big deal, as it only lasted about a minute, and went away for eight minutes. Then it began to hurt again. For only about a minute, though, and then went away for eight minutes. Now, this will sound really weird, and I’m sure you’ll be as perplexed as I was, but it just kept happening.
“Um, do you think, um, maybe we should call the doctor? This seems like labor,” said my husband.
“Definitely not,” I assured him, in what quite possibly could be known as denial. “In the classes, they told us 5-1-1, remember? Five minutes between contractions that are at least one minute in length, for at least an hour. Mine are eight minutes apart, lasting just under a minute, and have been going on far longer than an hour. This is very obviously false labor. Let’s just hang out here all night while I scream every eight minutes.”
My husband begged to differ, and I did eventually cave and call my OB’s office, where the world’s worst doctor was on-call.
“You’re not in labor,” she said. “Drink a tall glass of water and lie on your left side. It will go away.”
Well, it didn’t go away, but I now had eight years’ medical training and an MD degree on my side, so I continued to stubbornly insist I wasn’t in labor, right up until 5:00am when my water broke, and I had to concede that my husband may have had a point for the last seven hours.
Once we arrived at the hospital, I screamed a lot more, but that was because they wouldn’t let me eat anything but fruit while they offered my husband a decked-out deli sandwich from the cafeteria. If I may humbly point out after the fact, I do believe delivering a baby requires significantly more energy (aka calories) than were contained in those little cantaloupe cubes.
As I am quite frightened of sharp objects, I declined an epidural and screamed for seven more hours until the most incredible little human entered the world, just in time to celebrate my husband’s and my favorite holiday with us. If you’re wondering, our 1st anniversary was deferred.
Please stay tuned for: Solids: What’s [not] for Dinner, a simple misstep-by-misstep guide to getting your baby to refuse solid foods and redecorate your walls with oatmeal and prune puree.