“We rush through our lives ever faster, but for now, let the hours be slow. Let each turn of the world be a chance for this boy to be loved more than he’ll ever know.”
I received this inscription in a card from my aunt. Every time I read it, I tear up a bit; often during my pregnancy people said things like, “Oh – there’s nothing like being a parent” or “You never knew you could love so much until you have children.” Everyone was right – I never knew being a mom could be like this, but we’ve spent the last week in absolute awe of our new son.
Last Saturday evening, our precious baby boy boy entered the world (looking quite cone-headed and extremely confused at his change of circumstances), and our world has completely changed perspective. Everything – everything – only matters insofar as it affects this little less-than-six-pound miracle at whom we have spent the last eight days staring and marveling and touching and holding. He is perfect, and we couldn’t be more overjoyed.
Obviously we did not really name him Spartacus, but for the purposes of this blog on the world wide web, I will continue to refer to him as such. I have students that have been emailing me for the last week asking about part of the summer reading project I promised to have posted by July 1, and I just can’t find the energy to worry. I posted on my website that I had a baby three weeks’ earlier than planned and thus not to worry; I have other things on my mind than summer reading.
Due to gestational hypertension, I was scheduled to be induced at 37 weeks, but the hospital would not call me until they had a bed available, so we waited – all of July 3rd and all of July 4th, watching Downton Abbey reruns with our hospital bags all packed, awaiting that phone call. Had we gone in on July 3rd as scheduled, we might have shared a fourth of July birthday. As we prepared to go to bed on Friday, July 4th, and as fireworks were making our dear Miss Annabelle very antsy, we got the call to come in. Our awesome neighbors kindly came to retrieve Annabelle for the weekend, and we headed to the next great adventure.
They had told us induction could last anywhere from one to three days – we did it in less than 24 hours. I spent most of it in an IV-narcotic stupor, though my poor husband didn’t sleep a wink; even though my brain apparently wasn’t feeling the pain, my body still was, and he spent it faithfully by my side, massaging and speaking words of comfort and encouragement like a rock star. They inserted a foley bulb to help me dilate and several hours later started pitocin. About 10:30 Saturday night, with extremely painful and close contractions, I got up feeling the need to pee. Hubster helped me stand up, and I proceeded to throw up into the nearest trash can. The nurse returned, informed Hubster out of my earshot that nausea often signifies the transition into active labor, and told me that if I’d like, we could have a baby in ten minutes’ time. I thought briefly of the pain relief of an epidural – I’d promised I didn’t want one, but by that point I didn’t care about promises, only the whimpering I kept hearing and didn’t quite register was coming from my vocal cords. The small rational part of my brain that was still working told me that the anesthesiologist would take longer to arrive than the baby and to just go for it.
The next few minutes was a blur of pain and pushing, punctuated by the nurse calling the OBs and yelling at them to, “Dress faster!” Shortly before 11 PM, Spartacus was born, to the shock of me, my husband, and most especially him.
Hubster cut the cord, and they placed him on my chest and left him and us alone for an hour to all marvel at each other. It was the neatest experience of my 25 years. He’s a skinny little fella – 5 pounds, 13 ounces, 19 3/4 inches long. And he’s perfect. My next several months of blog posts will probably focus more on being a new mother and less about being an English teacher, but that’s what’s occupying my mind right now, so I hope you will bear with me!
|Getting weighed – 5 lbs 13 oz|
|Post-delivery cuddles in the mother-baby unit|
|Ready to go home from the hospital!|