a) sleep in
b) coo over how cute Norah is
c) kiss Norah
d) munch on Norah's thighs
e) watch TV
f) wash several loads of laundry as I am officially out of clothes, and Rusty has no socks
It's been a restful day. Perhaps I can muster the strength to write the story of Norah's birth.
Friday April 4th
I go to my 39 week doctor's appointment and end up having slightly elevated blood pressure. When Dr comes in to do the dreaded pelvic exam he asks me how I am, and I respond "Arghumhuff, I'm tired of being pregnant" and he responds "Well, we'll see what we can do about that". After the dreaded pelvic exam he explains the possibility of preeclampsia and tells me he wants to induce labor on Monday. I think I could probably kiss him. But I don't.
Saturday April 5th
I eat Arby's and take a walk around Wal-Mart. After a full day of...um...dripping and little baby movement I think Rusty and I should go to the hospital to determine the status of the baby. We go to the hospital and Dr confirms. No change in the uterus. You were probably just peeing on yourself and your baby is sleeping. Dummy. Rusty and I go home and I bounce up and down on my exercise ball like there is no tomorrow.
Sunday April 6th
We see an otter in the creek. That is all.
Monday April 7th
At 6:25 in the morning we arrive at the hospital. About an hour later we have signed all the papers, I have donned a stylish hospital gown and am properly attached to a Pitocin drip, a regular IV, a blood pressure checker, a baby heart monitor and a contraction monitor and we are ready to roll. I tell Carol to get me some ice from Sonic, because surely I am going to need them within the hour, because surely, we will have this baby by lunch.
11am rolls around, and while we do not have a baby, at least the hospital gets TLC, which means I can watch What Not to Wear.
After What Not to Wear, still no baby, but I have peed 8568 times. Peeing is quite a feat considering all the contraptions I am hooked up to. In fact, peeing is about the only thing that is going on. At this rate, I'll have the baby by next Tuesday.
I'm pretty tired of lying in bed, so I get up again and bounce around on my exercise ball. While bouncing, my water breaks. Onto the ball, and the floor, and more on the floor. I laugh, because geez, having your water break feels alot like peeing your pants.
Up to this point, I've been having semi-regular contractions, but they are more uncomfortable than anything. I think to myself, "Shoot I can handle this" but somewhere in the back of my head I know that once my water breaks they get worse. And I am right. Oh, am I ever right. About 30 minutes into post-water breaking contractions I look at Rusty and say "I'm done." He thinks I mean I'm done, I'm not having this baby. What I really mean is, Holy crap I'm not having this baby unless I get some drugs. Drugs! Give me Drugs! We have Hours ahead of us you crazy man! Get the Drugs!
Rusty is a smart man. He gets the Drugs. And let me tell you what, having the epidural put in was terrifying because just as the man had a needle in my back and what doing his thing I had a contraction and then the blood pressure checker went off and started squeezing my arm and it was all I could do to push my face into my pillow and cry and try not to move around because shoot, that guy has a needle in my back. He finished and I about lost it, blubbering and crying and thinking Why aren't the Drugs working yet?
Soon the drugs start to work, and you know that feeling when your arm falls asleep? When you touch it you can feel your hand touching something but it might as well be touching a block of wood because your arm can't feel a darn thing? Well, that's how I felt from my chest to my toes. And it was Awesome. The previously crying and silent woman suddenly became bubbly and happy, cracking jokes and eating Jello. I kept thinking to myself, Dooce was right, I want to give all my friends epidurals for Christmas!
After a few happy hours of the Drugs, I become uncomfortable. That's the only way I can describe it, I'm just uncomfortable. Nothing makes me happy, no position is good, I'm just uncomfortable. And then the shaking begins. Uncontrollable, obnoxious, teeth-chattering, whole body shaking. And still uncomfortable, like I need to poop but I can't because I my legs are dead and I am attached to lots of machines. I tell the nurse that I feel like I need to poop, so she checks my cervix, and I think at this point I am dialated to 5, though I could be wrong about that. All I know is, I kind of wanted to hit that woman because she didn't tell me I could push and all I wanted to do was push.
Dr comes in just as the basketball championship begins to see how I am, and he suggests that maybe we'll have this baby by the end of the game. So I begin to judge how much longer I have by how much time is left in the game. And those stupid basketball players won't hurry up! They keep taking time-outs and shooting free throws, and what is with all the commercials?!?!?!
The game is almost over and the nurse comes to check me again, because I still just really want to push. And she tells me I am dialated to 9! 9! Almost done! Almost time to push! Yahoo!
Finally, I can push, and let me tell you, that is the most satisfying thing I have ever done in my life. Between contractions I chat and joke with the nurse and say "Wow, this is the easiest, best part of the whole thing!" I will soon change my mind on that one. The contractions are coming faster, and the pushing is harder and suddenly I'm pushing so hard I'm crying again. And because I'm crying I can't breathe. And because I can't breathe I'm crying harder. It's cyclical. And I think to myself, I'm going to die.
I am dramatic.
The nurse calls Dr in because we are almost done. With the Dr comes all kinds of other people. I have no idea why there are so many people in the room, but really I don't care because pushing is not fun anymore. Dr tells me to push one more time, Norah's head is out and as I push one last time, the rest of Norah emerges, but not before showering almost everyone in the room with fluid. Ha! This girl is a hoot, straight from the womb!
And then, I get to hold her. And I'm still crying, but at least I can breathe again. She's beautiful and healthy and I can't describe how I feel. Overwhelmed, maybe. Dazed, perhaps. And totally in love with my family.