Kateri was one of the easiest babies. She was always happy. So content that when Shane suggested we fly across country with her to go the Treasures of Byzantium exhibit as the Metropolitan Museum of Art when she was 10 mos old, I could honestly say, "That sounds like fun!" And it was. Cyril had gone from happy baby, to trying to compete for most mischievous toddler. Which, unfortunately, he was very successful at. No cup of coffee was safe if you put it down. Distraction and subterfuge came naturally and I would have pulled out all my hair, but the post partum shedding was doing that for me. He was at least cheerful as he went about his antics, but still exhausting, and thankfully, Kateri didn't seem to want to join in the competition, so we managed to get through our days.
And then came the news of a new arrival in the fall. Though feeling a little overwhelmed, I was excited to call up the midwives. I'd missed the visits and was excited to see who was teamed up together and have them meet the kids. Kateri loved going to 'Allie's house' as she called the Birth Center and accompanied me to most of the appointments.
Cyprian's due date was Oct 1st. We planned another home birth, but this time I wanted an ultrasound to check out the placenta placement and anything else it could tell us. Unfortunately, cord length was not something they could discern on the ultrasound, but they could see it was all functioning properly, the placenta was in a good location. Also clearly visible was the indisputable fact he was a boy. I figured after three surprises it would be nice to know which set of baby clothes to wash. And if I needed to spend time figuring out a middle name for a girl or not. We had already settled on Adele for the first, after Shane's great aunt. So instead we sorted out Cyprian's middle name there in the ultrasound room and after washing the boy clothes we had nothing left to do, but keep Cyril from setting the house on fire while we waited.
Shane asked me last night which of the births did I think was the best. Well, all of them were mostly straightforward with no real complications or sad endings so I feel like I could say all of them. I don't think of the hospital birth as bad. Not the birth part anyway, but that has nothing to do with the hospital. Somehow Cyprian's birth seems very memorable, but maybe because it was the most recent. recent being 7 yrs ago. Or maybe because I got to experience something new this time.
Like Audrey's, labor started around 3:00 am with my water breaking. Then it went on more like Cyril's and Pippn arrived weighing 7lbs 12 oz, 4:43am. See why I am hoping for an afternoon baby? I am sure everyone who will attend and come see Malachi would appreciate it too. But at least not getting a full night's sleep was offset by the not too long labor. I hope I am not mistaken in expecting this one to mostly follow suit. Funny that both boy's labors were 2hrs or less. Maybe Malachi can be the record breaker?
The brevity, coupled with the intensity, was a little tiring and I felt rather spent afterwards. As did Shane who had been helping alleviate the lower back pain by massaging it for the better part of an hour, getting a short break when the midwife took a turn. Still I got up to clean off. Shane helped me into the tub and as I sat there I started to feel worse and worse. Where was my post-delivery high? I felt like I was still in transition, when you feel that if you tore off all your skin and jumped out the 2nd story window, you'd actually feel better than you do right now. I told Shane I didn't feel well and maybe I wanted to get out, I wasn't sure. And then, I passed out.
Shane said it was the most bizarre thing so see my body go absolutely limp. He quickly bent down and scooped me up, out of the tub and put me on the bed. He said the feeling of carrying such dead weight was eerie. Shortly after, the midwife cracked an ammonia capsule under my nose and I came to.
But I had not idea where I was or what was or had happened. I screamed. I saw the midwives and wondered who these strange ladies were and what they had done/were doing to me. I thought I was in some medical experiment and had no clue how I had gotten there. I heard one midwife say
"Quick, give her the baby!"
But still nothing registered. I felt cold all over and my teeth were chattering, despite the pile of blankets and the warm room. Finally, I looked up and saw Shane's face leaning over me. All at once, though still having no idea as to what was going on, I felt safe and that no matter what was/had happened everything was going to be ok. Shane was there. We lay there, the three of us, huddled on the bed as I slowly took in what was really going on, felt my body temp returning to normal, and realized the little baby on my chest was our new son.
And then I probably asked for and was given food.
So given the varied experiences, I am very curious to see how this next one goes. Will it follow suit with the boys' deliveries being fast and furious? I am hoping for not too much back labor this time, though I've heard the water can help with that so maybe Shane can keep some reserves and give me a back rub later, See why I wanted to wait until Shane was feeling better and all recovered? Knowing he is there to make me feel safe and grounded is so comforting and I couldn't imagine going through it without him.
I was a little mean last week, when he was out for dinner and guy time with his brother-in-law. I specifically made sure he turned his phone on before they left. So when I texted him to bring some milk on his way home and did not hear from him I got a little annoyed. 30 min later I called and got no answer. So I left a little message with the baby's weight etc and said I'd send a picture soon.
A little later he called and said he saw that I had called, but he'd left his phone in the truck, and what was up? I started to tell him what the message said. He was silent.
"Are you serious?"
"No, but I could have been. And you wouldn't have known because you didn't take your phone."
He told me I had him for a second. Which I was glad of. Maybe it was mean, but I wanted to make sure he'd be available when it is real. Whenever that may be.