On the night Charlie was born... Two years later and I still haven't written about that lovely, exhausting, painful day! I'd been dealing with excess fluid, had been expecting him at any point after being on bed rest from 30 weeks on, and was really feeling ready to not be pregnant. And so at just shy of 41 weeks I went in to Mercy to be induced. I was also a little concerned about the higher risk of cord prolapse that can happen when you have excess amniotic fluid...
On the morning of the 17th, we headed to the hospital to meet with Jen, my very favourite midwife. Raf had gone to preschool and our friend Margaret picked him up and took him home, and there he stayed. Meanwhile, we started the induction with cervidil. Well, hours later (with constant, worthless contractions) and many episodes of Parenthood watched, we had to make a decision about what to do - go home and begin again tomorrow, try pitocin, or break my waters. We chose the latter - and literally within minutes (after a massive tidal wave of amniotic fluid) I was in full blown labour.
The nurse was brilliant - so calm and helpful. With each contraction I popped on my hypnobabies tape and became very still. very, very quickly I reached transition. I was shaking but also remember feeling truly serene. I had a strong image of my dad, said something silently to him, and felt really at peace. And then into the tub I went - the water was so lovely and warm but I have to say that the pain was incredible. The contractions were one thing, but Charlie basically made his way into my birth canal in record speed and it was fairly agonizing. I know that I must have looked like a loon, because at one point I was so hot in the tub, didn't want to get out, and the nurse was putting et towels on my head!
I have a very vivid memory of asking for a tums as I suddenly experienced terrible acid. The nurse ran off, but by the time she got back, I very sheepishly and apologetically admitted that I no longer wanted it. By that point the hypnobabies narrator was driving me crazy so I asked Rich to turn it off, and then it was time to push. I'll try not to go on and on about how painful this was (fast labours are clearly more intense than longer ones!), but I could barely move when Jen needed me to, so bless her, she rolled up her trousers and got in the water to help bring Charlie safely into the world.
Complete euphoria! There is simply nothing like holding your child for the first time, particularly after such agony! It was getting close to midnight and frankly I have never felt more exhausted but exhilarated.
Here he is... just a few minutes old.
Charlie basically stayed up that entire night - while Rich slept :) Here he is catching up on some sleep the very next morning.
And a reminder of Raf's first meeting... <3 nbsp="" p="">
And then, in a blink of an eye, he turned ONE!