So, here we are living with the midwife until after I give birth. The plan was for me to move back into the foster home and continue the job I had. After all, I can pick up a 250lb. man on my due date. I rocked that place. I loved them and they love me. [Oh, the stories I could tell. My people there are long gone, but my heart melts when I think of them.] They delighted in watching me get huger and huger.

Anyway, we had been there for 2 weeks and still no baby. I had already downed castor oil in an effort to start labor and that didn’t work. It did make me want to throw up and I ended up sitting on the toilet a lot. {Is that too much information?} My due date was May 21, it was now June 4, but really it was miscalculated and I wasn’t overdue at all, but I had the perception that I was. So, we travel up to Portland for an ultra sound. The friendly doctor says, “It looks like you’re right on time. Not overdue at all. You might want to let your midwife know that the baby does have a large head, but it’s ok. Don’t worry. If you want to induce labor you can try taking black and blue cohosh, use the breast pump, and [one more thing that I really don’t want to mention- it makes the very pregnant wives cringe and the husbands grin]. I was far too tired to try all that today so the next morning I decide to give the herbs and the pump a try. Lo and Behold! Contractions start. Sporadic at first. Then every 5 minutes. Kelly is out watching tv so I tell him, “I’m in labor. I think.” He looks at me blankly, says, “Oh.” Then he gets up to go trim the hedges. Huh? Poor guy was in shock, I guess. So, I go back to my room. The phone rings and it’s my dad. I tell him that I think I’m in labor. He’s overjoyed. I realize we should probably go get some groceries so Kelly will have food to eat. So, we head out to the store, but first stop in at the foster home to check on my people and pick up a few things from my room. They are all so happy. The old men are telling me to go home and have a baby and the old ladies are smiling and rubbing my tummy. Contractions are now at 3 minutes apart & lasting 45 seconds. After our errands we head back home. After unloading the car, putting groceries away, and tidying up my room I am feeling tired. Contractions are at 2 minutes apart lasting 45 seconds and I can’t talk through them anymore. So we let our midwives know and call my doula, who is now a midwife.

Labor labor labor, lots of peeing, lots of wondering when it was going to be over. I took 30 hours to dilate to 10 cm. I was getting tired. I started getting delirious. I had to stop drinking because the baby was making it so I couldn’t pee. My dad kept calling. My midwives wanted me to go to the hospital and I just kept saying, “No. Women have been having babies for millions of years, I am not about to fail at this.” I don’t even believe the earth is a million years old, but I wasn’t backing down. As I mentioned in another post, I did finally go to the hospital after my dad told me to go. It was probably the only time I ever obeyed him. So, we headed into Stayton hospital.

I’m in so much pain, by the way. Not just the normal labor pain, but Christopher had turned posterier & lodged himself against my pelvic bone. He was not getting out like that.

We get to the hospital and Dr. Yeager comes in and says, “I’m choosing to give you a C-section. We can’t find the baby’s heartbeat. If you don’t want a C-section you may call in another doctor. I am giving you one because I have a woman in the hospital right now that was in a similar situation. She chose vaginal birth and it was so traumatizing to her and the baby that they are not bonding. They’re both in shock. I’m not doing that again. You will not need a C-section again, you will most likely have a very good home birth next time.” I chose to bond with my baby.

Now I’m sitting on the edge of a hospital bed having these contractions every 30 seconds or so. Crying. Scared. Then the anaesthesiologist comes in, tells me he’s going to poke me in the back during a contraction, then I can lie down. I really wanted to see the needle. I asked Kelly to look and he swooned a bit then informed me that he was not looking at that thing.

Now, I’m pain free. I’m lying on my back being prepped for the surgery. I’m extremely loopy now. Talking about all kinds of things. My drug doctor, Chris, was part chinese & grew up in Hawaii. So we talked about that. I asked him to hold my hand. He said, “Don’t you want your husband to hold your hand?” I do have 2 hands. They each held one. He tells me that I will be numb from the chest down and won’t be able to feel myself breathing, but we’ll keep talking and I’ll know I’m breathing since you can’t talk without breathing. A few seconds later I look at him, my new love, and gasp, “I [big gasping breath] can’t [big gasping breath] breathe! [big gasping breath]. Then I laugh because I rememer what he said before, but who can blame me. I was numb! Have you ever had your lungs feel completely numb? Didn’t think so.

So, sweet baby Christopher was carved out of my body. Kelly holds him above me & proclaims through tears, “It’s a boy!” I look up and see baby but and the biggest set of…well, there was not doubt, it was indeed a boy. Kelly leaves to show him off and I’m still there holding the hand of my drug doctor. (I’ll just say right now that I am not in favor of drugs during labor, but man, did it make me happy and I didn’t have a choice.) So now they’re sewing me up and I’m getting impatient. I keep asking, “How much longer?” “What are you doing in there anyway?” “Is that your fist in my uterus?” “I felt that”. On and on. I couldn’t stop talking. I even said, “Why can’t I stop talking? I sound so dumb.” They were a good audience, though…and I’m still holding the man’s hand. Finally, I go into the recovery room. I’m naked. It’s just me and the Dr. Chris. He has to stay with me to moniter me. It’s June. I’m hot. I’m not into the warm blankets they kept putting on me. I kept throwing them off. I finally realize that I’m in here ’cause I had a baby and I haven’t even held him. I’m horrified! Aren’t I supposed to nurse that baby very first thing? So, Christopher comes floating in. Okay, he didn’t float, but I can’t remember who brought him in, but I remember seeing him being brought to me. Mind you, I am still numb from the chest down. I can somewhat control my arms, but they are also numb. So, I look at this completely perfect baby and say, “Oh my goodness, he looks like a conehead.” I’m sure I kissed that little conehead, too.

Now, this is where I really really embarrass myself. I decide to nurse the baby, but not having much control over my body I ask Dr. Chris to help me. He paused then asked, “Do you want to wait for nurse Inga?” Ummm, nooooooo. I will paraphrase here, I tell him I’ll hold the baby and he can just put ‘it’ in the baby’s mouth. What? Are you serious? I just told a man to do what? It ends up that sweet Christopher didn’t want to eat until about 8 hours after he was born. That child didn’t cry one bit. He just looked at me. He didn’t even sleep. The nursing ordeal went on for some time and I was so matter-of-fact about it. I really didn’t think it was a problem. I lost ALL inhibitions. Next up, the wheel me down the hall to my room. I keep throwing off the blankets and telling them I’m hot. I’m stark naked. Fortunately it was the middle of the night so there weren’t many people around, but Kelly’s mom and pastor were there. I don’t know what they saw. I don’t want to know what they saw!

All night long I look at Christopher and he looks at me. I cry. He doesn’t. I’m in awe. He was so perfect. I couldn’t understand why God chose me to be his mama. I still don’t understand. Especially since I’m so far from perfect. God seriously knew Christopher before he was formed in my womb. Who am I to deserve such a gift? I sang a song to him that I learned from a friend.

I am so small
You are so great
How did you notice me
Out here in space
I am but one
You made it all
How’d you remember me
When I am so small

[chorus]
What am I Lord
that you are mindful of me
mindful of me
care about me
say you love me

Were I a star
You’d be the sky
You were so far
So was I
A bit of sand
Upon your beach
So close at hand
You were out of my reach

[chorus]

I heard a tale
How can it be
You sent a man
As small as me
As big as you
but just my size
you sent him all this way
just to open up my eyes

[chorus]

Oh, I guess I should mention that I had refused to allow them to give me more pain meds because I didn’t want my baby getting them. Dr. Yeager explained that he had just sliced through 7 layers, I had a major surgery, but he would honor my request. I could call the nurses when I was ready. I was sure I wouldn’t be needing anything. I’m tough.

I’m not so tough. It was nice to get feeling back, but when it was about 6-8 inches above my incision I could feel it beginning to burn. I thought I could just breath through it. I’d be fine. So I don’t call. I start sweating. Sweating bullets. I’m in so much pain. I’m trying to lie perfectly still. I’m trying to breathe. I don’t want to call in a nurse now. She might wake Kelly and he had a big test to take in a few hours. So, I wait as long as I can. I finally call a nurse in and calmly say to her that I’d like a little something for the pain. She smiles. I tell her that on a scale of 1 to 10 with 10 being the highest that I’m about a 20. She comes back & gives me shot in the butt. That drug made me sick to the stomach and now the perfect baby wants to nurse and I’m starving. I nurse him and realize this is what being a woman is all about. These things on my chest that are so bothersome actually has a purpose. I am woman, hear me roar…or moo, as the case may be.

Dr. Chris & Dr. Yeager come in. I am now in complete control of myself and am covered up to my chin, as if it would matter now. I am so mortified. I remember every sordid detail. Dr. Chris, thankfully, goes first. He needs to check up on me. Tells me I’ll have some nerve damage in my thighs from pushing so hard for so long. Tells me not to worry about last night. No problem. Kelly says, “You probably see that all the time, right?” The doctors look at each other and chuckle. Apparently the answer was that they didn’t. I never saw that drug doctor again and I’m so glad for that.

This story is so much better when I’m telling it, but since you don’t have the pleasure of sitting on my couch & listening to the story this is the next best thing.

Now, I really must be on my way. I still haven’t really cleaned my house or gone grocery shopping and I don’t want to. WAHHHH!

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