It’s taken me a week to recover myself, but I will now document the story of Malcolm’s birth.
We went to the hospital at 7:30 on Friday morning for my scheduled induction. My CNM and I had talked about doing this for a multitude of reasons – the biggest being she had many, many more patients due the rest of the month and I definitely wanted to make sure she was the one who delivered the baby.
She came in at 8:30 and broke my water, which I expected to be painful (my water sort of sprung a slow leak with Kya) but it was nothing – very quick and then a big warm gush. We had hoped this alone would start contractions, but it really didn’t. So at about 10, they slowly started me on pitocin… only about 2 units. This didn’t do anything. I was feeling crampy but not contractiony, which was really frustrating. I was getting sort of bored, as were my sister and Scott, who had quickly burned through a full issue of O magazine and anything good on cable (we settled for “101 Most Memorable SNL Moments”). The nurse kept upping my dose by one or two units, and by 2 PM, I was starving (jello and popsicles don’t do it for me), so my CNM (who is now one of my very favorite people) snuck me cereal. Those of you who know of my love for cereal will understand how much this meant to me.
By about 5 PM (Scotty, feel free to correct my times – I don’t remember that part too well), I was 5 cm dilated, contracting pretty regularly. The next nurse on the shift upped me to 12 units of pitocin, and that did the trick. Three hours later, I was 8 cm, in massive amounts of pain, and they started to get ready. I finally started pushing at around 8:45, and it hurt like total hell. It was like trying to shit out a giant, flaming bowling ball of sheer terror. I was employing every breathing technique kundalini yoga ever taught me (sat naam, dammit, focus on opening your crown chakra). The weirdest part was that I kept visualizing myself walking up the stairs to my a house my grandmother lived in when I was little, and this was bizarrely comforting. I had said all along that I didn’t want any pain-relieving drugs (I had an epidural with K), and I never caved – which may or may not be one of the stupidest things I’ve ever done. But by the time I got to the point where I felt like I was completely going to just give up, it was too late anyway. And then out came his head, which was momentary relief until they told me to give another giant push for the shoulders. The shoulders? I forgot about those. That hurt more than the head. I was emitting sounds from my throat that were completely primal (I was strangely still very self-aware and worried that I was scaring other people on the floor – which I’m sure I was). And then he was here. And all I could do was cry – it was a mixture of amazement and relief and shock and complete, utter love.
He’s been a perfect baby – totally peaceful and sweet, unless he’s naked or hungry. He’s already starting to develop a schedule – I actually got four consecutive hours of sleep last night. We’re working on breastfeeding – he seems to be picky about his tits – if he doesn’t want the left, he refuses it and will only accept the right, or vice versa. I could lose my entire day just watching him do nothing, which probably sounds insane to anyone except a mother.
Oh, and his name:
Mercury: After Freddie Mercury.