Friday, November 30, 2012

My Beautiful New Baby: The Birthin Part 1

I’ve been trying to get online and tell you all a fun little story about the newest addition to my family, but the internet has been much like my wife’s cervix…unreliable and uncooperative. So instead I’m typing it in Word and I will paste it in once blogger decides to work.

I guess I’ll just start with my day Wednesday, not that anybody reading this cares about what I did Wednesday, you all want to know about Brittney and Courtney, yeah, yeah, I know, but I’m the one writing so I get to choose what I write. And besides, I wasn’t at home to be able to tell you what Brittney did that day.  All I know is that the night before, she started having some activity down there, a little contraction here and there and some cramping so we went to bed excited thinking something might happen. Unfortunately, at 3a.m. everything stopped, but she was able to sleep well which for an eleven months pregnant woman, is a great thing. 

Wednesday morning, I went out to Britt’s parents’ house to work on some cabinets I’m building and I got a call that she had decided to drink some castor oil.  Ok, so most of you probably know what that entails, but for those who aren’t aware, that’s like greasing up the bobsled track and attaching a jet engine to the back of the sled….It gets the tummy rumbling, if ya know what I mean. And for the men in the crowd who might not know it, apparently once one part an eleven months’ pregnant woman’s abdomen starts heaving all the other parts join and a baby inevitably pops right out.

So the story goes, at some point late in the morning she drank some castor oil and called me to let me know…somehow, castor oil wasn’t the important information that my little A.D.D. brain picked up on, so when she hung up on me abruptly I was standing there with a puzzled look on my face trying to figure out what could possibly be going on. So I called my mother who was at my house with my lovely wife and had her check on Britt. She reported back that all was well, so I went about my business…which, truth be told, was shooting at butterflies and grasshoppers with a BB Gun with my young nephew.

We finally left to head back into town (her parents live 30 mins from us out in the country) and I decided to stop in at the auto body shop to straighten out some details with our minivan that has been totaled out…a fact which surprisingly enough will resurface a few more times in the story you are about to hear.
I finally got home sometime between 2pm and 4pm not really sure when, because at the time it wasn’t at all important.  When I came in I walked upstairs to check on Brittney, only to find her still in her night gown and robe kneeling on the floor leaning on her exercise ball moaning….. “Wait, a second, I recognize that moan, that’s her ‘I’m in labor’ moan.” I will never forget that moan, a soft, slow, steady moan, that eventually evolves into a violent screaming comparable to any scary movie you can think of.

So there she was moaning, so I ask how far apart her contractions are, “Four minutes,” she tell me, but then she starts to moan again….Nay, Nay, I say…they are more like 1-2 minutes apart it’s time to go.
Now here’s an important bit of advice for anybody who’s expecting to have a baby soon or ever. Make sure you have a plan for when the time comes. We had a plan alright, and Brittney knew it and I didn’t.  Don’t ask, I know, I know. I should have known the plan. I wish I had known the plan.  Life would have been so much better if I had just known the plan. But I didn’t. Fortunately my wife made it as dummy proof as possible and I just had to throw a mountain high pile of crap into the vehicle. Luckily once I threw everything in, I paused for a moment to think about what I was forgetting….my wife, duh. So I ran back in to get her in a bit of a flustered state. She was remarkably calm though, for a woman in labor.

We swung by her moms office to pick her up on the way since we were passing right by, which turned out to be one of the most brilliant things we did. So I was driving, calmly and carefully, while mom-in-law is back there timing contractions.

Now you all would be proud of me, I was able to keep cool and drive safely almost the entire way there. I tried so hard. I’ve always been a very disciplined driver and try to be dogmatic about going the speed limit and restraining from cutting people off. I’ve been known to shoot the bird a time or two but I typically try and be a courteous driver, and that day I did well…until the contractions started getting stronger. And I know they were getting stronger, because my wife told me they were.  She went from a beautiful, peaceful, dainty little thing that was holding my hand for that comforting touch during a time of slight discomfort, to the Incredible Hulk growling, and snarling trying to rip my hand from my arm.  Remember that song about the hand bone being connected to the arm bone? Well it’s wrong! The hand bone is obviously connected to the foot bone, because the harder she squeezed, the hard I pressed the accelerator.  It was like living in San Diego all over again, I was cruizin down “the 10” (that’s SoCal-ese for Interstate 10 for those of you who don’t know) going about 85-90 zippin in and out of traffic cutting people off and zooming past all of San Antonio as if they weren’t even moving. The contractions were getting closer and closer and the traffic was starting to pile up.  At one point mom-in-law shouted out “I’ve got hand sanitizer just in case I have to deliver this baby in the car.” Haha, just the thought makes me laugh cuz we’re borrowing the car from a friend while ours is in the shop…remember above when I mentioned the minivan that was totaled? Keep reading it comes up several more times.

Fortunately for Josh(the owner of the vehicle) we made it to the hospital without having a baby, so that’s good. Rachel (mom-in-law) ran in to get a wheel chair, and when she came out I just busted out laughing…you could have sat 2 sumo wrestlers side-by-side in that thing it was so wide. Lucky for me, Brittney saw it and saw the humor as well and tried to giggle between contractions.

We made it upstairs without any drama, except her threatening to puke all over me on the elevator because I was rolling her around while the elevator was going up…hey how was I supposed to know that was a bad idea?
We had called ahead so they were expecting us and let us straight into a L&D Room without having to stop off in the holding tank first.  Britt said it was a good thing cuz she would have scared all the other women. The contractions remained about 2 mins apart the whole time we were in there and after getting all the paper work filled out and all the preparatory work done in the room they checked her cervix and said she was at a 4. (for all of you men reading this who haven’t experienced the birthing process ask your wife, I’m not teaching a freakin anatomy class here) So she screamed and moaned and breathed and contracted and begged for drugs and moaned some more…for quite a long time, like over an hour. STILL just a 4! I thought she was gonna lose it right then and there. She was freaking out because the images of another 24 hr labor were already settling into her mind. We could tell the midwife was unconvinced that we were really ready to have a baby. She seemed to be leaning more toward the old you-drank-some-castor-oil-so-this-is-what-you-get routine and was in the early stages of her “easy let-down” preparatory speech. She told Britt to hop in the shower and see if the warm water might help sooth a bit and lessen the pain before we went straight to drugs. So we did. Britt entered the shower at a 4 and stayed in there for a while but well under an hour…again, I’m not good with time.

Britt finally completed that transition into the Hulk that we were talking about earlier while in the shower. She had made up her mind that she no longer wanted to do this and that she was ready for her epidural. Wow, I certainly did a good job of cleaning that up to make it PG rated content…haha, not that she said any words that were inappropriate or vulgar, it was just that Hulk tone with which she spoke that would frighten even the manliest of men. And I mean it!

So where were we???? Oh yeah, getting out of the shower demanding an epidural. Have you ever heard of Dave Ramsey? We did his program, we’re out of debt, we saved up to have our first child and paid cash, and we saved as much for this one as possible but cash flow was a lot different the second time around. And the point is this, last time we had the money for the epidural sitting in savings just waiting to see if she needed it or not…she did. This time, not so much. Last time it was $1,000, this time it was going to be $2,000. And let me be abundantly clear here, my wife is the one being cheap here not me, I’m just providing some context for some of the evenings events. So, Brittney, who is a thrifty little lady, had got to the point where she was ready to get the epidural no matter what. So we call in the midwife to get headed in that direction.
Midwife…yeah I said midwife. Brittney loves using the midwives because they encourage a much more conservative and natural approach, but they only deliver in the hospital so she has easy access to an epidural if need be. She loves them and they did great with our first one, so she definitely wanted to use them again for number two. What I liked about Amy is that when Britt started screaming for an epidural Amy agreed, then dragged her feet and took her sweet time making it happen.

Amy started into what we have all agreed was her “we’re gonna send you home cuz we’re not impressed with you progress” speech, but said she would check Britt just in case she might have somehow missed something, though she was certain she hadn’t….6! She’s a six, and the angels sang and the peasants rejoiced.  It really impressed everybody that Brittney had managed to dilate 2cm and completely changed Amy’s mind about what was going on. She concluded that the shower must have helped her to relax just enough to allow the contractions to do the work of opening the exit.  She had the nurses go ahead and get an I.V. started…who knew that would be such a fiasco? They tried, and tried, and tried some more, and finally got her stuck. But, then for some strange reason it popped back out. So they kept on trying.  All the while, Amy was talking about the options for pain management. I was trying to get her back into the shower to finish getting that cervix opened, and all the sudden everybody heard Brittney say “uh, Amy, there’s something weird down there. It’s not a contraction, but it’s a really strange feeling. I don’t know what that is!” Amy walked over, took a look and said, “Wow, that’s a head. It’s time to start pushing!”
Let me assure you, there were tears, screaming, yelling, laughing, and evil, evil, evil looks in that room that day, but that was probably the most emotionally charged moment.

Oh yeah, about that minivan… so here’s some irony for you. We were leaving the doctor’s office last month from one of her prenatal appointments. There we were, sitting in line waiting to pay to get out of the garage then suddenly we saw reverse lights come on in front of us and before either of us could react the lady in front of us slammed into the front of our minivan! Holy crap! Are you kidding me? Here we are a month before the due date and our minivan is totaled. And let me tell you it’s been quite an ordeal because we bought it from some missionaries to the Philippines who left the country before we got the title transferred over and come to find out both of their names were on the stupid thing and only one of them signed it…Big pain in the butt.

What is completely hysterical and hilarious to me is that the labor and delivery room window overlooked the exact location where our minivan was totaled just a month prior.
I needed to tell you that because the irony is overwhelming and I wanted to make sure I told you before we leave that room.

So back to the mystical magical delivery…She went from 6cm to Pushing in about 10-15 minutes, pushed 4 times….Incredible Hulk kind of pushing, Superman kind of pushing, “Wonder-woman ain’t got shit on me” kind of pushing. And screaming like you wouldn’t believe. She actually just started screaming as loud as I have ever heard anybody in my entire life scream but wasn’t actually pushing, so Amy told her to shutup and push! 1 push, “Holy crap I see the head.” Push 2 “Here comes the head, it’s almost out” Push 3 “AHHH the heads out, keep pushing” Push 4 “Wow the whole thing’s out, she’s born”
That was absolutely incredible! I can’t believe how incredible that was. It was pretty freaking amazing. If you’ve never seen it in real life you’re probably thinking I’m crazy, cuz yes, you are right, in health class in 8th grade it is nasty, but when it’s your baby it’s amazing.

But now we’re getting discharged after 2.5 full days in this place so I’m gonna quit writing…..

Check back soon, though, and I will tell you the true story of my wife the vampire!

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