On the eve of your 7th birthday, I planned to take the time to think back to all of the amazing stories of your life, but now that I sit down to write, I realise that I would need at least another 7 years just to make a dent in describing the wonderful little guy you are. Instead I thought I would share with you your entry into this world.
Around this time 7 years ago, I was beginning to wallow in self-pity, I was the size of a house and had grown too large for my maternity clothes, and I found movement uncomfortable. I was wondering if you would ever emerge from my whale like body and make us a family. I had been to the hospital earlier in the day to see the doctor as you were supposed to be born already! The wait was horrendous, around 2 hours and the doctor was really rude. We were with her long enough for her to say that I would be induced the following Saturday and that I was required to attend a pre-admission clinic to plan for my induction. It sounded more like I was signing up to join the military rather than planning for your arrival. I went from being excited about having a baby to being terrified, I wanted some control about your entry into the world and I didn’t want to be induced. Besides, we had a wedding to go to on that day, you couldn’t be born then. Grudgingly the rude doctor scribbled out the induction date and sent me on my way.
We, your dad and I, found our way to the pre-admission clinic. The midwife there asked me how the doctor planned for me to be induced at which point I burst into tears. I didn’t know that there were different ways to be induced, I didn’t want to be induced damnit. She was lovely and offered to find the doctor to confirm a few details so she could let me know what would happen on Sunday, in the meantime, she set me up on a monitor to see how your were coping in your watery world.
On her way to find the doctor, she found my midwife – the beautiful Donna. Donna came to sit with me as we were listening to your heartbeat. She was so comforting and soothing and was intent on making sure I felt OK. She regularly asked me how I felt as apparently I was having regular contractions, I couldn’t feel them, but they were happening – HOORAY. Oh my God, apparently you were going to try and make your own way in to the world. I was so excited I really didn’t listen to any of the pre-admission or induction details.
That was around midday. All afternoon I kept wanting to imagine that you were about to be born but I was convinced that I was had dreamt that the midwives were monitoring real contractions. Not only was I uncomfortable, but I really wanted to meet the little guy who had been inhabiting my body for the past 9 months.
Finally, as I was about to go to bed at around midnight after some last minute nesting, the first contraction began. I wasn’t sure if it was a contraction and tried to go to sleep, but when another hit 5 minutes later, and then 5 minutes after that, I figured it must be the real thing. I didn’t know if it was the annoyance of the contractions or if it was the excitement that you were finally on the way, but I couldn’t sleep. I was adamant that didn’t want to spend too much time in hospital, so we spent the night, wandering (or in my case waddling the streets) until sunrise. By then I was exhausted.
There was no point trying to sleep, the contractions were only 2 minutes apart. Instead it was time for me to have a bath to try and relax. It was also time for your dad to go and get some sleep.
By 9am, and another few kilometers waddled, it was becoming difficult to walk through the contractions, it was nearly time to head in to the hospital. The contractions were about 90 seconds apart lasting for about 45 seconds. We collected my sister, your aunt and soon to be God Mother and in we went, arriving at the labour ward at around 10am. After monitoring both of us, the midwives suggested that we could have a baby that shift. My hopes soared – there was an end to it all.
At this stage the contractions were more exhausting than painful and I was desperately in need of sleep. The change of shift, at 3 in the afternoon came and went, and still no baby (or sleep). I hadn’t slept in more than 36 hours and I was convinced that a shot of pethedine wouldn’t be bad, in fact that me being physically exhausted would be more detrimental to your well being than the drugs would be. I am so sorry that I needed to add pethedine to your comfortable home but I really really needed to sleep. It is difficult to describe the effects of the drug, but it allowed me to sleep soundly in between contractions that were only a minute apart yet the contractions themselves lasted a minute and were over in the blink of an eye and I fell asleep again.
Unfortunately the pethedine relaxed you also and it slowed my labour. The contractions went from less than a minute apart to 5 minutes apart again. It was like it would never end. Finally my waters were broken and all hell broke out. I was having a baby – HOORAY! My concept of time is totally disjointed, but my discharge notes say that you were born within 45 minutes (it may have been 45 days for all I was aware). At 9.46pm on the 30th of January 2002, you were born – a beautiful baby boy.
This is you a minute after you were born, I reached down to give you your first ever cuddle, the best cuddle I have ever experienced. Welcome the the world my beautiful boy.
7 years ago seems like such a long time but it has passed in the blink of an eye. In that time we have had some amazing adventures, who knows what the next 7 years will bring? I love you more than words could ever describe and more than you could ever imagine. You are my wonderful little ‘Snugglepot’.
Love a very proud mum, your Mum