during labor you just know you'll never forget how much. you'll remember every single detail of your delivery because, shit man. ouch. & sometimes you'll say things like, "OMG, NEVER AGAIN!" & "OMG WHY DOES THIS HURT SO BAD!? WHAT WAS I THINKING?!?!?" & maybe even, "SWEET BABY JESUS, I AM GOING TO DIE!!!!!"
but then the contractions end, the pushing is done & the ring of fire has passed & you're left with pure perfection placed on your suddenly deflated belly. & you quickly start forgetting the past few hours of pain. memories get foggy & you (might) start thinking about just how awesome that was & how much you'd like to do it....again. & again. & maybe...again? OMG. have all the babies.
i've gone through the above 3 times- the most recently on 7.11.13 when cohen ezra decided he was ready to say,"what's up world?" so, before i forget eeeeverything (besides the pain- dear God the pain) let me write it down...
i woke up on thursday morning (40 weeks & 5 days) & felt absolutely nothing. except huge. i wrangled the girls & headed to my 11 o'clock OB appt & hoped that my internal would show the opposite of what i was feeling.
after slapping on some gloves & going on a date with my cervix, my OB informed me that i was 2-3 cm dilated, 50% effaced & my cervix was nice & soft. very sure of himself, he insisted that i would have the baby any day. in fact, probably tomorrow. i was doubtful but as soon as i stood up i realized that the sneaky man had stripped my membranes. actually, i realized that when he was all up in my business because it took him for-ever, but yeah.
despite his prediction that i'd go into labor 5 minutes from then, he went ahead & scheduled my induction for 7.16 (41 weeks 3 days) & sent me on my way. i took the girls to Dunkin Donuts & then headed home. we caught a snapping turtle (highlight of their day) & i put brynn down for her nap & started cleaning my house from top to bottom, just in case.
so many dishes. so much laundry. muffin baking. bag packing. etc etc.
around 3ish i noticed that i was having contractions. at first i wasn't sure because i thought i might just be cramping thanks to my OB appt- but nope. these babies were pretty consistent & they were a bit uncomfortable. never the less, i figured they'd stop (why did i think this!? who freaking knows.) & i'd be pregnant for the next 5 years.
by 4 o'clock i was positive that this was the real deal. my contractions were starting to hurt. a lot. & i'd have to stop & breathe through them. the girls were totally side eying me by this point & i was trying very hard to act normal. then my body started cleaning itself out. i won't go into detail- but yeah. clear sign of labor right there people.
for some reason i still thought i had plenty of time. the husband gets home at 7 so i assumed i'd be ok until then & we'd head out afterwards.
but at 4:15 i decided to text him & let him know that he should head home. i figured that'd give him time to get here, slop the pigs, corral the chickens & pack the car. i put a call into my OB & they told me to head straight to the hospital. ha ha. hilarious. no can do. i let them know that i was waiting on my husband & i should be there in a few hours.
i then gave the girls a bath & hopped in the shower myself. by this point (4:45ish) i was cursing myself for waiting. the contractions were coming one after another & they hurt like a bitch. the shower helped so i waited out about 5 contractions before drying off & getting dressed.
the husband got home around 5 ish & when he walked in i was gripping the counter & breathing through a pretty brutal contraction. i told him to hurry it up & while he got to it, i once again wrangled the girls & finished tidying up.
he hauled everything to the car & got the girls buckled in. i took 15 years to put on a pair of shoes (seriously guys) & breathed my way out to the car. by this point i was not a happy camper. my contractions were 3 minutes apart & they were super intense. the hospital is about 25 min from our house so i knew i was in for a fun ride.
so, just like with brynn i had the husband drop me off at the hospital first (6 o'clock) & then take the girls to his parents. he dropped me off at the front door & after breathing through another contraction, i puffed my way inside. the front desk lady looked terrified when she saw me & was really confused as to whether or not she should register me or send me right upstairs.
as she hemmed & hawed i kind of wanted to punch her. i felt bad but, shit lady. make up your mind. thankfully a nurse, at the end of her shift, on her cellphone & clearly headed out, came walking through the lobby & saw me. she quickly said goodbye to whomever she was talking to & took charge. she grabbed a wheelchair, told me to take a seat & started wheeling me to the elevators.
a woman & her daughter were watching & started calling out "Good luck!" thanks- i'll take it.
the nurse was a lifesaver. a particularly evil contraction hit as we got on the elevator & she reminded me to breathe through it & started going on & on about being on a wave & blah blah blah. usually i don't pay any attention to the stuff but it was perfect. i legit imagined myself in the ocean & i swear to God that contraction was the most bearable one i had all day.
we got upstairs & the nurses were waiting. i'm pretty sure i was the only laboring woman in the whole ward because it was so quiet. they quickly got me into a room & by this time i could barely talk. well that's a lie, i could say things like "SHIT! OMG this hurts! OMG, why?!" but i couldn't answer questions without breathing like a bull.
i went to the bathroom, got my hospital robe on & was directed to the bed. the on call OB was on her way but she wouldn't be there for a little bit so the nurse was going to check me.
6:30pm = 6 cm. she looked slightly worried when i told her i wanted an epidural (LIKE YESTERDAY!!!) - i still needed to get my IV in, get fluids pumping & all that jazz. my contractions were ruthless by this point & i was snotting all over the place. but i was trying really hard to breathe through them & not scream. just lots of moaning & "OH MY GOD!"'s
the husband got back around 7 & another nurse came in & got things started & then my OB showed up around 7:15ish. by this point my IV's were in & i simply couldn't stay in bed anymore. there was SO much pressure & i felt like i needed to push RIGHT NOW! i was literally on my hands & knees on the floor, breathing & crying through contraction after contraction after contraction.
my OB checked me again (7:30ish) & broke my water. she also informed me that the anesthesiologist was busy & they had called someone else in but it was going to be awhile.
i'm sure the look on my face was one of pure terror because she sort of backtracked & said, "well, i mean....we called him awhile ago so he should be here soon...."
at that point i just knew that there was no way i could do this. right? i mean, it just hurt SO bad & i was so tired.
& then around 7:50 the anesthesiologist sauntered in. omg, i don't think i've ever been so happy to see anyone in my whole life. i just started sobbing & saying, "thank YOU! thank God, thank YOU!"
after i signed my life away & was told to sit still through a couple contractions (are you for real dude?) my epi was in.
as i waited for sweet relief...it didn't come. in fact, things started hurting way worse & i felt like i needed to push. poop. push. WHATEVER! my OB came & checked me again. whoa- 10 cm & ready to go. no time for this epi to kick in, sorry lady!
WHAT?! NO! sweet mother of God, NO! you guys- i seriously thought i was going to die. i mean, i'm sort of dramatic when it comes to pain but i seriously thought it was the end. no way i could do this without an epi. IT CAN'T BE DONE!
no one cared. so i got flat on my back, the nurse shoved an oxygen mask on my face (probably the most annoying part of the entire delivery & i promptly ripped it off & was scolded) & i started pushing. it was now 8 o'clock. i pushed & pushed & pushed. i breathed & cried & made weird guttural noises.
& then it was time. i was told i needed to push HARD because his head was RIGHT there. come ON! push! so i did & SHIT! the ring of fire. it's real people. & it's a ring. of fire. really painful fire.
& i couldn't push anymore. it was like i'd hit a wall. the nurse said, "come on now, you can DO this!" & i replied, "NO! seriously you guys, I CAN'T!"
it was actually pretty amusing. i mean, i'm legit arguing with this woman.
regardless- i didn't have a choice. because my body didn't care. so i PUSHED. & his head was out. but they still needed his shoulders so they told me, 1 more. just 1 more bug push. & so i did. & then he was out & i felt such sweet relief. he was here. he was safe. he was crying. i was crying.
& then they put him on my chest & it was the best feeling in the whole entire world. one that i've been so blessed to experience 3 times now. just thinking about it makes me tear up.
he was perfect. so perfect. & he pooped on me. yesss. & oh, so perfect.
as i cried & fussed over him- the nurses & OB finished up. my OB delivered the placenta & checked me out. no rips or tears ::roundhouse kick:: & all systems were go.
the nurses took him & started doing their thing.
Cohen Ezra Bird. 7.11.13. 8:24 pm. 8lbs & 3oz. 21 inches long.
a full head of hair, a healthy cry, 10 fingers & 10 toes & absolutely perfect.
gah. after she'd done their thing, the nurse wrapped him up & handed him back to me. omg. i just couldn't stop staring at him. just....love, you know?
i nursed him right away & after another hour or so they came & took him & i shuffled my way to the bathroom to do my thing. hello mattress sized pad. hello squirt bottle. hello mesh undies.
afterwards we walked to our room & got settled. they brought him in again to eat & then i let them take him back to the nursery until his next feeding. & so on & so forth.
he took to his paci right away so there was a little bit of tearful frustration the next day when he wouldn't nurse- but a very kick ass nurse made it happen. we took the paci away & with the help of some glucose water he nursed away again. once we got back into a rhythm, things were so much better.
the girls came to meet their new brother on fri morning. they were...indifferent? slightly curious but not all that impressed. actually, it was pretty much what i expected from them. they were more curious about how he came out of my belly than about him being...him.
a few more visitors trickled in & out & i got to spend a few hours in between just soaking up his awesome baby goodness.
we were more than ready to go by sat morning. so they took him, did his circumcision (choices, choices people) & completed all of his testing. we packed up & headed home.
the husband dropped us off & went back out to go to a family cookout & pick up the girls. i quickly unpacked & put everything in it's place & promptly passed out on the couch with cohen for awhile.
my body is healing up nicely & i'm not quite as tired as i thought i'd be. i mean, i AM tired- but not bone weary- you know?
cohen nurses like a pro & i'm once again producing enough milk to feed 10 babies. i'm working on regulating that & also building a small freezer stash. i need to pump for relief around 3x per day so that goes into the freezer & as of today (7.23) i have 200 oz.
he's pretty chill. he sleeps well & when he's awake he rarely cries. he haaaates getting his diaper changed so he's pretty vocal about that. his bellybutton thing fell off last thursday & his circ. ring fell off on saturday. so he's all healed up & he got his first real bath on sun night.
he's already SO different than he was a week ago so i'm desperately trying to soak it all up.
nights have been pretty ok. we had a couple rough ones where he either wouldn't sleep (omg) or was a bit gassy but for the most part he sleeps in 3 hour stretches & once he eats he goes back down.
he's in our room- in our bed & i SO love falling asleep & waking up to him. his little milk breaths & scrunchy gas smiles make my heart sing. legit, yodel.
at his last appt (7.16) he was already above his birth weight & no jaundice. he has another appt this week & i can't wait to see what he weighs because kiddo can eeeat.
the girls have warmed up to him a bit. they think he's "soooo cute!" & they love giving him his paci. they've watched me change his diaper a few times & they were flabbergasted by his "equipment".
when he cries, they inform me loudly & whenever he nurses they declare, "the baby DRINKS MILK FROM YOUR BOOBIES!" yes, thank you girls. they love to say his name & call him "she". no matter how many times i correct them. he's a "she". that's that.
the husband was home all last week so that gave me the opportunity to rest up a bit since he took the girls on a couple day trips to the beach. the girls had a blast & i got to just sit. sweet blissful sitting.
i drove up to the beach on thursday with cohen & we got to hang out for a couple hours.
he went back to work this week & so far so good. for me, transitioning to 3 children has been much easier than the transition to 2. except for going out in public- that requires help so i have yet to attempt that on my own. the thought of wrangling all 3 of them is terrifying. specially since the girls are giving me a run for my money these days. i mean, 2 & 3 is cool & all but then again, not. you know?
but regardless. blessed. so, SO blessed. in those first few days after delivery (when you're hopped up on hormones & anything & everything can make you burst into tears) i was just...overcome with thanks. i have 3 beautiful & perfect children. i DO NOT deserve them or this life & yet i have it. seriously? kick ass. thank you so much, God.
& i could go on & on & on. but you get the gist.
we love him.