Our son Max arrived on Friday May 29th at 3:20 am. He was 6 lbs 2 oz, and 19 inches long.

As you can see from the last blog post (on 5/28), I’m going back in time to share with you everything that has happened over the last few days. So here’s where we left off…..
On Thursday night at 11:45 pm, I was having contractions and hooked up to the monitor in L&D the night before my scheduled C-Section when Charge Nurse Jenny sent us home. The contractions weren’t progressing enough to keep me. No amount of begging from my mom, Sean, or I could convince her that I needed to stay. Her parting words were 1) Go home and eat something before midnight (due to surgery scheduled for the morning), and 2) Come back if your water breaks or your contractions get worse. She had talked to the on-call Dr at Dr. N’s office, and they said I didn’t need to stay. Of course they did. Oh….and Dr. N wasn’t on-call anyway. Which is probably why he offered to do my C-Section that night, even if it was in jest. Nice guy, that one.
Mom, Sean and I headed home. We left our hospital bags in the car, just in case. I had half a blueberry bagel with cream cheese, and some apple juice at 12:15….in between horrible contractions. My mom continued to time everything on her watch. It was almost funny, because I would say “What time is it?” to let her know that the contraction was starting, and she would write it down. At one point, I asked her another question, she looked at her watch and said “it’s time for a contraction”…and just like clockwork, it was. Sean went upstairs to take a shower. We continued to time my contractions, and saw them gain in intensity…..and immediately they were 6 minutes apart……5 minutes apart…..4 minutes apart….3 minutes apart. For about an hour. I was walking around the house, in so much pain that I couldn’t sit still. Sat on the birthing ball to see if that felt better (our pricey Childbirth Prep class recommended that). I felt like I was being torn apart from the inside. Practiced some breathing. (Recommended by Childbirth Prep class). Didn’t help. Finally ended up leaning against the wall by our fireplace and cursing. I didn’t need a $200 class to teach me how to do that. Sean came back downstairs, and my mom went upstairs to take a shower. I was sitting on the couch in between contractions, got up to use the bathroom, was halfway there, and…..”What is that running down my leg????” Raced to the bathroom with my knees held together as much as possible, which immediately made me feel like a three year old. And what you’ve seen in the movies is all too true. The minute I sat down on the toilet, my water broke like it was Niagara Falls. (Side Note: In our new house, Sean bought leave-in toilet bowl cleaners for all of our toilets. They’re interacting with the chlorine in the water, or eating away the paint on the toilet pieces….or something…..but the point is that they first turn the toilet bowl water blue, then eventually it’s pink/red, then when you flush and it blends together, it’s green. This drives me insane. Why? Because for 9 months I have been hypervigilant about any little thing that could go wrong, and as many pregnant women do, I check to see that there isn’t any blood when I go to the bathroom. Well, for the first 37 weeks at least. And then after that, you’re always looking to see if your water breaks, or if this mysterious “mucous plug” comes out, and so on. Not easy to do if your toilet water is RED, or pink. So sure enough, as my water was breaking I’m thinking OH MY GOD, I CAN’T BELIEVE THAT IT JUST KEEPS COMING AND COMING…..AND COMING……..and OH MY GOD, THE NURSE IS GOING TO ASK WHAT COLOR IT WAS AND I’M GOING TO HAVE TO SAY BLUE!!) Ok….side note over. But skip to the next paragraph if you’re easily grossed out, because what I did notice is that my amniotic fluid was tinged with green, meaning there was meconium in it. I had heard on ‘A Baby Story’ that this could be bad. I’ve watched enough ‘Deliver Me’s’ to know that a baby shouldn’t be hanging out in there for too long with no amniotic fluid at all, so I knew we needed to book it back over to the hospital as quickly as we could.

So I opened the door of the bathroom just a CRACK, and yelled to Sean that I needed him to bring me a pad. NOTE: This is when I lost the last shred of any dignity that I had in this process…..at the moment that I was describing to my husband where to find the biggest pad available that I was storing underneath the sink upstairs. Or maybe it was when I had to attach the biggest pad available to my regular thong underwear because there was no way in hell I was taking the time to go upstairs to sort through my drawers for a better option.

Exiting the bathroom, I calmly said to Sean “Could you please go upstairs and let my mom know that we need to leave now?” Meanwhile, I’m calling L & D to let them know that I’m coming BACK, and that my water has indeed broken. TOLD YA SO.

Sean drove the three of us back to the hospital. This time, I was not a happy camper while checking in at the ER. When the lady informed us that we had to fill out the forms ALL OVER AGAIN because this was a SEPARATE visit, I told her that I was going to leak amniotic fluid all over her floor….but OK. This time they took me in a wheelchair up to L&D. Clearly, I looked like I wasn’t kidding.

Charge Nurse Jenny gave a little chuckle when we showed up again. I told her that I had eaten a bagel at 12:15. Ooops. She got me settled in my tres chic hospital gown (again), hooked me up to the monitors (again) and checked me to see if my water broke (TOLD YA SO). In fact, not only had it broken, but according to her it was “grossly ruptured”. I turned to Sean to let him know that meant it had broken ALOT, and not that it was “gross”. Then Charge Nurse Jenny said with a smile “Even if it hadn’t broken, I was going to let you stay this time anyway. But it looks like that won’t be a problem!”. And then she put a rolled up BATH TOWEL down there to stop the torrential flow of water. Yeah. No joke. Again…..dignity? GONE at this point.
The next hour or so was a flurry of activity. She wasn’t worried about the meconium and said the baby’s heart rate/activity looked great. But she said that we were going to have the C-Section as soon as possible. This 9:30 am bullshit was no longer on the calendar, and she was calling the Dr on call from Dr N’s practice to give them a little wake-up call. But apparently, they have to tag team C-Sections, so she was also calling Dr N because “You’re his patient”. HAH. HAH. HAH.

In a nutshell (to save you the gory details and preserve a tiny sense of dignity), I will give you the very brief version of surgery prep. Catheter in my uh-huh yep it’s there, IV in my arm, blood draws for cord blood donation and other surgery-related stuff, fluids in through IV, “preparing the area”, signing forms about what could happen in surgery and how I could die, anesthesia info, blah blah blah. Charge Nurse Jenny and her sidekick Nurse Debbie rocked all of these procedures. Explained everything in awesome detail. Didn’t make me feel stupid or like a huge wuss. Waited for contractions to pass before jacking me up with needles. And shared that Dr C was on her way to do the C-Section, but no one could reach Dr N….FIGURES.

Next thing I know, I’m in a wheelchair kissing Sean and my mom goodbye and being wheeled off to the surgery room. When I got there it was smaller than they look on TV. Super unfriendly looking and cold. Nurse Debbie had me sit on the table and lean in to her while Anesthesia Lady tried to get my Spinal in. Yes, TRIED. A few times. Nurse Debbie told me how to position my back, curve into a C, and had me literally curled up right against her as she talked me through it. It felt like someone was taking a big needle, finding the sorest muscle in my back, and poking it right through. But it felt better than contractions! And to be honest, I was so caught off guard by going into actual real-life no-shit this is not a joke LABOR that I didn’t have time to be freaking out about the “what-if’s” of surgery! Then Nurse Debbie told me I could take a look behind me at where the Dr’s were. And there they were in the window of the scrub room getting ready, just like on Grey’s Anatomy, but they were no McSteamy! And look who decided to show up to the party???? Dr. N!!!
Spinal was finally in, they layed me down, put the drape up (right by my neck…again, looks different on TV) and the Dr’s walked in. No pleasantries from Dr N. No jokes. Nothing. I just remember looking at him, realizing that it was now 3 am and that he needed to shave, and almost being able to see the outline of his pillowcase where it had been smashed into his face. Dear Lord, please let this guy be awake.
And the rest of this story, the BEST of this story, is Max’s grand entrance!

They brought Sean in, and he came to sit right next to me. He held my face in his hands and started talking to me, and immediately I was at ease. He kept his eyes locked with mine, spoke really softly, and absolutely carried me through those 30 minutes. Again, it was as if the world had been scripted perfectly for us, with my amazing husband knowing every last word that would calm me, every last touch that would help me to relax as the doctors brought our son into this world.
Everything went REALLY FAST. After less than 10 minutes, Dr. N said “You’re going to feel some pressure”, and I could feel Max move from underneath my ribs and out into the air of the operating room.
Immediately, we heard him cry. A loud, strong, amazingly beautiful sound that I will never forget as long as I live. He was HERE. He was finally, finally HERE.
They took him over to the bassinet in the room to clean him off and check him. I know that Sean asked if me if it was ok if he went with him, and I said “yes, please go with him”. Sean went to stand by our son’s side as the pediatrician looked him over. As quickly as he could, Sean came back over and brought Max to me.
I remember thinking that he has the sweetest face I’ve ever seen. He is the baby that I have waited my whole life for. He was exactly like we had dreamed him. Some of the nurses took pictures for us, and the feeling of Sean’s cheek next to mine, next to Max’s…..will be burned into my memory forever. Those first seconds of what it was like to be a family of three. Sean went with him to the nursery, where Max had his first bath, and they checked him out some more. He is absolutely perfect, very healthy, and had a 9/9 Apgar score!

Before I knew it, Sean and Max were with me in the recovery room. I had some pretty bad shakes during the surgery, and the meds they gave me were a little rough. But other than that, I only stayed in recovery for a brief while, and then went back to my room. Max’s Baubee was able to be with us and hold her first grandbaby, and the next few hours were just a whirlwind of being together and drinking in the sweetness of our first cuddles with Max.
And just like that….Sean and I became parents.
We are blessed beyond words. We are in love with this little guy beyond any expectation. Knowing that he is the best of both of us, the perfect mix that was created by the tidal wave of love that we have for each other, is the most awe-inspiring life transformation in this world.
We are so unbelievably blessed to have our little Max. On May 29th, 2009….our world changed forever.


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