Sunday: That morning I had our respite worker watch both Noelle and Dryden while I ran around doing errands for four hours straight. It felt good to get out and get stuff done solo, while taking my mind off being large and uncomfortable and ever pregnant. I was pretty satisfied to scratch everything off my list and head home to relieve Jenna. After both kiddies were stuffed with soup and goldfish crackers and tucked into bed for naps, I sat down to decompress. I texted my sister-in-law Marie and lied to her- telling her it was "baby time." I got a good chuckle out of her excited reaction, and laughed even more when I busted her bubble and told her I was joking (apparently I am easily amused by sheer asshole-ness.) 20 minutes later, I felt the tell-tale, gut wrenching jolt of a contraction. Well played Karma. Well frigging played...
The contractions stayed 10 minutes apart all day and into the early evening. A call to the hospital at 9 pm directed us to come on down and have me assessed. We (who am I kidding? I was sitting on the couch with my feet up drinking my last Pepsi for a very long time. This was Nick's role in "Baby Time") plucked the confused, yet excited, kids out of their beds and shipped them off to Nick's parents' for the night. I placed a quick phone call to my mother, who assured me that this- my third delivery- would be rapid compared to the others. Shit, I just might pop this baby out by midnight!
I did not.
The contractions stayed 10 minutes apart all night. They gave me a shot of something to help me sleep- I didn't even pretend to care what it was...I waved off the explanation and pointed to which cheek I wanted the needle in. Nick went home to sleep in our bed instead of curled up in the fetal position on the awkward half bed provided for him. They turned the lights out in my room and that's was my Sunday.
Monday: I started my day with a breakfast of (pregnant) champions: weak decaf coffee with no cream, water, pineapple juice, and orange jello. Crap, even last night's drugs couldn't make that appealing. My contractions were still hovering at that annoying 10 minute mark; too far apart to be effective, and yet close enough to be painful and tiring. At 10 am my OB/GYN came into the room and told me that they were sending me home. They anticipated a busy day in the maternity ward, with four babies slated to enter the world so... would I mind coming back in on Wednesday to be induced? Fak. What was I supposed to say? I considered the effectiveness of throwing a fit and refusing to get out of the bed but, in the end I just shrugged and said, "ok." The doctor wanted to preform one last exam before sending me home to endure two days of contractions every 10 minutes (thoughtful of her) so I shimmied my ass down to the end of the bed while I texted Nick and told him the news. Fate took pity on me- the doctor accidentally broke my water while examining me. I tried very hard not to look smug while I texted Nick and told him the new news; ready or not, today was the day.
My smugness dissipated rapidly when the contractions really kicked in a few minutes later. Wednesday was starting to look like a better idea...I texted Nick (who was on his way back to the hospital) and told him that I had changed my mind and wanted to go home instead. When my nurse, Ellenor, came in to check on me at 11am, I asked her about an epidural (actually, I asked for it like I was ordering from a menu: "Ellenor, I'd love to have an epidural please. With a side of garlic mushrooms.") She said that sounded like a lovely idea, and she'd get right on that immediately after examining me. *disclaimer* For any of my friends who have not given birth yet: being examined internally by numerous people during labour is normal. You might think that this would be embarrassing or invasive, but I can assure you, at that point, you really don't give a shit if the janitor himself came in to check your v-jay-jay. Hell, maybe some WD-40 would speed things up...
"Um, actually dear, you are already 8-9 cm dilated. You don't have time to have an epidural. I'm sure you'll probably do just fine without it dear." That Ellenor, a true voice of confidence and reassurance. Double Fak. I tried my best to endure in silence- whimpering only at the worst contractions. I stole a trick from a friend; doing math equations in my head during labour pains. Sounds stupid- but it is genius! Factor in that I'm god-awful at math and you have hours of mental distraction. Seriously though, it saved me- thanks Gina. Somewhere along the way, my unsuspecting husband arrived, more than likely expecting me to still be in the earlier stages of labour. He came to the side of the bed and asked what he thought was a seemingly innocent question: "How are you feeling?" It was a this point that I sat straight up in bed, my head twisted a full 360 degrees, and I commanded in a demonic voice for him to go sit down in the corner. Suddenly, an old priest burst in the room and sprayed me with holy water, screaming "the power of Christ compels you! The power of Christ compels you!" Seriously weird and inappropriate in a maternity ward...
The doctor and nurses were gathered around, waiting for me to start pushing. Nick was hiding from me in the ensuit bathroom- afraid that I would eat him. A nursing student- god bless her- leaned in and said "Rachel, how are you feeling?"
Side Note: During the delivery of our first born, Noelle, I started the day with a very young nurse. I don't quite remember what happened, but I made her cry. And I got a different nurse for the rest of the delivery.
Keeping this in mind, I reined in my bitchiness and replied, "I'm just peachy-fucking-keen thanks." The rest is kind of a blur- I zone out during the pushing phase of birth. It's like being stoned; present and aware but stuck inside my own head. It's how I deal with the pain. I pushed for 10-15 minutes and was rewarded with a perfectly pink little girl. As I was giving birth, one of the nurses yelled at Nick to come watch, that he was missing the best part. I hear him yell back from the ensuit, "No, I'm good here thanks." I can't say that I blame him really. He sucked it up and came out to welcome his daughter into the world (but he stayed out of striking distance from me though.) Raegan Elizabeth Pomainville was born on January 23rd at 11:40 am- a perfectly sunny winter day to start her life.