Where, oh where, did it go?
Declan was held safely in my mom's arms.
We decided long before he made his appearance to try a natural birth. Yes, that means no blissful epidural, no escape into painless peace. I wanted to feel everything, to see if I could do it. And feel I did.
But it was very beautiful. He was born in a birth center, with natural light flooding the room as I pushed with all my gut wrenching might. He had no desire to make an appearance, and clung feebly with both fists. I remember begging my midwives to tell me the pain would be over when he was finally born. I needed to hear that in order to make it five more minutes. This was before she decided my cervix needed a little tug and was rewarded with a bite. I bit her like I've never bit anyone, I couldn't stop myself. Her boyfriend saw the teeth shaped bruise and was quite amused when she told him one of her mothers bit her. Someone even had the presence to take a picture at that precise moment, thus making the memory live on forever. I would post it, but I happen to be very nekked.
Drake was two full weeks overdue, and Declan was also hanging in there attempting to top that record. Just like Drake a NST showed he was no longer "thriving" and needed to be given a little nudge. Apparently I have a very comfortable uterus. They decided that breaking my water would be the most natural form of induction, and I was game. I have never seen such a creative use for a crochet hook. Maybe that explains my aversion to the craft. It worked however, and threw me into almost immediate labor. A labor my midwives assured me would be very quick as my cervix felt very "ripe." I've never been more proud of a body part.
They were wrong though. It was a full 13 hours later that my uterus finally decided it'd had enough, and Declan was thrust out into that bright, beautiful room. The relief from pain was immediate and I was in awe as I saw his downy covered cone-shaped head, his fists tightly clenched, his legs quivering in indignation. Only then I realized he wasn't breathing, and was making no attempt to do so. He didn't want to cry when nudged , or even when given a much firmer one. I remember asking over and over if he was okay, if he would be okay. They started to get that panicked look, and moved around frantically getting out the oxygen and giving him light slaps to the bum. He finally made a weak kittenish sound, and started breathing. He didn't give a full cry for an entire week.
I was so amazed at how great I felt. I could walk!! I could move around without pain!! I still looked 8 months pregnant, but who cares, I felt great! I was in the shower about an hour afterwards and eating lunch not long after that. It was then I started feeling those pesky cramps again. I thought that was over with? And then a huge gush ,which when I looked down, discovered was blood. Blood everywhere. I was having massive hemorrhaging. My midwives quickly cleared the room and got down to work. An entire hand was shoved up into my nether regions only to pull out blood clots the size of which I'd rather not remember. That may explain why I then promptly passed out cold for 15-20 minutes. They broke stick after stick of vile smelling things trying to get me to come to. I refused. I also continued to bleed an enormous amount. They lost count how many liters I was down. An ambulance was called and I was wheeled briskly away while being talked to, yelled at, poked, and prodded. At one point I had five IV's and had the marks to prove it for weeks afterwards. Apparently when they are trying to save your life they don't care so much about being gentle. I also at this time conveniently decided to have a seizure.
To this day, they still don't understand what happened. I am a "medical mystery." Got to love that title. My blood levels were so out of whack the doctors kept running them to make sure they really were what kept printing out. A transfusion was ordered. The color of my face blended in quite nicely with the white sheets.
And then magically the next day I was fine. My body decided it'd had enough playing with the doctors and decided to shape up. I didn't need the transfusion after all. I did need iron pills for a few months to help out, but I didn't have any lasting effects.
We took Declan home from the hospital he wasn't born in and were amazed at the little creature. His hands were huge, they looked like they should be attached to a two year old. His long toes curled under when you would caress his feet. His hair was soft, shiny, stick straight. He smiled in his sleep if you rubbed his belly, and couldn't resist rubbing those long fingers with razor fingernails all over his face. He still does that.
This past year has been one of the most delightful of my life. Drake simply adores his little brother, and the same goes in return. Declan's eyes light up when Drake comes into a room, his face breaking into a grin. He has such a mischievous smile, accented with a dimple in one cheek. His front teeth came in, huge for his little face and with a perfect gap between them. He caresses my arms when I'm putting him to sleep. He's perfect.
I had no idea a year ago what he would be like. Would he be just like Drake? Would he look more like me or the hubby? All we knew at the time was that he had a penis he was very proud of and he liked to sleep during the day and kick at night. Now we know he has a great sense of humor. He has a grin to greet me every morning as he attempts to head dive off the bed. He has no fear of hurting himself, yet is very timid with new people. He is his mama's boy, and yet he loves his daddy like no other.
He was worth it all. We love you peanut.