I wouldn't say that life with a brand new baby is hard, it's just time consuming. I spend at least six hours a day staring at her little face. And really now, who can blame me? She's far beyond adorable, a real looker, much cuter than any of your kids.
Oh, you know I'm kidding with you. But I can 100% guarantee that she's not an ugly baby by any stretch of the imagination, and I'm sure at least a few of you have some gnarly looking newborns to contend with.
I've run the numbers, folks--I'm only speaking statistically. It's called the hard truth.
Anyway, I've had quite a few emails, asking me for a detailed account of the labor and delivery. I never realized the number of people who are interested by the ins and outs of my cervix, but apparently it's many, and I'm not about deny you the details. So without further ado, I bring you...
Maggie Moo's Big Debut: Part One
(James has dubbed his baby sister "Maggie Moo," and yes, you read that correctly, there are chapters.)
I'm really not sure if I've mentioned this or not, but my husband Jared pulls a couple of shifts a week at an alternative wellness center here in Maine. In addition to Jared cracking the backs, patients can access a naturopathic doctor, a massage therapist, an aromatherapist, a Reiki master, and an acupuncturist all under the same peaceful roof. It's kind of like a homeopathic super-store, or one-stop-quackery--depends on the way you view the universe I suppose. But either way you slice it, it's a place to whisper, like a library, or a church. Otherwise you'll drown out the wind chime/flute music, and that music's important, because dude, if I'm having a relaxing, out-of-this-world Reiki treatment, the last thing I want to hear is your fat ass mouth blabbing up and down the walls all about your new lasagna recipe. Save it for the parking lot, people--or the chiropractor. I hear he's really chatty.
So where was I? Oh yes, wellness center. Like I said, the wellness center employs an acupuncturist. She's a middle aged woman from California who has the slenderest of legs that extend up to her armpits. She looks beyond exquisite in cowboy boots, and may have been a supermodel in her former career. I'm too shy to ask.
A couple of weeks ago, maybe towards the end of September, when I stopped in to pick up Jared's check, the acupuncturist mentioned that she can induce labor in pregnant woman if they've gone past their due date. I was like, "Seriously? Well I'd like to set up an appointment for October 9th, I'm due on the 8th."
Let me back up here for a moment and let you all know that I had three goals or intentions for this delivery. 1) I obviously wanted to come away from it with a healthy baby and a healthy me. 2) I wanted to have a Vaginal Birth After Cesarean, or VBAC. James was breech, which necessitated a c-section, and it wasn't something I was interested in repeating. And 3) I wanted to go for a natural birth--meaning no drugs, no pitocin, no epidural, no fun.
So when the 8th came and went with no baby to speak of, I didn't call on my MD to induce me with pitocin, I went to my 11:30 appointment with the acupuncturist thinking, "Oh my word, what a thoroughly crunchy way to kick off an all natural birth."
The acupuncturist checked my tongue, and according to her, it was purple enough to deliver a baby. Well okay then! With that encouraging news, we began.
By 11:45 I was sitting in a very comfy chair, with needles sticking out of my neck, hands, wrists, feet, ankles, legs and ears, watching the river and the cars wiz by. By 11:50 the needles were hooked up to electrodes, which were hooked up to a 9-volt battery--you know, to really stir up my inner life force and such.
A half-hour or so later, the acupuncturist unhooked the electrodes and pulled out the needles. She placed a whole mess of needles in the lower back and had me lean forward against her desk.
She was like, "So basically, to induce labor I put needles in every single part of your body that's contraindicated during pregnancy. Are you feeling any contractions?"
And I was like, "No. No contractions, but I'm feeling something."
"Like what?" she asked.
"I don't know," I replied. "It's really hard to describe."
"Well try. Just tell me what it feels like."
And although I felt like a total, unadulterated douche bag, I obliged. "It's a windy, swirling feeling in my low back," I said, waiting for her to double over laughing at me.
But she didn't. She was like, "Good. That's your Chi and it's all stirred up."
"Like stirred up enough to make a baby fall out of my you-know-what? I am 3cm and 80% effaced you know."
And she was all, "Yes." And she sent us on our way.
Jared and I ran a couple of errands--went to bank, filled the car with gas, watched the ugly parade that is otherwise known as WalMart--and what would you know? Exactly one hour after we left the wellness center, light but regular contractions began to kick in. They weren't painful by any stretch of the imagination, but they were definitely noticeable and they were coming every fifteen minutes.
Jared and I headed home, and we did what any reasonable in-labor couple would do. We got in the car and drove 70 miles South to meet my brother-in-law and sister-in-law for dinner.
Whaaaaat???? My mother-in-law was paying. And I was hungry. And wanted an appetizer.
So, since the hospital is roughly 30 miles North of our house, we were approximately, mmmmm let's see, 100 miles from from my health care provider.
Did I mention that my mother-in-law was paying?
...To Be Continued