Reflections on Motherhood and Life as a Doula

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Tribute to Dads - Slim's Birth Story

This is a great birth story from the husband of one of my favorite bloggers, Hybrid Rasta Mama.

My wife's pregnancy was hard.  Well, maybe not hard.  Weird.  Yes, it was weird.  She had a lot of unusual health obstacles pop up.  But this is no surprise.  Life is like that for her...weird obstacles.  However, she enjoyed every single second of her pregnancy and as much as I worried about her, I enjoyed it right along with her.

My wife was hell bent on having a natural birth.  She wanted it at a birth center but our insurance didn't cover that and we did not have extra money to shell out.  So, she was thrust into a regular OB/hospital environment.  To balance this, she hired a doula (who we both loved) and figured that at least she would have a shot at a natural birth if someone experienced in these matters could be there to advocate for her.  We created a beautiful birth plan and were excitedly waiting for the arrival of our little "peanut".  I could see the joy in my wife's eyes as she pictured this serene birth without all the extraneous medical garbage involved.

And then...week 39 of being pregnant hit.  Peanut wouldn't stick a head first landing and the OB was insistent on a C-section RIGHT NOW.  My wife was a mess.  She knew that the baby still had room to move.  She felt her turn head up, head down, head up, head down all day and night.  I was worried because I did not know much about baby birth positions but left it up to my wife.  She tried everything to get peanut to engage head first.  By week 40, the OB was threatening to have her arrested for not doing the right thing.  He stripped her membranes without her consent.  My wife was livid, in a panic, and praying hard.  She was also a contortionist doing crazy things to get Peanut to turn.  Week 41 came and Peanut locked into a foot breech position.  My wife accepted it.  I just wanted to have a baby.  I didn't personally care how it happened at this point.

March 12, 2009, 3:00am.  We are both taking showers and getting ready for the exact thing my wife dreaded most...the most medically invasive birth ever.  C-section time was scheduled for 8:00am.  We were both a bundle of nerves, my wife more so, coming unglued over everything.  We got to the hospital at 5:30am and reality hit.  Shoot - I'm not coming home a husband.  I am coming home a husband and FATHER.  Holy!  Whoa!  I about passed out.  Would I be good at it?  Would my baby like me?  What do I do with a baby?  Will I like being a dad?  To say the least, I was overwhelmed.

8:00am and the surgery started right on time.  My wife was pissed off (to put it mildly) but she was staying strong.  I had the camera set to video record and at 8:01 the first cut was made.  I was intrigued.  Wow.  C-sections are no joke.  They really cut you open yet it seems so small.  8:07am - Peanut was pulled out feet first in a wet, bloody, BEAUTIFUL mess!  I dropped the camera.  I think I heard her cry.  I think I yelled "she's here."  I think my wife said something.  I know she was crying.  I ran over to the baby, MY baby, MY DAUGHTER!!!!  Wow.  She was so small, so precious, so innocent, so pure, so a part of me.  There was never a moment from that point on where I questioned whether I would be a good dad.  I WOULD be a good dad.  This amazing gift deserved that from me.

Words cannot describe the feeling I got from holding my daughter moment after her birth.  The earth stood still.  No sound could be heard.  As I gazed into her eyes and she gazed into mine I knew why I was put on this be HER daddy.

1 comment: