Monday, March 11, 2013

Seth's birth story

I never wrote it. . . ever. How did I never write my sons birth story?

I didn't cry when Seth was born. I didn't cry the four days that I was in the hospital being induced.

It never hit me at that moment that I was really, truly having a baby.

I wasn't supposed to have a baby that day. I wasn't ready. I went to my regular checkup appointment at 8 months and my blood pressure was through the roof. I was told to go to the hospital which is literally five blocks away from the clinic. . . so I walked. . . alone. . .and I didn't think anything of it at all.

I went into Labor and Delivery, the first time I ever was there, and I went to the front desk, told them what was happening and then had a seat in the waiting area.

And then it seems like it all happened so damn fast. A room, a bed, a doctor, calling my parents and Andrew and his mom...and then the doctor told me that I was going to have a baby that weekend.

I couldn't have a baby that weekend. I told the doctor that. I still had too much to do. I had to clean and buy stuff and we had to get an apartment....I didn't have a home for my baby....I didn't have a crib.....I had nothing for him really.

And I want to say that this is a happy birth story, but it's not. Not a lot of moments that mean things to other people mean much to me. I hated pregnancy, I hated hearing the news about Seth having Down Syndrome and then my brother passing away a month later.....I just wanted it all to be over and to meet my son.

I was supposed to meet my son January 12th. I was induced on December 13th and Seth was born on the 16th.

It was the worst hospital experience ever. Being induced is horrible. There are these chemicals being pumped into to your body to produce a state of labor that isn't natural. And it hurts....A LOT. A LOT more than normal labor should hurt.

I remember about 12 hours after starting pictocin the doctor came in and checked me "down there" and didn't say what they were doing and all of a sudden I felt a big whooooosssssshhhh. They broke my water. They didn't even tell me, they didn't even ask. I felt violated. I thought I had urinated myself....I really did. I was that ignorant.

So I stayed in state of not knowing what was going to happen to a state of pain and shock for the next two days or so.

I got an epidural when I was fully dilated and I started having bad contractions....never again. It doesn't work and I have had back spasms and problems since Seth was born. . . finally started to get better five years later.

There were a few glimmers of shine in this story. One nurse was insistent on meeting Seth, she wanted to meet my child that had Down Syndrome. I like to think that she loves someone with DS and that's why it was so special to her.

I had trouble pushing, Seth got stuck down there because of his low muscle tone. This nurse told me that her shift ended at 7pm and she would see Seth before she left work that night. Several pushes and a big pair of forceps later, Seth was out.

He was born at 7:04 p.m. and yes, she did get to meet him.

Seth didn't wail, didn't cry, he let out this sad little "whelp". Like a helpless dog. And I lay there wanting to see and touch my son and they whisked him away. That's horrible. That feeling. I didn't get to hold him til forever later, although realistically it was probably only a half an hour.

Originally Andrew was supposed to hold Seth first....the nurse thought differently, she handed him straight to me. And I could write some perfect story about how we bonded, but we didn't. I was too much in pain, too raw, too flustered and scared to realize what exactly had just happened. Four days of pain and no food and inducement and worry and a whole pregnancy of shitloads of was all too much.

And so I didn't cry. In fact I was preoccupied with my first Pepsi in 7 months and the first food in four days and the fact that there was blood everywhere and the fact that my brother in law came into the room when I was on full view of the world and that no one seemed to respect my privacy or feelings. I felt very used and disgusted. Birth was supposed to be my moment and it wasn't. And it was my first child and it was supposed to be beautiful and special and it wasn't. And it hurt. I hurt.

I had Seth sleep in the nursery that night and I had my first shower in four days and I bled and I realized I had been cut in places I didn't know were supposed to be cut or that I had even given permission to cut. It felt like another violation of me.

The next day was a Monday, Seth was born on Sunday, after I had gotten tons of rest and shower and food, I went to the nursery and got my baby and I brought him back to my room.

I took off all his clothes and diaper and counted his fingers and toes and saw every part of him. . . and I thought "wow, this is my son" and he looked at me. . . and I wish I knew what he was thinking, but I could only imagine it was "wow, this is my mommy". And I told him "hey, I'm your mommy and I'm scared and I've never done this before and so I'm sorry".

And so we bonded. Seth the imperfectly perfect child and me the imperfectly perfect mother. We may look like a mismatched pair to the rest of the world, but for each other we are like two pieces of the same puzzle. That puzzle may be missing a few pieces, a few pieces may be bent or have the picture rubbed off, but we fit together.


  1. You are much older than I am but we had our kids at the same age! someone gave me your blog link because that is why i started blogging... to find someone that has been where I have been and thru the same things!

  2. ahhh I feel old now!!! That's exactly why I people can read it and relate to my story. I know my story isn't perfect, but it's mine and it's part of who I am.