Monday, March 31, 2008

This day that year - III

March 31, 2006

4:00 AM

It's taken me a while to figure it out, but I finally realise that these mild cramps I'm feeling must be contractions.

8:00 AM

"It's started!" I announce happily to husband and mother. "Actually, it started about 5 hours ago."

"5 hours?!" The husband springs into action "Let's go then! I'll get the suitcase. Can you get to the car? Should I call the doc? Where are my pants? Where's the blue notebook? Where's my stopwatch?"

I am feeling strangely calm, but the husband does not quite appreciate my being so zen. He hops around timing my contractions as I have a light breakfast and take a shower.

"Come on! Let's go, let's go, let's GO!"

9:30 AM

"Everything's looking good," says the doc cheerily, giving me a friendly pat on the hip. "But it will take a while - you're only 3 cms dilated. So make yourself comfortable, I'll check on you later."

Now that we're actually in the hospital room, the husband and mother have relaxed somewhat; and we settle in to what looks like will be a long wait.

Every once in a while, the assistant doc comes in to check the fetal monitor. The contractions are getting stronger, but not by much.

Time appears to have slowed.

This is b-o-r-i-n-g.


11:30 AM

The assistant doc and a couple of nurses burst into the room.

"Lie down, please. We need to give you some oxygen."

"What? Why?" I am bewildered.

"Nurse, start an IV," the doctor barks. To me, she says, "The baby appears to be in some distress. We'll see if things get better with oxygen."

"But how, I'm not feeling anything! What is causing the distress? What's different? What do I need to do?"

I feel like I've forgotten how to breathe. My mom looks like she's going to faint. The husband grabs my hand and squeezes it.

"Just stay calm. It may be nothing. We'll just keep monitoring for a little while."

12.00 noon

The baby's heartbeat is way above normal. It appears my contractions, puny though they are, are still too much for the baby.

My main doc arrives. They rupture the amniotic sac and find that the fluid is meconium stained. Apparently the baby is so stressed out at having to be born that it's pooped itself.

We listen in disbelief as our doctor explains that in these circumstances we have no option but an immediate C-section. The danger to the baby is real and immediate.

Assorted forms are thrust in my face, and I sign them shakily. I am crying hard. I had played different birth scenarios in my head several times, but none of them had involved any possibility of the baby's life being at stake. My own, yes. But not the baby's.

Never the baby's.

1:05 PM

"It's a girl!" the doc announces over the baby's thin, reedy cry.

"She's ok, right? She's ok?" I yell, or at least try to. I've been given a spinal anasthetic, so I'm fully conscious, but it appears to have triggered a major shivering fit. My upper body is trembling uncontrollably, and my teeth chatter as I try to talk.

The husband, who has been sweetly crushing the bones of my left hand all through the surgery, unceremoniously drops it as he reaches out to hold his daughter for the very first time.

"She's fine," says the doctor "We got her out in time."

She proceeds to explain something about delivering the placenta, and how I'll feel something or the other, but I can no longer hear what she's saying. All I can see is the little pink blob that my husband is proudly holding near my face.

It's squishy, and pink, and loud, and look - I can see tiny fingers curled over the edge of the swaddling blanket.

"Hello, Moppet!" are my eloquent first words to my daughter before the tears and laughter come together and render further speech impossible.

Welcome to the world, baby girl!


dipali said...

Each and every delivery is always a miracle, isn't it, Candyfloss?

Mona said...

aww :)

Just Like That said...

oooooh....! you brought out those emotions very well, Candyfloss. Had tears in my eyes as I read "never the baby".

Moppet certainly livened up life from day one, didn't she? :-)

~nm said...

:) I'm sure no mother will ever forget the the details of what happened that day. Its been more than 4 years since I faced this day and I still remember every little detail.

Very sweet indeed!

Parul said...

Loved this post...brought back the memories from last year in quite a rush!!



Swati said...

Birth stories are always fun !! They feel like miracles :)

mnamma said...

A short and sweet narration Candyfloss! Loved reading your birth story!

DotMom said...

aw geez.. moppet gave you quite a scare, didn't she! But I bet she has more than made up for it. lovely narration.

Wunderyearz said...

A lovely post.........I literally was by your side through the whole narration.
And hey cool slide show too.Kisses to Moppet and love to Munch.
BTW when is her Bday?

K 3 said...

Great walk down memory lane! Thanks for sharing ...

Aqua said...

Awww. you got me a bit teary there girl. love how you told yr birth story. no melodrama, just a nice and succint narration.

love to the moppet. Wishing her a very happy belated birthday!

Anonymous said...

I was going through some birth stories and I thought I had put up mine too. Reading some stories make me shudder at the thought of having another baby. Well, mine was simple, no fuss absolutely. Let me start from the time I was pregnant. I got to know about it when I was in UK. I was new to the place and it was the first time I left home. I was longing for my family back in India. I was deppressed. When hubby would go to office, I would wake up from bed only by evening. THen I had my postgraduation exams coming up after 4 months..boy! was I tensed! I got my tickets booked and I was so happy to go back to my family that my hubby was annoyed.."how can you be so happy to leave me?"

Well, after a long tiring flight, I was back home and barely managed to close my eyes(jet lag), when my in-laws called up. They were annoyed that I am sleeping even after 10:30 in the morn when according to UK time it was only 6 am. I asked mom to make stuff that I craved for. She made them but soon cribbed about my cravings, it upset me so much that Ihave never asked anybody anything in my life from then! Then the other day,she told me she was going to prepare batter for dosa as my elder sis and her friend were longing for it.

Days passed and I was very tensed about my exams. I studied hard. It was those days when my sis was not not yet adjusted to my hubby(she still hasnt) and would keep teasing me by making fun of him. I dont know if it were my hormones playing up but I would react very badly to it. So much so that, I pleaded to her but she was not to listen. I would get so upset after arguing with her that one such night I peed in bed while sleeping. She argued even during my exams. I couldnt prepare well. When I would stop talking to her, mum would chide me by saying I shouldnt have come back if I didnt want to talk to her. After a few days, when I would forget all about the fight and become friendly with her, she would again start the same saga.

I was deppressed. Mum would find fault with everything I did. She would reprimand me if I put even one clothing of mine on odd days for washing but used to wash her clothes in machine everyday as she was working then. Then my results came by and I passed, it was a great relief. Then it was time for my hubby to visit from UK. I was excited. I went to my in-laws place and gorged on all that was made for hubby and me as a result of which I was slightly overweight. He left me at my place as it was time for him to go back to UK. My sis again started acting funny, she wouldnt like to take anything that I bought for for; she once switched off the table fan as it was bought by my hubby. And there I was looking after her toddler even during her night duties, cleaning his potty, running after him, feeding him bottle at night and so on. I begged my hubby to take me with him as I felt I wasnt wanted anymore in that house I used to call my own. He wasnt able to take me. I felt so deppressed that I wanted to commit suicide but didnt for the child's sake.

Within 2 months the squabbles got to such a point that I started starving myself most of the day just to teach them a lesson..but they didnt care. I kept lying in one corner of the room whole day. Then my ultrasound revealed that my baby growing was retarded and was below average weight. She had altered head to body ratio and also a cord around neck. I was shocked, i then started gorging on whatever i could lay my hands on, even my family was terrified of facing my hubby and in-laws. then the baby's weight grew but still a cesaerean had to be conducted. My hubby arrived on time for the c-section.

My sis was angry with me and she would take it out on mom. Mom in turn would come to hospital and scold me. I decided that my baby would never be a burden on anyone and I got up with those stitches to wash her cloth nappies when no one was in the room. This triggered off a terrible head ache as I had injection on spine. Then I went home andafter the sixth day started giving massage and bath to my baby myself. I would have to breastfeed her and one feed would take upto 2 hours or more. I had no one to bring me food and had to starve till evening inspite of food being prepared by mom everyday. Then after 3 months, I left for UK and no doubt the starving process continued. My in-laws chided me over my baby's weight.

Even now (my baby's 2 years old), my eyes swell up with tears when I hear from someone that they were being pampered when they were pregnant. This is all I had to say.

Maggie said...

Anon, I'm so sorry you had to go through what you did - at the hands of your own family at that. But take comfort from the fact that you have a beautiful baby who makes it all worth it.