Bent Words

Bent Words

January 14, 2020


At my 9:30am OBGYN appointment, my doctor looked me over carefully while listening to my accounts of the previous 3 days. Headache which would not dissipate with over-the-counter relief options, limited and interrupted sleep and an elevated blood pressure. I tried to explain that I knew it was due to a lack of sleep but, once she read over the results of my screening for the day, I could see it in her eyes as she squinted at me with decision – we would be inducing labor. I just didn’t expect for her to state it would be today, at noon! However, this is exactly what we’ve been preparing for with all the baby biophysicals. We needed to get to 37 weeks, we were looking for consistent signs of fully developed lungs (as seen on the ultrasound, the intake and expulsion of amniotic fluid), regular coordinated movements and a heartbeat that was able to self-correct.

So, multigravida of advanced maternal age in third trimester with pregnancy induced hypertension.

Time for this old lady to pop out a puppy!

It was 10:30am so getting to hospital by noon was a bit of challenge since I really wanted to wrap things up at work, spot clean my home and eat something prior to the madness but mostly I just was able to load up Old Blue and yell at my husband to hurry up in the bathroom. I called all the people – my Mom to watch the Big One, my mother-in-law to watch the Little One and my co-workers to explain my absence – and packed all the things.

Noon @ Elmbrook

“You look familiar,” said the nurse as we exited the elevator in the Maternity Ward.

“Well, I’ve done this a couple times before,” I replied with a grin.

“Kristine?” said Kevin.

“Yes! And you’re Brad’s brother, right?” She replied.

My husband knows and remembers everyone. All our neighbors and the names of their children as well as the names of their pets. I just wave stupidly most of the time while he asks Lee and Marge about their 11th grandchild and how they are fairing after suffering a minor fall. It’s ridiculous. But it’s also pretty awesome to see all these familiar faces in the hospital where all our kids were born. Sandy gave the Big One her first bath over seven years ago. Kristine was at my brother-in-law’s wedding when Avery was only 6 weeks old. And it seems like yesterday that Melissa had her fist in my business to check for dilation with the Little One.

So we felt at home.

My BP was still high so we got the party started with a little cocktail bag full of Pitocin and a 3cm dilation station head start. We started slow because of how quickly I progressed with the last Little One. Of course, getting to 4cm took like two hours but once I got over that hill, I went to 8cm in a finger snap. And after that, I just wanted to push. Of course that’s when the nurse turns off the Pitocin because my doctor insisted on being present so they told me to just stop. I completely stalled out losing all sight of contractions. While we were waiting, I had some dude in scrubs (1 of 10 kids) staring at my opened legs ready to catch, “just in case.” The nurses, too, were standing around with their arms crossed, trying desperately not to look at the clock.


Sorry people but YOU turned off the go go juice, not me. I was ready to rock and roll and now I’m just gonna sit here and do NOTHING to spite you. HA!

Which was actually just wonderful because my doctor was able to arrive in time for us to resume the normally scheduled programming. Pitocin re-started and pushing commenced. Let’s do this thang!

I watched the progress in the mirror and it was just about the best thing to see this little human make its way into the world. Nothing else mattered at that point. The baby was making its way to me and I could feel the downward pressure getting closer and closer to extrication station.

“Uh oh, looks like we have the cord wrapped around baby’s neck,” said Doc.

Unfortunately, this made me stop everything and lose all focus. As soon as I felt another contraction, however, I started pushing without giving any notice and no one was ready. I couldn’t help it. All I could do was to push violently to make this tiny one get out and get some fresh air. I pushed and pushed and didn’t stop growling until Doc grabbed baby’s head and heaved while I bared down.

All I saw was a purple mass that wasn’t crying or moving.

They put baby on my chest and rubbed baby’s back with a towel to get some movement going. NOTHING. I thought I did something wrong and that maybe the cord wrapped around the baby’s neck was really worse than I could have imagined or that I should have stopped pushing so they didn’t have to pull the head like they did so when they said that everything was fine, I just grabbed the little naked bundle with purple skin and held it close to my face.

“Okay, Laura, here you go. Go ahead and cut the cord and then you can tell us if we have a boy or a girl,” said Doc. She handed me the scissors and I damn near dropped it on the poor thing I was so shaky but it was AMAZING getting to cut the cord. As soon as I was done, I turned the little body over and shouted, “it’s a boy!!!” I damn near dropped our baby at that point I was so overcome. “I have my little boy! DOC!! You made me think it was a girl this whole time!!”

She laughed. It was the hardest thing in the world for her to keep such a secret when all I did for every appointment was mention that it would be so amazing to have a little boy but that’s okay because it’s a little girl and we have all the clothes and know what to do and SOMEHOW, here we were, WITH a little boy the whole time and she knew!! I ugly cried for hours after this and showed him off to everyone, Lion King style. I have continued this with every doctor’s visit (daily since he has jaundice right now) and will continue for a long time to come.

Of course I would have loved another little girl just as much but it’s a miracle to be able to experience both.

I have a son.

And he is freakin’ awesome.

But, Little Buddy, just so you know, girls are great, too. We cry a lot because we love a lot. Our feelings are easily hurt because we try so damn hard. We expect great things but we intend to give you all the generosity, adoration and applause you deserve. You’re going to see all this with your sisters and your smokin’ hot momma but I wanted to let you know now. And I will write to you again a little later. Every year on your birthday I will take some time to tell you what’s up and hope that someday you might understand a little of what I desperately want you to know. So many things to tell you about… But mostly it just comes down to how entirely loved you are. Through all of our losses, through all of our travails in creating you, through all the days that I hoped I would meet someone as handsome as you, I am NOT disappointed and I wouldn’t take a second of it back.

It was so worth it to meet the man of my dreams.

Written at 4:12 p.m.