“Monday’s child is fair of face,
Tuesday’s child is full of grace…”
The journey to Tuesday morning was a long one. I didn’t talk too much about my pregnancy on my blog because it would have been a lot of complaining. I was hot, tired, uncomfortable, swollen, worn out, and just crabby in general. I had an irritable uterus that liked to have contractions, and I was plagued with worries and anxieties, both my own and Bip’s.
And yet the baby and I were healthy and my pregnancy was uncomplicated. So really, what was there to complain about?
And I was fully aware that many women would gladly suffer through such a pregnancy and worse, but are unable.
So I kept my complaints to myself. At least here. At home, not so much. I don’t suffer in silence well at all. Yet, my family suffered me the whole time.
The day I reached 37 weeks was a stressful day for me, which triggered uncomfortable contractions all day. I was officially at term, but not due for another 3 more weeks. Not a good place to be.
At 38 weeks I was more than ready to be done. I tried very hard to trust God and His timing. But my prayers sounded like this: “Please, please, please, let the baby come soon. ”
At 38 weeks and a few days, my mom arrived to provide support and childcare. We counted off the days as they passed.
39 weeks and I was 50% effaced and 3 cm dilated. More days passed. I hung on only because I knew I wouldn’t be pregnant forever.
Monday afternoon my water broke. Still the journey wasn’t over.
My previous three births went quickly – 2 hours, 1 hr and 15 minutes, 1 hour. Water…baby…birth – just like that. This one, not so much.
Hours passed, 14 in fact, with only mild to slightly uncomfortable contractions. I was dilating enough to keep my midwife happy and I was in no real pain, so I was content.
Around six in the morning my contractions needed concentrated breathing and relaxation techniques to manage. I got in the tub and stayed there for a while. After a time I got out and Phil and I did the labor waltz, where he holds me and I grab him by the belt loops, head pushing into his chest and I try to breathe.
Then I got back into bed in order to better rest between contractions. Somebody helped me move my leg. The pain became excruciating, somebody grabbed my hand, the one not clutching Phil’s. I pushed with all the strength I had left, through the pain, through the encouraging voices. I pushed again and heard Phil tell me that the head and shoulders were out. It was 7:31 am.
Our son was lifted out and laid on my chest. He cried and I loved him instantly.
The journey was over.
And another one begins.