I’m antsy today. Restless. Unable to sit still, bouncing my leg, finding reason to pace the office.
Amusingly enough, I woke up the same way fourteen years ago. It was a Saturday. We only had one car so I was stuck at home while TheEx was at work and I couldn’t STAND it. I was going crazy in our little house. Laundry was done. The bathroom was clean. I had scrubbed the walls and baseboards and floors…by hand…a couple of nights before. So I decided to walk the mile or so to my mother’s house. Not a big deal until you realize that (a) we weren’t on the best of terms because (b) I was 9 months pregnant.
I don’t remember much of what we did that Saturday. I do remember laying on her bed and knowing – KNOWING – I was going into labor within a matter of hours. I know she took me home that evening, that TheEx and I had loaded baked potatoes for dinner and then headed to watch a movie at the house of one of his friends.
We didn’t finish the movie.
My memories of that evening are patchy at best but what I DO remember is quite vivid.
- For some reason my brain decided “The Ballad of Curtis Lowe” was the most appropriate song to play on repeat for hours on end. I didn’t even particularly LIKE the song (although now I have a soft spot for it) but that was unintentionally my labor soundtrack of one song.
- I was determined to have a natural birth and argued vehemently with the nurse who insisted I needed an IV of pain meds. We “compromised” and she gave me half the minimum dosage. She later commented on how MUCH if affected me. I wasn’t exaggerating my lack of tolerance to meds and I was STONED.
- I remember giggling to someone (either my oldest friend or my sister) “I’m warm and fuzzy and I LIKE it.”
- I tried to convince them to sneak me a doughnut & orange juice – using a less than quiet “whisper”.
- I made the conscious decision NOT to cry out or make any noise because my teenage sisters were in the waiting room and I didn’t want them to hear me and get scared. Then I yelled at my mother to “GET THE BLEEP OUT OF MY FACE”. She will never forgive me for that and will quickly point out that she was the ONLY person at whom I yelled…or even snapped. (I would just like to note she was also the only person that kept leaning into my face.)
- I also told my mother at one point that I was done; I didn’t want to “dothis anymore” and to tell them I wanted a c-section.
I was in labor very little time. We got to the hospital around midnight…maybe ten…and he was born around eight…maybe…six…? Time is one of those fuzzy details. In the end it doesn’t matter. The doctor told me “one more push” and then yelled because he didn’t mean it but I did and suddenly there was a baby to catch.
Eight months earlier I looked my doctor in the eye and told him my child was due on May 25, 1997. He disagreed and for 8 months we regularly argued over whether “the most hyperactive baby he’d ever seen” would be born the end of May or the first week in June. It became a standard part of office visits. On May 25, 1997 I proved that a mother’s intution can trump medical charts but since he stubbornly clung to said charts, he was on vacation and I didn’t get to gloat. At least not immediately.
Fourteen years ago I was prepping to give birth. Today I am mother to a young man that sounds like an adult on the phone, who has discovered how much fun it is to kiss his girlfriend and who will officially be fourteen tomorrow.