The night before surgery my dad took me out for my "last supper." I was acting calm but inside I was seriously freaking out. This was going to be the biggest day of my whole life. Bigger than getting my driver's license, graduating high school, turning 21, graduating college and getting married all rolled into one. I was starting to think Brian and I had bitten off more than we could chew. What if I didn't like being a mom? What if I wasn't good at it? What if Brian thought he wanted kids until he had one and then decided he didn't and left me? And the usual fears of surgery like what if he doesn't realize my anesthesia didn't work and starts cutting me open and I feel the whole thing?!? I was so scared that I actually wished for time to stop so I could stay happily pregnant and looking forward to the future forever.
But time didn't stop and we arrived at the hospital at 5:45 Friday morning because no matter what happened the baby had to come out of me one way or another. My mom took this last bump pic of us.
After changing into a hospital gown it was time for my IV. Nurse said she didn't see any veins on me and wrapped up my arm in a warm towel to draw them to the surface. Then she poked me. Then poked me again. And again. And again...and then she apologized. "It's ok", I said. "At least it's over." But it wasn't. Oh no. Not even close. She said the vein blew and she tried again on 4 different places before calling someone for help. I tried to imagine myself at my favorite beach on Grand Cayman but it was hard to maintain any kind of Zen-like trance because all I could do was wonder if the surgical team was as good at their jobs as this nurse. I now have 5 bruises on my hands, wrists and arms. I didn't know it then but the IV incident ended up being the worst part of the day.
There were about 8 people in the OR. It was a pretty small room with lots of bright lights. I had on booties and a hairnet. I had to go in by myself to get my spinal while Brian got dressed. The anesthesiologist was great. He explained everything he was doing and described exactly how it would feel. I had a surgical tech on each side of me. They were kind of like hugging me and telling me I was doing great and that the hardest part was almost over. P.S. The spinal block was nowhere near as bad as the IVs.
After that they sent Brian in in his jumpsuit, hairnet and face mask. I was so happy to see him I almost cried but somehow I held it together. I knew that if I freaked out I would be put to sleep and I definitely did NOT want that. Brian played the role of supporter perfectly. He knew just how to touch me and just what to say to keep me calm.
I thought that the spinal block would numb me completely and that I would feel nothing at all but this was not the case. I could feel things and I could even wiggle my toes. I asked the anesthesiologist is that was ok and he told me that the surgery had already begun. He said they gave me a test cut and when I didn't respond to it the dr went ahead and started. So that part thrilled me! I could feel a lot of pushing around inside of me. It felt very similar to the baby's movements but much stronger which makes sense I guess since it was a man's hands in there and not a baby's.
It seemed like only 5 minutes or so went by when a man on the other side of the curtain yelled, "And we have a baby boy!" Everyone clapped! Brian jumped out of his seat and looked over the curtain. "Honey, I saw him! I saw him come out!" He was SO excited! I have never seen him that giddy before. He had tears in his eyes and gave me a kiss through our face masks.
Everyone seemed to be talking at once. Butt first. What a beautiful little boy. Looks like his daddy. He's a small one. Congratulations, mom and dad. I listened to everything going on around me. I was so happy I felt like my whole body was shaking. And then I heard him cry and it was the sweetest sound I've ever heard.
Brian went over to the crib to watch Ian's exam. He was so giddy! He kept taking pics on the camera and running back to show them to me then running to Ian again. Before I knew it Brian came around the curtain with my baby boy wrapped up in a blanket. One of the techs took pics of the three of us. They put Ian next to me but I couldn't touch him. Then a nurse said it was time for Brian and Ian to head to the recovery room. It didn't take long for them to finish me up. Thank goodness because I couldn't wait to get my hands on that baby!
I didn't think this experience would be as special as it was. I thought it would be scary. I thought I was missing out on something. I figured the surgical team wouldn't really care about another baby being born since they deliver babies everyday. But I was wrong! I felt no pain. I don't feel like I missed out on anything at all and there was tons of celebrating going on in that OR and there would be more celebrating to come. It was only the beginning of the most amazing day of my life!
Here's my little Bub. Ian James. Born June 3, 2011. 7:39am. 6lbs, 1oz.
Look at that smile!
Look at that smile!