Today, my little girl is 6. And yes, that is still just a little baby to the blind eye, but to me it's only closer to her leaving my wings and soaring on her own.
My son was born on the hottest day of the summer, my daughter was born on the coldest day of winter. Maybe that is why they are so polar opposite?
January 27, 2006. It was a Friday and my last day of work before going on Maternity leave. I had planned the following week to prepare for baby's arrival (cleaning, organizing, what not). (Come to think of it, was the bassinet even set up? I don't think so.) That next Friday was supposed to be my delivery date, as I had had a c-section scheduled. Long story short, I had had complications with my first birth, so a c-section was planned for my second as a precautionary. And I was fine with that. With my first birth, I would've killed anyone who mentioned c-section. I had had a detailed 4 page birth plan. That was back then, this was now. A c-section was perfectly fine with me. To be safe. (and sometimes I feel like I have to justify that I had a c-section, but listen, no matter which way you do it, it's still miraculous. And I stand by that.)
So, there I was at work, training in my substitute, finalizing things before I left for three months. There was so much to be done that I hardly noticed when I started having pings of pain every once in a while. After a few hours, my trainee, who was very observant (and a sweetie!), said, "you're in labor. Those pings of pain you're getting are about every 4 minutes now." "Ah, nonsense," I said. (or I might've said no way jose, or get outta town lady, or nahhhuuuhh.) "You should go home," she said. It was 2PM. I was scheduled until 4PM and I had too much to do.
At 4PM, I was still working and now those pings of pain started to get closer together. Like, every minute closer together. I finally left at 4:30PM. But I had to stop to get my son from daycare. His daycare was on the 2nd story. Walking up those stairs was a big feat, but I did it. And I kept a straight face through each contraction (at this point, I gave in and admitted I was indeed in labor).
I called my husband and mother and both met me at home. By 6PM, we had all driven to the hospital. Up to the 2nd floor, wait at the admitting station, fill out a form. I left to walk down the hall to go to the bathroom and I was crying all the way, I was in so much pain, when I ran into a co-worker. She grabbed my hand and rubbed my back. And I'll never forget that she did that. (The day I was leaving the hospital, I ran into her in the same hall.)
When we finally got a room, I was dilated to 4cm. Finally, everyone geared up for the operation. I cried. The doctor said, "why are you crying?"
The operating room was so cold. And I had on just a gown. Everything was kind of a blur. But everyone stood still through each of my contractions and one nurse let me grab her hand and squeeze. Her hand was purple when I let go. They let my body finish the contraction, held on tight to me to keep me still, and injected the epidural. I felt a shock and then went numb from my waist down. They laid me down, turned on the lights, put up a shield so I couldn't see them cutting into my womb and went about their way. When they cut me open, I felt a tingle along where they had cut open. I said, "I felt that." They looked fearful. Finally, one said, "what did it feel like?" I said, "just tingling." And then they went again working on getting that baby out.
At 9:20, my baby was pulled from my womb. And she was a beautiful. And I was lucky, because my husband had been at my side as they pulled her out. I think he got to cut the umbilical cord. After I said hello to her, they took her to be washed. I said, "go with them, to make sure she's safe." My heart rate started to go up. The nurse said, "don't worry, she will be fine." I fell asleep then. And awoke in a waiting room for people who have just been operated on. They had put leg gadgets on me, to keep my blood flowing. They would tighten my legs and then let go. After two hours of waiting, I could go see my baby.
And there she was. My baby girl. Born on the coldest day of the year. And such a little nugget, she was. At 6lbs, 11oz! (my son had been 8lbs 13oz)
And so each year on this same day, I think of that day.
***************Sad, but true, story: A few years ago, my computer crashed and I lost 20,000+, including all my baby photos. Except I have this one that was on my facebook: