Monday, March 26, 2012

The Day I Became a Mom

 It was nine years ago that I became a mom. I was 25.  When Don and I found out we were pregnant it wasn't the joyful exuberant jubilation you see in the movies. We had been married for a little over a year and wanted this, but it just seemed really real, and very odd. I instantly started driving more carefully. Telling our parents was hard too because now it was evident that we were having sex.  I had a great pregnancy. I didn't eat whatever I wanted, but my downfall was Giant Roast Beef Sandwiches from Arby's, (daily) which is kind of weird considering that I didn't eat meat.  We knew he was a boy and we named him Parker, which was Don's grandmother's maiden name.  We were going to name the baby Parker if it was a boy or girl, so that was pretty easy.  Thankfully he was a boy, because as a friend pointed out, it is very close to Porker, and if the girl was heavy set, it may be a problem.
I took Lamaze class and planned for a natural drug free birth. We had been given the book Baby Wise which was the closest thing to an owners manual I can think of. I strongly recommend it. Don studied that book like it was our baby bible. By the time I had the baby, HE was showing me how to breastfeed.
My due date came an went and I tried everything to make this baby come out. I ate spicy food, walked, you name it and nothing helped until the doctor "stirred things up a bit", his words not mine.
Soon the contractions started coming. It was the worst pain I had ever felt. I tried every position I learned in Lamaze within 20 seconds and nothing worked. I was bent over a medicine ball and grew more and more annoyed with Don's need to scream out how far apart my contractions were.  I had imagined getting a little beautified before going to the hospital, maybe put on a little make up for the glowing after shot of the baby and me. In actuality, I didn't bother to put a brush to my hair.  After putting on my gown, which was like asking me to climb mount Everest, I laid down in the bed and didn't want to move.  By the time they checked me I was 3 pathetic centimeters. Seriously? I thought I was at 12.  It was at this point when I called Don over to me and asked him to lean in close. It was then that I apologized.  " I'm sorry that I am leaving you like this. I love you, raise Parker well"  He just looked at me, not sure to get a nurse or comfort me. I continued " this is it, I see the light, I'm dying"  And I swear to this day that I believed it, felt it and WANTED it. This birth was going to kill me.
I had made my peace with the world.  Finally the anesthesiologist appeared.  Any desire to go natural had dissipated and all I wanted was to be put out of my misery. Once that huge needle administered a high better than LSD I was cool. In fact a little too cool.  I couldn't feel anything and was even giggling, then sleeping, then giggling again. Against the nurses orders Don was feeding me ice chips.  Note* listen to your nurse, she knows what she is talking about.
When it was time to push I alternated vomiting with pushing thanks to the ice chips.
The doctor finally arrived along with a resident. We are always the couple who get the doctor in training.  Don always says " we are all about education" I say that in my manly Don mimicking voice which he despises.   Whatever, invite the entire hospital in here to look at my vagina.  The doctor said that my cervix had swelled to mass proportions and he couldn't get the baby out and we needed to have a c-section.  He had to deliver another baby and would be back to do the surgery.  To be honest, I was kind of relieved. The thought of pushing this baby, who more than likely had a huge noggin out of my body scared me.
By the time the doctor returned the swelling had gone down enough to push my cervix aside and vacuum our son out of my body. " PUSH WITH YOUR BUTT NOT YOUR FACE!" the doctor screamed. I felt like a rock star everyone was chanting my name, telling me I was great and finally after 10 minutes I gave the final push to become a mother.  The resident almost dropped Parker, but the doctor caught him. His cord was around his neck, Don was cautiously watching. Even after 22 hours, it all happened so fast. I was suddenly pumped, the adrenalin was electric. Finally Parker was screaming and placed on my body.  There are no words to describe that feeling. Within seconds my entire purpose had changed.  I was so glad I didn't die.
Finally I was holding the concept of a baby that I had been dreaming about for months and he looked nothing like I had expected.  More beautiful than words. He had a head full of jet black hair, chubby cheeks and a dimple right in the middle of his chin.  Whatever was going on around me or to me was unimportant.  I was alone with Parker in the world for a moment when I noticed Don. He took Parker from my arms and held him up to his face. Don started to cry and told Parker, " you are my best friend" I don't know why he said it and he doesn't know either, but it is what it is.

I didn't sleep for the next 24 hours. I was just too excited.  I wish I could have told myself to get over it because when we went home, the lack of sleep would take its toll on me.  On the first night we were all sitting on the kitchen floor at who knows what time in the morning crying. Each one of us.  Me wondering who thought  I could ever be a mom. Don wondering why the hospital let us take a baby with 0 knowledge on what to do with him when we got home and Parker crying because he had gas...but we didn't realize that.
I knew that this day had been a major game changer. Everything I thought I knew, I didn't.  In a single moment my purpose was clear and that was that my purpose was no longer important in comparison to his.


  1. LOOOVE this story of Parker's birth Noelle! You wrote it like it happened yesterday. ;) I knew most of it, but your perspective and recollection is so candid and wonderful. ( i know, I sound like my mom now)

  2. You've touched my heart yet again!