Lily is more than 9 months old now so I better write this down now before I completely forget about the entire birth process.
# – This was taken last month when we’re on holiday in Perth. She loves her food!
On 18 February 2018 not long after dinner, I went to pee. When I wiped, I found myself looking at a bloody gloop on the tissue paper. I knew what it was, as it’s the most familiar sight to me. It’s the ‘bloody show’. While I dreaded the sight of it in my previous pregnancies, this time I was elated because I knew my baby was coming. She’s fully-formed at more than 39 weeks, fully baked as they put it.
# – This selfie was taken on 17 February 2018. What a whale haha.
I should have called my dad then to come pick Liam up but for some reason I didn’t think it was going to happen until the next day. How wrong we were….
We put Liam to bed as usual, and after that settled down to watch a movie together. It. Yeap, of all movies, I chose to watch last year’s most terrifying flick – It. In hindsight the movie had probably hastened my labour haha. Towards the end of the movie, I was curling my toes everytime a contraction kicked in. As the credits rolled, I told Gareth I think I needed to go to the hospital. We called my dad, told him what was happening and then left for the hospital with Liam still fast asleep at home alone.
I know what you’re thinking we probably should have woken him up and bring him along but it’s almost 3am. We had a plan in place. My dad was to drive to the hospital to get our house keys and then he would collect Liam from our house which was a 5 minutes drive from the hospital. It was the plan that made the most sense! It’s only about 15 minutes drive during that time of night so Liam would only have been left alone sleeping for at most 35 minutes?
Anyway, dad successfully collected Liam and I could finally focus on the labour. I eschewed epidural and gas because my labour with Liam was pretty straightforward without drug other than gas, as with the dear twins so I thought Lily’s would be the same too. Well, wrong. Turned out Lily just wouldn’t engage. She’s stuck somewhere above my hip and even when I was fully dilated in less than 2 hours….she just wouldn’t drop down! My blood pressure was hitting the roof and doc gave me an injection to control it.
In hindsight, I should have taken the epidural and probably I could endure the wait for Lily to engage? I was in so much pain with nothing to push and everytime I pushed my blood pressure shot up. Lily’s heartbeat also slowed down everytime I pushed. It was pretty traumatic, I’d tell you that.
After what seemed like an eternity I was ready to throw in the towel. I shouted at my obygyn to cut her out. He looked relieved upon my request. But it was like 4 something in the morning and they had to wait for the on-call anesthetist to drive to the hospital from her home which was 30 minutes away. Man, I was so crushed when I heard that! It was the longest 30 minutes I had to wait. My contractions were fast, furious and fucking hellish. With my previous pregnancies the babies were out pretty quick so I didn’t have to endure the pain so long but this time I was writhing for 2 hours plus (like level 10cm dilation pain) with a baby who’s not in a hurry fml
At last the anesthetist arrived, a nice well-spoken Malay lady. I asked her if she’s giving me an epidural and she said no, I was far too advanced in labour to get one so I’d be knocked out completely. I was very happy to hear that cause I just wanted to not feel anything anymore. I wasn’t prepared for a surgery so did not fast they had to give me some meds to stop me from vomiting. It’s funny how everything seemed extra slow when you’re in tremendous pain. From being rolled towards the operating room to being slid to the table under the lights, to breathing in the cocktail of bliss – everything felt so slow. I just wanted to die, not kidding.
Anyway, I breathed in deep, I guess my eyes closed and when I opened them, I found myself in a recovery room with warm air blowing up my nether region. I asked a nurse how’s my baby, she said she’s fine and waiting for me. I felt so happy. At last, we did it. I did it. My living baby, my rainbow. Lily’s here. I asked the nurse if she could bring her to me for skin to skin. She said I will get to see her later when I get to my room. I didn’t argue. I fell back asleep.
Later I was transfered to my room and they brought Lily in and placed her on my chest. She went to work at my boobs straightaway!
I was beyond words. She’s real! She’s real and she’s ours and she’s safe and healthy and did not need NICU time. Liam finally has somebody to play with!
# – Yeap, this is our baby girl!
The past 1.5 years I had been in a limbo, entangled in a messy web of grief, confusion, fear, disbelief, anger, and also joy, desperately clawing my way towards the end goal – giving birth to a full-term, healthy baby, in spite it all. Lily’s arrival was like a magic salve for all my pain.
# – 3.54kg of love :)
# – All the men I love with Lilypad.
And I finally did it. We did it, Gareth.