Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Labor Day

Today I'm celebrating Labor Day, since tomorrow is D1's birthday. Actually I spent most of the day, despite more or less regular contractions, convinced that D1 was going to celebrate her high school graduation in utero, while DOB's mom cut out VBS crafts and made arrangements for someone else to teach her class that night because she was pretty sure we were going to be in the hospital by then. She was right. (It seems that one of the key emotional signs of imminent delivery is the conviction that the child will never, ever, ever be born.)

DOB is probably trying not to remember since the process was, on the whole, more painful and exhausting for him than for me. Maybe if I hadn't insisted on counter-pressure on the back for every contraction he would have had an easier time of it. Anyway, I've never gotten to pull the "Yes, but I gave birth" line on him, nor has he ever apologized.

We apparently went to the wrong birthing class. We were the only ones who both made it through naturally and hoped to repeat the process one day, and we didn't have it that easy. According to our teacher, the next class all had four-hour labors and thought it was a breeze. Maybe she says that to every class.

Notwithstanding, I never did beg for painkillers. Maybe it's a Norwegian thing. In fact, I realized about halfway through that if I'd had an epidural I wouldn't be able to get up and, uh, attend to personal matters, as soon as I wanted to after the birth, and I was more horrified at the thought than ever. I'd far rather be in pain than be immobilized.

I did beg for a rest midway through pushing, but the doctor just smirked and said, "Oh, you can try to rest, but you're not going to feel any better until you get this baby out." She was right, alas.

But D1 did eventually decide she was willing to come out. She was absolutely silent at first, which worried us for a minute. I thought a scream was a necessary indicator of health. I guess she wanted to assess the situation before commenting. She waited to exercise her lungs until they were washing her up. Then she was quite certain she objected.

Enough of this kind of stuff. Later, if I get inspired, I'll see if I got any good strawberry-picking pictures today.

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