Exactly two weeks ago, I was sitting in our living room, much like I’m doing now, (over)eagerly awaiting something to happen. I had spent the better part of the previous night up with contractions, and having had so many Braxton Hicks before, I was certain that by the morning I would be going to hospital. To still be sitting at home at lunch time was, quite understatedly, a disappointment. Still, it was Father’s Day, and as much as I had really hoped that Andel would be able to celebrate it as a father, I couldn’t let my emotions not let me celebrate my own father. So, as planned, we went to Papu and Yaya’s house for tea, to be followed by dinner.
By the time we sat down for dinner though, those contraction-like movements were back. I couldn’t tell how long they’d been back for (surely, if they were the real thing, I would know?), but started taking notice when they got progressively closer together – like 7 minutes close together! While my waters hadn’t yet broken, I thought I’d be safe and call the doctor, who promptly told me to get myself to the hospital. So in the middle of dinner (before I got to have Papu’s apple crumble and custard!) we left for the hospital with contractions a mere 5 minutes apart.
|Andel's every whim was catered for: a lazyboy and dstv|
|Trying to brave the pain without meds (stupid girl!)|
After a quick examination, the appearance of my show, and some foetal monitoring, the doctor declared that I was in active labour, and would be holding my baby in the morning. Of course, when he said morning, I was thinking early hours of the morning. What I didn’t expect was a marathon 13 hours of labour. After braving the pain for 5 hours, I took some meds (if it’s on offer, why not, I say). Two hours after that, I could feel more pain – more than I had ever experienced in my life; pain no amount of bravery could combat! I practically begged for an epidural, and felt instant relief once it was administered. By this time though it was 04h00 in the morning, and much to my concern, there was still no sign of my baby. At 07h00 after yet another examination, the doctor recommended an emergency caesarian. He explained that the baby was in some distress, and that despite my contractions being very close together, and the baby being ready to come out, my body was not ready to let him out.
Now I was pretty set on having a natural birth. I was looking forward to pushing my body, and then my baby, but at that moment if the doctor had told me he needed to amputate my left leg to get my baby out, I wouldn’t have hesitated to let him. So an hour later, on Monday 18 June 2012 at 08h13 (on cousin Christopher’s 24th birthday), completely incoherent compliments of a failed epidural top up and a very effective spinal block, I met Zac James Klaasen.
|And then there were three...|
Zac and I spent the next three days in the hospital: getting to know each other, learning the ropes, and being showered with love and support. Since then, we have been at home. Following a 6-day weekend Andel spent with us, I've taken the more conservative approach and not left the house at all (it's not like the weather has helped coaxed us out) - choosing instead to ease into our new life together. While I'm still a bit tender and sore, I'm definitely more mobile (navigating the stairs, as well as getting used to doing everything with one hand, and only one eye open), and trying to remember to savour every moment of this time.
And Zac: he's the sweetest, most gorgeous boy; a sound sleeper and particular eater, with mysterious eyes, many expressions and a strong will. He may look exactly like his Daddy, but one thing's for sure: he's his Mommy's boy!
|Zac James Klaasen|