What an appropriate introduction to motherhood, and a total lack of control
In denial, I had chalked up all the various early labour signs and signals to my imagination throughout the weekend. We had just returned from our friend Lottie’s bank holiday barbeque at 10:30pm and gone to sleep at 11:30. Then, at 1am, I felt that I needed to go to the loo (not abnormal). Only, when I stood up, my waters gushed out! G had to grab a bucket.
At 36 weeks and 6 days (1 day short of term), G and I stared at each other, still in denial, I tried to convince myself that I had simply wet myself (I think this is the ONLY scenario that could conceivably cause me to think that wetting myself is the possible upside ). Once we emerged from denial, I took a shower and tried to convince myself I could go back to sleep. After an hour of contractions, they were nearly 2 minutes apart and we decided to call the hospital. They advised us to come in immediately…we waited until 3am to call the taxi.
He was stuck in my birth canal for many hours, attempting to come down with his hand by his face. 29 hours of labour later (and 45 hours since waking from our last night’s rest), W was born at 6:20am on the 27th. Delivery was tricky…and, as a result, he was a bit battered and bruised upon arrival. The poor little guy was swollen and a bit grumpy whenever anyone went near his head or neck, for good reason.We’ve since had a cranial osteopath in to adjust his head and neck and W is now much happier.
Luckily, hormones have led me to forget the details of labour and delivery
Since arriving home on the 29th of April, we’ve gotten to know one another. Though we generally stick close to home,we have ventured out for the odd meal out and a few other jaunts. And getting out has really helped me to recover–I feel more like myself when out and about and able to walk around the borough. Without our walks, I would have been miserable.
So back to the theme for this post. Motherhood has brought many surprises. Amongst them:
1. W has a mind and strong will all his own. Our job is to guide him, he will not allow himself to be tightly controlled.
2. Though we’re not currently working, there’s no free time. Tending to W takes about 8-10 hours per day and we cram whatever we would normally do into the remaining time. So much for leisure reading and cafe breaks…for now.
3. Breastfeeding is hard work! Though I realise it’s different for every person, I’ve found it to be overwhelmingly difficult. Building one’s milk supply takes so much focus and dedication that it leaves little time for anything else.
4. W is noctural and transitioning him to our cycle is nearly impossible at such a young age. We’ll get there, but have had to reset expectations that he may get to where we want him to be in month 1, not week 1.
5. They advise that you pack your hospital bag 4 weeks early…and it’s for good reason. I honestly thought he would bake until June! (Ha!)
6. A smile from W makes it all worth it (trite, I know…and yes, I realise it’s just gas )