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I was nearing two weeks overdue when we went for a checkup, hoping the doctor would finally find a softened cervix and some dilatation. Nothing! The baby was where she wanted to be and other than being emotional because it was the Friday before Mother's Day and I had counted on having a reason other than our cats to celebrate, I was feeling great. We put together a plan to meet at the hospital on Monday morning to start the gel for induction and joked about going out on our boat and bouncing the baby out. Later that day, I was finishing lunch and making plans to go shopping when the doctor phoned, stating that she had conferred with others and wanted to know if I wanted to have a baby that night.
How do you answer the question, "Would you like to have a baby tonight?"
We arranged to check in to the hospital at 6:00 p.m. for an 8:00 p.m. c-section. While sitting in the lobby waiting for our room, we were like a couple going off for the weekend, giggling and cuddling while watching waiting room dramas unfold. We listened to conversations about friends screaming their lungs out due to contractions, and the woman whose family who had been there for three days while she was only dilated to 3 centimeters.
When we were called I almost skipped to our room. We met our amazing nursing staff that we would spend the next three days with, reviewed our birthing plan, talked with our doctor, and met the OB who would do the c-section. We joked with the OB that we hoped he had done his workout that day as we were expecting a 9-pounds-plus baby girl. While hooked to the monitor, I wrote in our daughter's journal about what we were doing and watched my husband play with everything in the state-of-the-art room.
While being monitored the nurse came rushing in to see how I was handling the contractions. I had to laugh as I did not feel a thing. The time came to go to the surgery room, so I walked down the hall, met the surgery staff and jumped up on the operating table. They asked what music we would like if the current selection was not okay. Who would have thought?!? The only bad thing was that I felt like we were in an igloo it was so cold in the room.
The worst part of the whole thing was getting the sterilizing wash on my back before the anesthesia as it was so cool. They quickly brought me warm blankets to keep me snug. Keeping true to my entire pregnancy, I threw up the entire time in surgery. Picture my husband at my side in his space suit, holding a sick bag in one hand and a camera in the other. At 9:45 p.m., after lots of tugging her out, my doctor, with tears in her eyes, presented us with Charlotte Grace weighing in at 8 pounds, 3 ounces and 20 inches. All the nurses cheered the moment we all heard her cry and celebrated every moment with us. Upon arriving back to our room and having a bath/massage given to her by her Daddy and the nurse, Charlotte latched on and has continued to breastfeed like a champion. About two hours after getting back to our room we went for a little walk with her wrapped up in her rolling bassinet. We spent the entire night just staring at her. We felt like it was more than we could have ever asked for and not the sterile, unemotional c-section we had envisioned.
--Diane D., Kirkland, Washington
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