Monday, September 21, 2009

And the countdown to 10...continues...Part 2

Part 2: You wanna try growing a human and then call me back?

I was at about 4 weeks post op from my appendectomy which made me approximately 6 1/2 weeks pregnant and it was time to go back to work.  I had only been at my job for less than 1 month when I had to have emergency surgery and I was completely freaked about having to return to my position and announce to my boss that I was pregnant.  Another reason that I didn't want to announce it right off the bat is we had cause for concern with the fact that surgery had been done while I was so early on in the pregnancy and I had a fear that a miscarriage might occur.

After much consideration Jon and I decided that it would be best to be honest with my boss.  The day that I returned back to work I asked to speak to her in her office.  First words out of her mouth sucked my breath out of my body.

Boss:  You're gonna tell me your pregnant aren't you?

Me:  Ummmm...haha (nervous laughter)...

Boss:  Go ahead just tell me.

Me:  How do you know?

Boss:  Just a guess.  I've already had one other person come in today and tell me she is pregnant.

Me: it that obvious?

Boss:  No.  Not at all.  Just figured it was pregnancy. 

Me:  Oh thank god...I thought I was looking pretty good. 

Now that the news was out my boss at least.  I breathed a bit easier.  Next it was time to break it to the family.  We decided to tell Olivia first.  At 4 1/2 her care was all about space.  She just wanted to know if she would need to share her room.

This brought up a good point.  We would need a bigger place.  While our townhouse worked for the 3 of us, the 2 bedroom 1 1/2 bath with barely 950 sq feet was a tight fit for an extra body.  Not to mention my expanding belly and the difficulty in navigating the many, many stairs.  Our townhouse started on the second floor which meant our bedrooms were on the third floor.  Our search for a new place began immediately.

The lease on the town home was up in two months and we were not going to renew so the hunt began.  A few days after breaking the news to my boss we decided it was time to let our parents know.  Jon's mom took it all in stride.  She is not one for dramatics.  Thank god, because I've got that shit covered with my family.

I tried to just call my parents to invite them to dinner so we could make a joint announcement.  That was a failure.  Apparently my mom can sense pregnancy a mile away.  I wasn't but two words into asking her out to dinner and she was like, "are you pregnant".  What the shit Martha??  Damn.

Now that family was notified we held off on any other announcing until we had another ultrasound.  There was still worry about how this little one was doing seeing as he/she has spent a good 3 days jacked up on meds.

At 8 weeks we went in for another ultrasound.  This was the first time Jon had to deal with the wrath of my hormones in connection to having my urge to pee being restricted.  I was a raging bitch.  I can't go more than a couple hours at best without peeing.  Factor in having to drink your weight in water and then hold it...and I was a force to be reckoned with.

Jon tried to be funny.  I shut that shit down real quick.  He would say, "oh it's not that bad" or "it will be over before you know it"...I was like really, REALLY...umm, hello growing a human here...this shit doesn't happen over night.  It takes like 10 months and I will lose my body, my mind and my boobs will become vessels of milk and NOT pleasure!  Lets not even discuss the size that my ass will become.  Did I mention hemrhoids??  Oh yeah...real sexy.  How's that for NOT SO BAD or IT WILL BE OVER BEFORE YOU KNOW IT?!? Why don't you try all that on for size then have to sit with your bladder full of a million gallons of water so that we can catch a glimpse of the life swimming within and then call me back jackleg!

The ultrasound tech was all tiny and sweet.  I wanted to break her neck.  She told me that I could go and "release some fluid from your bladder".  I tried to explain to her that when I break this seal there will be NO stopping so she should just do her thing.  The quicker she gets it done the quicker I can pee and thus end the hormonal rage of water torture.

I wanted to break Jon's neck too just for guilt by association because when she said that he was all like "yeah, just let a little out and you'll feel much better".  I was almost positive that Little Miss Suzy Ultrasound had NEVER had a baby or an ultrasound because she CLEARLY HAD NO FUCKIN CLUE!

Once we were in the room and I was on the table with gel on belly and lights dimmed I became calm as the sounds of the heartbeat filled the room.  I looked over at Jon and it was like we were frozen in this stare of complete and utter perfection.  My water tortured bladder was rewarded with a picture of what we deemed our "little bean".  Too early to see the sex what we had was a little fluttering bean.

We found a new place that had 3 bedrooms and the move commenced.  Since I was "with child" I was spared from the heavy lifting but my mouth handed out twice the orders.  Once we were settled in it seemed as though things were just falling into place.  Feeling confident and with ultrasound pic in hand we began spreading the exciting news of our expanding family.  We figured we better since people were either gonna think I had REALLY let myself go or that I was indeed trying to hide a pregnancy.  Most people didn't seem shocked...maybe we waited too long.

Work was going well and it was the perfect place to be while pregnant.  I was a birth registrar so I got to be around babies and baby names all day long.  This made me realize one thing.  People have anywhere from 35 to 40 weeks (if you don't count the preterm laborers) and they still can't figure out a name for their kids.

Day after day I was perplexed by the excuses I would get from people about their lack of namesake for the kid they just brought into the world.  Of course their were the ones that had to wait for an elder from their family in Russia to call after consulting some tea leaves or smoke from a cigar to advise them of what they should name the little babushka.  There was the woman who already had 5 kids and this was #6...I cut that one slack cause seriously...after 6, I would need to think about a name for a bit longer too.

When they were prepared I was handed everything from Aniken (Star Wars was HUGE) to Koda which was what the lady that popped out baby #6 named him.  She said it meant "last born".  I wanted to ask her if she was having a tubal in order to guarantee that he would remain true to his namesake.  I decided against it and about shit myself when hand to God she walked back into the Labor & Delivery ward 13 months later with all 6 in tow asking to see a nurse.  Turns out she was just friends with the woman and there to bring her lunch, but still I was like...holy shit lady...get a hobby!

One of my favorite naming moments was a phone call I got from a patient.  When there were strenuous birthing conditions it was customary to do the Q&A portion of the birth certificate over the phone and then bring the copy to the parents to revise and sign.  This was not how I liked to conduct the process because 9 times out of 10 I would get something wrong because trying to understand a woman after she has labored for ANY amount of time and then is forced to talk on the phone does not a good combo make.

*ring - ring - ring*

Me:  Birth Registrars office this is Jessica how may I help you?

New mom:  Did you say birth registered office?

Me:  (inaudible sigh) Yes.  How may I help you?

New mom:  Yes I need to name my son.

Me:  Okay...(goes through the general Q&A and verification of birth facts)...does all that sound correct?

New mom:  mmmm....hmmmm

Me:  Okay and the baby's first name.

New mom:  (mumbling)....ake

Me:  I'm sorry did you say Blake.

New mom:  No...I said (mumbling)...ake.

Me:  I'm sorry I still didn't catch that.

New mom:  I said....(speaking up but still mumbling)....ake

Me:  Okay...I think you said Blake.  B-L-A-K-E.

New mom:'s Lake.  L-A-K-E.

Me:  Uh...huh...okay Lake.

New mom:  Yes.

Me:  Middle name??

New mom:  George.

Me:  Okay I have George.  G-E-O-R-G-E.

New mom:  yes

Me:  Last name?

New mom:  Fisher.

Me:  (trying NOT to say...are you fucking kidding me)  Okay so it's Lake George Fisher?

New mom:  Yes.

Me:  Okay I'll be down for you to sign and make any changes.

I wanted to say I will take my time so you can think this one over and possibly contemplate all the ways your kid is gonna get his ass kicked on the playground for being named Lake Fisher. are not a superstar.  This kid will not be playing with other kids with fucked up names like Apple, Banjo and Moxi Crimefighter.  You really need to think long and hard about this one.

I didn't say what was screaming out in my mind.  All I could do was smile as she signed the record.  I tossed a quick look at the baby as I made my way out of the room and quietly wished him luck in the great wide and cruel world.

I'd like to say that this was the only time that bad names happened but it wasn't.  Sadly this stuff happened on a weekly if not daily basis.  Outside of being exposed to all the names that are swirling out there to pick from I had the pleasure of being surrounded by some top notch nurses and doctors.  They were constantly popping heads into my cubicle to check on me.  I also worked closely with a staff social worker.  We became friends and she was a mother hen to me.  She would pop in to check how I was in the morning and then come back by around lunch time to make sure I had eaten.

One day right at about 28 1/2 weeks I was making my way from a patients room and she was following behind me.  I kept pausing every few steps, placing my hand on the wall and swaying.  Before I knew it she was right beside me.  She asked if I was doing okay.  I waved her off with a hand saying, rather breathlessly, that I was fine.  In truth I felt like poo but I didn't want to be fawned over.  After politely arguing that I was indeed fine I tried to make a dash for my office but only managed a slow meander that was punctuated by painful cramps.  I wasn't even completely settled back into my office before there were two nurses at my doorway.  I asked if there was a record to do because my pager hadn't gone off.  The nurses said that there wasn't a record but that the social worker, Tracy, had brought it to their attention that I may be contracting.

I thought they were being ridiculous and I was more than willing to argue that point if they would just wait until this excruciating pain in my abdomen subsided.  They agreed that they would LOVE to hear that argument AFTER they had me strapped to a fetal heart monitor, another monitor for contractions and having the doctor check me.

I relented after two more cramps had me almost in tears.  I wasn't going to be delivering at this hospital because as much as I liked these people I didn't want all my junk on display and then have to come back and work with them on a daily basis.  So while I knew the docs on shift it wasn't as a patient.  Within 10 minutes of being on a monitor the doctor calmly suggested that we contact my husband.  Then he suggested that we contact the hospital that I would be delivering at since the NICU at the present hospital was not set up to handle a pre-term birth at this gestational age.

I went into sheer panic mode.  NO ONE HAD SAID ANYTHING ABOUT DELIVERING!!  Apparently it doesn't matter what you want to do...the baby has an idea that is all their own.  I was contracting and dilating.  Not a good combination at this early stage.  They suggested an ambulance to transport me but Jon was there within minutes and the hospital was already aware I was on my way, so with the doctors consent to "go directly NOT stop for any reason" we went directly to the hospital I would be delivering at.

I was crying.  Jon looked like a tie between terrified and the verge of vomitting.  I was afraid to call anyone whether it be family or friends because I had no idea what to expect.  We had just celebrated our 1yr anniversary and now we were rushing to the hospital all movie of the week style.  This was NOT part of my birth plan.  Fuck we didn't even have a birth plan.  We hadn't even done lamaze yet.  The nursery was only partly started.

I was mentally calculating all the births that I had recorded where the baby was born at this gestational age.  There were 7.  I tried hard to remember what the outcome had been...I couldn't focus.  Jon was saying something about how it was going to be okay...everything was going to be okay.  I wanted to throw up.  I was feeling angry at the fact that my body seemed to be failing me at the most important time ever.  Attack of the broke down lady parts strikes again!

We pulled up to the hospital and after waiting out another contraction we made our way up to the Labor & Delivery floor.

I didn't even have to wait...I was whisked to a room and placed on what felt like a million monitors.  The room filled with the sound of the baby's heart and all I could think was, "God...don't let this be the last time I hear this"...


1 comment:

  1. let me just say that i'm glad i haven't read your blog in a few days because if i had to stop here and wait for the next installment, i'd be going crazy!!! ...moving on to part 3 now... ;-)