Monday, January 30, 2006
What I remember most is sleeping. A thick, warm slumber, like being cozied in a cocoon. Four in the morning, the tender touch of my husbands hand on mine. His palm rubbing small circles on the back of my hand. The green-blue ribbons of vein vibrant beneath my thin skin. The stark room was large and washed in cold florescent light. My arm had slid from beneath the thin blankets and was resting on the chilled metal railing.

Sleeping and waiting. Each hour, to be opened and prodded. Three and a half centimeters at three-thirty. Five at five. The current of my body coarsing forward in unison with the tides of time. Miraculous.

At six, they broke my water, flooding me in warmth. A bath. And an epidural. Shuddering and damp I fell back against the pillows, breathing. Waiting. One-one-thousand, two-one-thousand, three-one-thousand. Relief. Exhale. And, I fell back into sleep, warm.

At nine, we were ready. He and I, ready for life. Four pushes, maybe five. Easy and natural. I was born to do this, I thought. Though he had done most of the work, sliding himself down the curve of my body, pressing on his own - while I sat, watching a contraction peak in jagged angles across the monitor thinking Thank God for epidurals.

Nine Forty-five. He was on my stomach, streched with his arm beneath his head, a tightly curled fist on my chest - as though I'd given birth to Superman in mid-flight. We all remember this, my mother, husband and I, as though it's a photograph that we can pass between one another and smile upon. His heroic posture belied only by the expression of complete shock on his small face.

Welcome to the world, Little One.

A good friend of mine is giving birth at this hour. I hope she is resting well and listening to her body. I hope that her labor is easy and that her body is strong. I pray that she is as blessed with her little boy as I have been by mine. Praise God for safe labors and healthy babies. For the beauty and miracle of life. For the gift and the journey.

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Blogger Katie said...

Mella, how beautiful your words are. They flow so well and take me down a road that I myself have never even been on before. Thanks for sharing.

Blogger Teri said...
Blogger Wino McHackenpuke said...

It's giving birth like taking a loud, kicking dump? :)

Blogger Neo said...

Mella - Wow! Amazing decription to giving birth! Prayers for your friend; hoping she has a safe and blessed child.

Peace & Hugs,

- Neo

Blogger ~Deb said...

Again, as I've said before, Mella--you are a word master! I loved this post. Beautifully written.

I hope your friend and her baby are in the best of health. :)

Blogger Susanna Rose said...

I hope your friend had a good labor as well and is enjoying the first glimpses of her child like those you describe! Though it may be hard sometimes, how blessed we women are to be able to be such a part of the miracle process of birth!

Blogger Mella said...

She's doing wonderful. Twenty-three hours of labor later - she's happy and holding her 9.86lb 23+inches "little" boy.

Blogger John Paul said...

9.86 is big.

Very nice piece BTW. In the old days, they did not let guys in the room. My dad never got to see his three sons being born. I got to see both girls. I was expected to help too! Holding hands, massaging, getting ice chips. The first labour was very long and I was in swim shorts and bare feet (from helping mom in the whirlpool) for about 8 hours. I joked about how sore my feet were (you think you're in pain from the delivery , honey, but what about my feet!). She didn't think it was funny.

They one thing that really stood out was how huge they both seemed. Both 9 pounds. I could not believe how much baby was delivered.

Blogger Mella said...

John Paul Woah, two girls at 9 pounds - your poor wife!

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