Wednesday, August 31, 2011

"Like ten minutes. I'd just like him to appear."

-designer Rachel Zoe, on what her ideal delivery would be.

When I watched this episode of her reality show, I laughed hysterically! I would actually consider having another child soon if this is how delivery went. I'd consider even have five more!! Instead I'll take my still healing uterus and keep it dormant for another, lets say, three years. Then maybe I'll start to think about another one.

Another misconception that many people let me believe was that I could plan my delivery. November 12th, 2010 was the day we found out we'd be plus one nine months later. Both my husband and I cried staring at the five ((yes, five)) pregnancy tests lying on the counter. One of the best days of my life. From that day on, I planned exactly how I wanted to have the baby. I know I am not a very tolerant person when it comes to pain. I am one of those people who will cry for three days about a stubbed toe. So I knew I would have an epidural. Which was fine because I was determined for that to be the only drug to go in me when I was delivering. Even though I was not the happiest person throughout my pregnancy, I was so very excited about giving birth. I would day dream about being home, or at work, and starting to feel contractions. Then after my water would break, I would excitedly call my husband at work and say "ITS TIME!!" He would run down to his locker where my hospital bag had been so patiently waiting for this moment since May, and then head twelve blocks uptown to wait for me at the Labor and Delivery entrance at Mt Sinai Manhattan Hospital. We would hug and kiss and head inside where we would then go into a room and wait for the doctor to say "Its time to push." I would scream at the top of my lungs, swearing at my husband for the pain I was in. And then BAM! We would hear that little cry of life just emerged from inside me. My husband would kiss me and then go to cut the umbilical cord and then they would hand me my beautiful baby boy.

Well lets just say not one of those things happened. Instead for the last four weeks of OB appointments the doctor would say the same thing.. one centimeter dialated. The week before I was due I tried every natural way to induce pregnancy: hot sauce, accupressure, sex, herbal teas, everything!! Then July 23rd came and went. The next week I walked an average of 3 miles a day. ((I would like to remind the readers that this was also during that 100-113 degree heat wave here in NYC.)) Nothing was working. Our Little Lang was not budging. So came the last OB appointment where we had to set a date when I would be induced. At this point I knew my hopes and dreams of the "ITS TIME" phone call were shot. So the night of July 31st, we took the subway to 96th Street and walked two blocks uptown to the hospital. I was induced at 1 AM on August 1st. I had held off on the epidural due to the fact that I wanted to have control of something. I figured all the other drugs they had given me we're already ruining my "au-natural" plan, so I would take the pain. Well after my OB had to manually break my water ((I will spare the details of this horrific thing which still scar me and my husband to date)), she told me it was time for the epi. I asked her if there was any way I could do without it. She said no and sent the other doctors in to give me the comically large needle to the back. By 6 PM I had not dialated fully enough but Little Lang decided he was going to push thru anyways, causing him to get stuck and to go into stress. Another doctor came in and said they would be sending me to the OR and I would be having a C Section. There was no time for me to come to grips with the fact that I would not be seeing my son get born, that I wouldnt be able to push this life I had made out on my own, that my husband would be able to cut the cords and then hand me our beautiful baby boy. As they wheeled me out of the delivery room towards the OR, I looked at my husband and said "I'm going to be sick." The nurse handed me a bedpan and I proceeded to puke out all of the water and soup I had eaten in the last 18 hours.

I couldn't believe it. It was time. But not the time I had prepared for for the last nine months. Forty-five minutes after arriving in the OR, I heard that adorable little cry but couldnt see anything. The surgens cut the cord and handed him off to more doctors to clean and examine him. Then I heard words that would make me cry harder than those sleepless nights months before combined. "His glucose level is low. We need your husband to feed him some formula." What? Formula? NO! I had all of these hopes and dreams of putting him to my chest and finally feeling that bond that mothers always rave about. As I watched him feed our son a two ounce bottle of formula, I cried. Everything I had planned, everything I had daydreamed about. None of it happened. It was another 12 hours before I actually was able to try to breastfeed and when he didn't latch, my heart felt like a bullet had shot thru it.

Now with my son turning a month old tomorrow, I have officially given up breastfeeding. I tried to get him to latch, but it didnt work. I pumped for a while, bottle feeding him both breast milk and formula. Then when I had to take a few days off from pumping because of bleeding, my breast milk slowly depleated to nothing. I have cried over this so much. I dreamed of introducing my son into the world the most natural way possible and giving him life's nutrients all natural too. But dreams have been shattered. Even though his pediatrician has reassured me that he is completely healthy and will not go blind or grow a third arm due to formula feeding, I am still having a hard time coming to terms with it. It's something that makes me think, when he's crying and I dont know what's wrong, "maybe if we had that bond thru breastfeeding, I could figure out why he's so upset."

I guess this is one thing that is going to have to just settle with me overtime. However, no matter how he came into this world and what he eats, I am so thankful to have this big beautiful baby boy in my life.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

The Good, The Bad, and The Baby

A month ago, I was anxiously waiting for my son to arrive. And as I talked to friends, coworkers, and family about my plans for delivery and motherhood all I heard were words of encouragement and positive vibes. Now as my son turns one month old on Thursday, I wish loved ones had given me a little bit more of a realistic idea of it all.
Throughout my pregnancy, everyone just told me the "good," how the miracle of life is so amazing and each kick and movement is just the most beautiful feeling. No one told me the "bad," that I would have a foot lodged in my rib for five weeks straight and that restless leg syndrome would also affect my arms and only allow me to sleep 45 minutes at a time for the last four months of my pregnancy. And if during that last month one more person was to tell me to "get sleep now, because you won't be sleeping once he's born," I was going to lose it!! However these few "bad" things ((along with many others)), no one talked about. And if I brought them up, most people just tried to steer the conversation to more postivie topics, like how I carried pregnancy so well. Truthfully, one of the only things I found to be so beautiful about pregnancy was that I could eat a pint of ice cream everyday for nine months and still "carry pregnancy so well."

Normally in my life I am a very happy person who only likes to surround herself with the most positive energy. So when I started hating being pregnant I thought there was something wrong. I would cry at 3 AM walking around my apartment, trying to get the tingling to leave my arms and legs while I watched the clock tick down to 6 AM when I would cry even harder thinking, "How am I going to get through this work day?" Not to mention the heartburn that was so bad I was vomiting at least twice a night. The worst thing, however, was the ridiculous rush of hormones clouding all rational thoughts, especially about my marriage. Whoever said "sex during pregnancy is amazing," was clinically insane. I could barely keep my eyes open at 8 PM to even hold a conversation with my husband, never mind anything else. And who is supposed to feel all sexy and in the mood when you're 40 lbs heavier, nauseous, and being kicked from the inside out. But due to these lovely hormones running through my head I for sure thought this amazing, caring, and patient husband of mine was looking for love somewhere else. Crazy, right?? But all of these unspeakable feelings of pregnancy can make a girl go crazy!!

I was afraid of all these "bads" because no one warned me. So when no one would admit to me its not all rainbows and butterflies, I seriously thought something was wrong with me. I thought I was going to be a bad mother. What I found to be even more surprising was that after my son was born, EVERYONE was willing to talk about the good, the bad, and the baby.

I decided to start writing this blog because I found myself doing what I hated, sugarcoating this miracle of life for all of my friends who are currently expecting. Don't get me wrong. I absolutely love being a mother. It is one of the most amazing feelings in the world when my son is sleeping so peacefully in my arms. So I am finding it very theraputic to write about all of the fears and triumphs of this journey called motherhood, and I hope that my blog can only help other friends realize their not alone within their own pregnancy peaks and pits.