on bringing baby home.

March 19, 2012, Michaela Evanow, 1 Comment

There have been many tears shed over the past 12…or something days, since Florence was born. I can’t even tell you how many days its been, because I still cry when I think about it. Good cries, happy cries.

It all started with the day we left the hospital. They discharged us a mere 4 hours after I had given birth at 4:00am because everything went smoothly, but I was feeling a wee bit hesitant and a tiny bit tired, so we decided to stay. They also wanted to test her sugars because she was a big baby (she passed with flying colours, and they didn’t bother testing again) so we opted to stay for that. In my postpartum haze I figured Jay would go home with my mum and get some much needed sleep. When he said he was staying too, I nearly collapsed with relief. Of course he would stay. What was I thinking?

It was pure bliss being in the hospital for a few more hours. I managed to sleep a bit, sing the newly born Florence and Jay back to sleep (when will someone sing me to sleep?) breast feed and hobble out of bed to use the loo—all of which took quite a bit of effort. But I felt like a queen, with the skylight gaping open, revealing the soft dove gray of the morning. I had given birth. I have a daughter. I make milk…or will very soon. I am a woman, hear me roar! It was all very empowering and mind blowing.

Then they brought me breakfast, and I felt a little deflated. Raisin bran, stirred strawberry yogurt, a mushed croissant, a banana, an orange, Red Rose tea, 2% milk (ahhh, 2%!) Where was I? In a nursing home? They need to figure out a better postpartum meal for mums, seriously. In any case, I ate it all, and it tasted better than expected. Probably because an hour after giving birth, I was starving, and all they could find for me to eat at 2:30am was a cheese and tomato sandwich. Which was not good, but needed. Heck, I couldn’t even feed myself, I was so high on adrenaline.

At 12:30pm on the 7th we decided it was time to go home.

By the time we got Florence into her car seat and left the underground parking, I was in love with all the nursing staff (even though one of them said, “well this is what it feels like without an epidural after birth, so…yeah…” and “well it could be because you gave birth in the water that she’s mucousy…so yeah….”) Whatever, it didn’t even phase me.

Note: All babies have mucous after birth. They tested Flo’s oxygen and she was perfect. Water births are becoming somewhat of an “issue” at BC Women’s, because OB’s and some doctors don’t do them, so therefore, don’t approve. But there are some mighty fine and powerful midwives fighting for the mother’s right to birth in water, so I’m not worried. And most likely, I will be birthing at home next time around. 

Back to being in love.

I was in love with everything. Even with the gray, but almost sunshiney world of Vancouver, that suddenly looked very different (in other words: if you come one inch closer with your damn SUV I will get out of the car and claw your face off).

Eventually Jay asked if I was hungry. Shame crept in and I realized I didn’t want to stop at Whole Foods for a salad and tofu–no—I wanted to eat McDonald’s cheeseburgers and crispy fries and a McFlurry. I was so disgusted with myself, I vowed never to tell anyone, but here I am, letting you all know. Once a vegetarian, a real hater of anything “fast”, and yet happily chowing down on Lord knows what. Funny thing is, they forgot the fries and gave me apple slices instead. So we pulled over at the next McDonald’s and ordered fries…and another cheeseburger. It did taste spectacular.

We got her home safely, and I forget everything else. Except that I cried huge, fat tears. She was a part of the world now, she was no longer protected inside my womb. I didn’t even like being pregnant, and yet I missed it. I cried because she was a part of me and Jay, and I could see it written all over her face and toes and chin. I was scared too, and felt that new mother anxiety creeping in. She can survive in my uterus, upside down, suspended in amniotic fluid between my pelvic bones, but can she survive sleeping on her back?! Is that normal? Do all babies make these noises? She is grunting like a little piglet all night long! She coughed. She’s choking, I know it, Jay turn the lights on, oh God, Florence, are you okay?! She just pooped black tar three times in a  row. Ok, is that normal? She’s crying, that’s good right? Don’t. Even. Mention…SIDS.

And the thoughts go on and on. They will pass, I know.

This is just the beginning…and I’ve learned very quickly to let go of my anxiety and fear. For I know that I’m not in control, but the Lord Jesus is, and Florence belongs to Him.

If I was in control (which I try to be every second of every day, just so you know), it would get pretty crazy. More to come on that.

1 Comment

  • Reply Telsey March 19, 2012 at 12:43 PM

    Loved this Michaela! It’s all so accturate of what almost every mother feels when she first brings her baby home. It took me back to when mine were newborns. I used to wake up and place my hand on their back or tummy to make sure they were still breathing. Lots of love!

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