As my younger son’s 5th birthday draws near, I find myself thinking back to the whirlwind day he was born. I look into his beautiful blue eyes today and listen to him speak with his little lisp and still, I don’t understand why, find it so hard to believe he was once a little squirming ball of flesh and fluid who had just taken a dump in my womb.
Unlike his older brother’s labor and birth, Bozo came fast and furious, which might explain why at this very moment he is pretending to be a Nascar racer and running laps in our house while he makes me periodically wave our American flag as he goes by. For Si, we had a hospital bag by the door two weeks prior, I labored for 12 hours at home only to find when I did get to the hospital I was a mere 1 and a half centimeters dilated and my mother, after 24 hours of labor, told the doctor to offer me an epidural because she couldn’t bear to see me in anymore pain.
Poor Bozo. No one came to his birth and we were completely unprepared for his arrival despite knowing his due-date. My husband was feverishly installing the wood flooring to our house which wouldn’t be finished until after Bozo arrived. Until then, we were bouncing back and forth between staying at his dad’s house and my mom’s, both of whom were probably thoroughly sick of having a moody pregnant lady, a toddler and an anxious son-in-law always asking, ‘what color stain should we choose for the molding?’. On the 3rd of April, I had just dropped off my husband some pizza for lunch at our almost-finished-house and headed back to my mother’s when my contractions began.
Awesome. Husband is up at the house where there is virtually no cell service and I’m in labor. After an hour or so of 5 minutes-apart labor pains that became increasingly strong, I called him and through choppy cell-phone service was able to get the message across, “This. Is. Happening.!”. He flew from our almost-built house to his father’s house, threw everything he might need into a garbage bag while I paced the driveway waiting for him to pick me up at my mom’s house. I still vividly remember leaning against the lamp-post swaying from side-to-side and moaning while my mother helplessly stood by wringing her hands until, finally, he pulled in squealing tires and all.
I don’t even like to think about the truck ride down there. I have no idea how fast he was going, but I’m sure it was not safe and even five years later I still ask myself “what if?”. I sat in the passenger seat writhing beneath my seat belt holding onto the Oh Shit handle for dear life as his Toyota Tundra barreled down the highway. All I know is that I could smell burned rubber when we pulled up to the hospital. I guess that saying really is true.
Once inside, they sat me in a wheelchair and wheeled me into a room where the nurses scurried around me as the doctor examined me and told me that I was almost 8cm dilated. “Sweet!” I said out loud, “We’re almost there!”. The truth is, I’m actually pretty good at labor. I don’t really scream or yell at anyone and I tend to withdraw into myself during contractions and don’t bother with anyone until I’m done. I could seriously just do it all by myself and be fine. I don’t really need that much “support”, if that is what you call my husband standing next to my bed giving me his limp hand and being more interested in what everyone else is doing around the room but me. It’s just how he is. Although, at one point, I was feeling a bit annoyed by his lack of cheer leading. Not because I needed it so much, but for God’s sake, I’m birthing his second son, give me something!!! So, in between contractions, I tried to communicate my feelings to him:
Me: “Hee-hee, hoo-hoo, hee-hee-, hoo-hoo……..hee-hee…….hoooooooooo…… hooooooo… um, honey…..hoooooo……could you please like…..hee-hee…..hoooo tell me I’m doing a good job or…..hooooooooo……. say something encouraging to me? I could really use it right now”.
Husband: (shaking him from his reverie): “oh yeah! no, honey….you’re doing great, really, you’re doing awesome. Good job!”
By this point, my water still had not broken. It never breaks on its own–slacker. So, once again, they had to break it for me, which marked the only semi-scary part of my labor because when they did break my water, I heard the doctor yell “MEC!!” which means “Meconium”, or for you folk who don’t know what that is, Bozo basically took a crap while in utero. It can be dangerous if the poor baby ingests some of it, but he did not, thank goodness.
So yeah, that was stressful at the time, and If that wasn’t enough, the doctor asked me if her intern could come in and watch. Now that part I don’t care about. I’m all for someone who is trying to learn to deliver babies to come on in and watch one being born, because really, how else are they supposed to learn?
It was the fact that he was gorgeous that irked me.
Why didn’t she mention this to me? In my delirium, I saw him walk in and be led by the doctor to my open legs, so spread-eagle in front of him, it was a little too late to change my mind. Through the wide opening of my knees, I lifted my head up slightly to say ‘hello’ and introduce myself since he was going to have a front-row seat On top of being a hottie, he was very nice and being such a nice piece of eye it did take my mind off the pain for a few seconds. That is, until I saw him craning his neck to get a better look as I was pushing.
Ugh, I bet his girlfriend is gorgeous.
The more I pushed and the closer Bozo was to making his debut, I did start to make some unattractive noises, but again, I was extremely courteous and composed in my hysterics because after I let out a good scream/growl/holler, I asked the nurses if they made sure to shut the door to my room so that I didn’t scare any first-timers out there. I try hard to be thoughtful of others, even as my body is being ripped in half.
Finally, after a mere 6 hours of labor and only a few minutes of pushing, my little Bozo arrived safe and sound. After he was out and husband was cutting the cord and all that husband stuff, Dr. Hottie did pay me a compliment telling me he was impressed because he had rarely seen a woman give birth naturally without any drugs used, which told me he was obviously very new at this whole Intern thing.
Looking at my soon-to-be-five-year-old-today, I’m so grateful we made it to the hospital safely. I’m so grateful he didn’t eat his own poop and I’m even grateful I had a cute intern to help me keep my mind off the pain at times. But most of all, I’m so, so grateful when my little Bozo hugs and kisses me and tells me, “Mommy, you’re my favorite mommy. I would never put you in a junk yard” or “Mommy, you’re my best mommy and I’d never want another mommy and I would never sell you in a garage sale”.
Happy, happy birthday Bozo. Thank you for bringing so much happiness into MY life.