Saturday, 4 March 2017

The day she arrived

The morning of our c-section I was beside myself. We had packed everything well in advance as I had been worried about reduced fetal movements a couple of times so there was a chance, in my mind at least, that we might not make it to delivery day. Our pre-admission appointment was for 11.30 and my lovely aunt dropped us off just in time. In less than an hour we had been through all the checks and tests and I was told that I was the first on the list. By the time I was in the bed, waiting to be wheeled around I was sobbing uncontrollably, I couldn't believe we were here and I still had the horrible feeling of something going terribly wrong. It was either going to be me or her, I just couldn't imagine both of us being ok.

I had to go through on my own while they administered the spinal block. That was honestly the most painful part of the procedure as the junior doctor was having huge trouble finding the gap between my vertebra and kept hitting the bone. In the end the senior anesthetist had to do it. By this time I was close to a full blown panic attack and the nurses were trying to calm me as my blood pressure was skyrocketing and my heart rate was so high. When the block finally worked, I have never felt such an odd sensation. I can't even really find the words to describe it. But at that point, all I wanted was for hubby to come in. Meanwhile, he was waiting outside alone and starting to wonder what had gone wrong as he was waiting so long.

Thankfully once they began all the chattering in room (I never realised just how many people are required for a surgery such as this!) settled to busy noise and I just couldn't take my eyes off hubby's face. I'll never forget the look of horror on his face when I asked him if he could smell something burning. "Uh, yeah. They're cutting you..." And then, in what seemed like no time, our perfect little girl was out. They held her up for us to see before whisking her off to be cleaned up a little. Hubby had been sure he wouldn't cut the cord, but in the emotion of it all he was only too eagre.

I can't even begin to put words to the feeling of seeing our little girl for the first time and knowing that she was ours to hold. I know I cried for the longest time, first fear that she would be ok and not need to go to special care, then relief when they brought her over to us and then joy as I got to touch her tiny face and hands. Although I couldn't really move, the nurses freed my hand so that I could caress her and hubby held her safe on my chest.

To say I couldn't believe it was real is not as cliche as it sounds. I still have moments, most recently yesterday while feeding her, that I suddenly think this is all some kind of fantasy I have made up and she can't possibly be here, in my arms. I spent the first 24 hours or so waiting for someone to come and tell us that something was wrong with her, but every test they did was perfect. As during pregnancy, she was fine, it was me with the problems! But that's a story for another day...