you never realize how much toothpaste your toddler has splattered across your mirror until you take a selfie
Here's the skinny. (<--- irony is my favorite.) My due date is tomorrow and I had a doctor's appointment yesterday. In answer to her query, I'm feeling fine really, but with a healthy dose of pressure at the base of that prodigious belly. I've been interpreting this to mean the baby is dropping, but my doctor tells me I'm not at all dilated. Fine, okay.
...and then she tells me: she's going out of town beginning tonight and through Sunday. Wait, there's more. My parents are leaving for a cruise for their 30 year anniversary (30! Aren't they amazing?) starting a week from tomorrow. Hold on, I'm not done. My sister Mary departed for a wedding in France a couple of days ago and won't be back from her Tour de Europe until October. I've got a couple more kickers: Sister Right-Hand Audrey leaves for college a week from today,(what are the chances of my talking her out of pursuing higher education? It's for the birds, says I. I need her.) while Sister Left-Hand Anna will be dropping her off via road trip, accompanied by my brother Luke - the last remaining sibling eligible to take care of Jordan for extended periods of time. They'll be back Sunday the 2nd-ish. I'm pulling a Dad in My Big Fat Greek Wedding right now:
Why you want to leeeave me??
This all wouldn't feel like such a big deal, were I not attempting a VBAC with this baby. That's [Birth via who-ha] After Cesarean. (I have an unhealthy fear of the clinical names for all parts private. My siblings and I have an extended list of euphemisms that honestly are probably much more disturbing than the true words but, comfort levels, friends.) Jordan was an emergency c-section, if you'll remember. And it took a good deal of research, switching of insurance plans, and pros v. cons weighing over the last seven, eightish months to find a doctor who was willing to let me even attempt a VBAC, (insurance and liability and hospital policies for those are a b, as I found out) let alone a doctor who I really really really like, and have put up with a terrible commute and office disorganization from hell to see and build a rapport with. If I go in to labor this weekend when she's not here I shall crumple into a heap of contractions and emotions. She assures me "our plan" will still be in place with the doctor on call, but I haven't met her and I'm not big on strangers all up in my lady regions.
So, don't come this weekend baby. But please come before Tuesday afternoonish, because I'll still have helping hands to take care of your sister during our hospital stay. Do you see the dilemma? I'm priming my uterus for labor commencement late Sunday evening, with a skip on over to the hospital perhaps in the wee hours of Monday morning, and a son in my arms by Monday afternoon, if you please.
Snort, cackle, chortle. Anyone who's given birth knows that birth plans are basically useless. A curve ball will be thrown, that's a promise, and when you're toting a belly like the above you can't expect your dodgeball skills to be particularly Vince Vaughn-esque.
I don't know. I haven't been particularly nervous up to this point. I leave all that to Sean.
"So you're sure they'll have crash c-section team on site?" "Why don't you just let them slice & dice? Then you won't even have to labor!" "The hospital's 45 minutes away, what if we don't get there in time?"
a) Yes. b) I am not recovering from a c-section again, if I can help it. It really sucks. And don't say slice & dice. c) Well, sometimes you just gotta get down with a car birth.
But now I'm weaving a timeline from some tenuous scheduling conflict threads and as my mind wanders to all the different scenarios I start to freak out a lotta bit when all I really want to do is lay on our uncomfortable couch and hug a pillow and browse Pinterest and wait for labor. But what if we have to bring Jordan with us and she witnesses the birth of her brother? That's scarring. Or what if the on-call doctor isn't really amenable to VBACs and forces the c-section issue? That's frustrating. Or we have Jordan in the hospital and she's being a nightmare and Sean is wrangling her in the waiting room and I give birth alone and he misses the birth of his son? That's... unlikely. What if A, B, C, X, Y, Z, gamma, epsilon, omega? The possibilities are boundless in the overactive imagination of a pregnant.
I guess what I'm saying is: if you have a moment to offer a very specific time-stamped prayer in the vein of my proposed timeline above, I'd be grateful. Thank you. I'm focusing all my chi on it, but I'm not quite sure what chi is so my efforts are likely fairly fruitless. Anyway, I'll be here (here being: papasan chair with narrow pillow wedged at the base of my back and cushy pillow behind my head and attractively swollen ankles parked on the ottoman) since I'm not mustering much more energy these days than to simply keep Jordan fed and watered and freshly-mmmm-maybe-semi-freshly diapered, so I'll just go ahead and keep you guys posted k?