|these pics were taken the last time we were visiting Rhode Island...in Grandma Heidi's pretty garden...|
This has been a summer of BABIES in my little world - a record number of my girlfriends have become mothers (or are expecting soon!) This has been an incredibly exciting time for so many of us - entering motherhood - falling madly in love with our little one's - growing closer in the relationships with our husbands - and wondering what the future holds.
I never really talked about my REAL thoughts about delivery...and only gave a quick little summary about Clara's birth story way back when. Truth is, with all these friends of mine expecting I didn't want to freak anyone out - and I didn't want to sound pessimistic about the whole experience (which is exactly how I knew I would sound.) So I shared a few things...hit the major highlights...and let the rest go into the "I'll never speak of it and hopefully forget it soon" category of life.
Except, I can't forget about it.
Especially since so many of my friends have had seemless, smooth, almost enjoyable birthing experiences lately. And I can't help but be sooooooooooooo jealous. Thrilled for them, of course, but a teeny bit wishful that their easy deliveries were mine!
Delivering Clara was absolute hell. But then it was over...and I thought that the worse was behind me. Except, a lot of strange things happened to me that are not "normal" in those moments after delivery...I sat, alone, shivering and cold in a bed full of blood for over an hour while my nurse was busy doing something in the emergency room (obviously helping someone in dire need). Tommy was out with Clara as she was getting her tests, getting cleaned off and doing those fun things. I was thirsty, starving, exhausted, freezing, and in so much pain I couldn't even move... my epidural got turned off hours ago and all I wanted was pain medication...dear Lord. I looked like hell...and felt even worse...and all I wanted to be was jubilant with our new little baby in my arms!! Because really, seeing Clara was absolutely love at first sight. Love.
I wish I could say that it got immediately better. Because...really...umm...it didn't for me. I didn't experience any depression or sadness...it wasn't a postpartum depression (though that is so common among women!)...but it was my pain and discomfort...it just could not be controlled. My body hurt...in so many places...I felt like I literally got hit by a semi...I couldn't walk straight...couldn't sit down....couldn't go to the bathroom...couldn't sleep...was swollen from my face to my feet and was wiped out 24/7. This went on for a few weeks. WEEKS.
I was not prepared for that aftermath. I knew the delivery would be hard...it was birth after all...I wasn't expecting a walk through the park. But...I didn't anticipate what really happened.
I went in thinking I would hop off the laboring table after pushing little Clara out with no prob. My mother had an extremely easy birthing experience with me...and the couple of my friends with kiddos didn't complain about having a rough postpartum time. I felt soooo alone with only Tommy to comfort me. Poor Tommy! (oh wow..my eyes just watered in remembering how horrible that time was for me....trying to be a good new mommy to the most perfect little angel I'd ever seen and I couldn't get past my physical challenges.)
Reading mom blogs didn't make me feel any better. What with all the birth stories about women who labored/delivered with zero pain meds and zero/minimal pain or complications....who talk about how beautiful and amazing and wonderful their birthing experiences were. Oh man. I could not relate to that. On any level.
My body is still recovering. Six months later. Doesn't that sound so dramatic? I wonder if I will ever be the same, and a part of me knows that I won't. There are complications that are horrific that I will never discus with a living soul....and when I think about the whole thing I get so frustrated. I get frustrated because of my body's inability to deal with birthing, and I get frustrated with how I was treated just after the delivery, that they turned off my epidural, that I wasn't expecting it to be like this and MOST of all I get frustrated that I even THINK about this stuff. I want to delete everything in this post from my memory. I just want to relish in the fact that I love my daughter more than any mother has ever loved before...which I'm fairly certain is exactly how every mother feels.
I'm only sharing it because...well...it seems to be a side that isn't shared on the blogosphere...I certainly haven't read anything about this. It has to be OUT THERE SOMEWHERE that a mother (who loves her child more than life itself) hated having a baby...and will admit that it was hard and painful and scary. If this happens to you, you aren't alone...it doesn't make you a bad mama, or a freak, or a complainer, or a pessimist. Even if nobody else understands...I do.