Since my first two kids were born by C-section, another C-section was scheduled for me for October 11, 2010 at 39 weeks. During Doodle's pregnancy, I just had this feeling that my water was going to break, and I was going to have an “early” baby, but I was trying not to get my hopes up about getting out of the last few weeks of
All day the Wednesday before my scheduled date, I felt crampy and experienced contractions. Nothing too major, but it was enough to make me wonder what was going on with my body. Having never gone into labor on my own, I wasn’t sure what to think. In the afternoon, the contractions stopped, and I figured it had all been another bout of Braxton Hicks.
That evening, Hubby and I were watching a movie and took a break to make some caramel popcorn. (Yum!) I went to the bathroom and noticed I was leaking a little, but honestly I thought I was suffering from a weak bladder—I have had three kids in just over three years! I mentioned it to Hubby, but told him I wasn’t concerned, and would just keep an eye on it. I didn’t notice anything else unusual that night, so we went to bed and I slept SO well! Seriously, when I opened my eyes and realized I had slept soundly for more than six hours, my thought was I am probably going to have a baby today and that will be my last good night’s sleep for awhile!
Thursday morning was pretty normal. Ladybug went to preschool, I fed Stinkbug and myself breakfast and got us both dressed and ready for the day. I started putting away and organizing the kids’ clothes since fall had arrived with cooler weather (Praise the Lord! Pregnancy during the summer is awful!)
At some point in the morning, I noticed the same wetness in my underwear, and debated back and forth about whether I should keep writing it off as nothing, or tell Hubby that he needed to come home so we could go to the doctor to have it checked out. (At the end of my pregnancy with Lady I thought I may be leaking amniotic fluid, so we went in and it ended up being nothing, so in the back of my mind I was thinking it would be nothing this time too.)
Around noon I got lunch ready for us, and about twenty until one, I started pulling out the stroller and getting ready to walk to Lady’s school to pick her up. All of the sudden, the stroller collapses when Stink tries to crawl up into it. I hear the clink of metal and a screw and a plastic piece are laying on the floor underneath the stroller. I have NO clue what happened, but my stroller is now useless and I have to pick my daughter up from preschool in twenty minutes. Lady’s school is a ten-ish minute walk from our house, and we have to cross a busy street. I wasn’t sure I could make it there and back with Stinkbug and Ladybug having to walk, so I panicked a little. I called Hubby and told him I was still leaking something and the stroller was broken and I wasn’t sure how I was going to get our daughter from school. (There were probably a few tears involved in this conversation.)
I knocked on a neighbor’s door to see if they would watch Stinkbug for a few minutes while I went to get Ladybug, but no one was home. I called my friend, Suz, who has a car, and explained what was going on and asked if she would come and get me and drive me to pick Ladybug up.
As I was hanging up the phone with Suz (we had walked outside at this point), I glanced up just in time to see Stinkbug, who had run ahead of me to the front gate, run through the front gate and towards the busy street in front of our building! My heart stopped beating and I screamed Stinkbug’s name. Thankfully, we have worked hard to train our kids to obey right away and he turned around and came right back to me. I scooped him up and started weeping. I have never felt like that in all my life. I absolutely, totally, completely lost it. I felt so emotional and out-of-control of every aspect of my life at that moment. I remember thinking Watch me have a baby today when everything feels so out of my control…
Suz came and took us to Lady’s school and I asked her to call my doctor for me to explain what was happening since her language is better than mine (who am I kidding, at this point in my day, I could hardly speak English, forget trying to explain something in the local language). The receptionist told her that I should come on in, so Hubby came home from class, we laid the kids down for a nap (Suz graciously agreed to sit at the house with the kids) and headed to the doctor’s office. I told Suz as we were leaving that we would probably be right back because it was nothing, and I thought it was silly that Hubby wanted to put our hospital bags in the car with us.
At the doctor’s office, they collected and tested the fluid, and declared it was amniotic fluid. A quick ultrasound showed that my water had broken and fluid was missing from around Doodlebug. My doctor patted my hand and said, “Your baby is coming today.” I felt out-of-control again. I hadn’t finished putting the kids’ fall clothes away and they were in a pile on the floor. I hadn’t prepared anything for dinner for the kids. I didn’t even hug and kiss them extra hard when we left. I wasn’t prepared to have a baby today!
The doctor told us to meet him at the hospital, so off we went. Once there Hubby disappeared to fill out some forms and pay, and I was taken to a room where the poking and prodding and questioning began. Except they were asking me questions in the local language. And my brain was not recalling very much of the local language. I had been told there were English speakers working a the hospital—if there were, they stayed out of sight.
One of the nurses wanted to know my height in meters, and I told her I didn’t know it in meters and all the nurses in the room exchanged a look and a giggle. I felt very vulnerable and alone. Luckily Hubby appeared in the room with me pretty quickly.
We asked about Hubs coming into the OR with me and were told no. I started crying (really I couldn’t help it at this point, my emotions were so up and down from the whole day’s events!) and I think the nurses had some pity on me when they saw my tears, and started treating me a little more gently.
I was changed and put onto a bed and kissed by Hubby and wheeled to the elevator and taken downstairs to the OR. The OR had a funny smell, and one guy working in there had an even funnier smell. He was supposed to hold me still while they inserted the epidural and it was not pleasant.
The only verses that I could conjure to mind were part of Psalm 23 (I had just read it a few days prior) and Psalm 73:28 The nearness of God is my good. I kept repeating those verses to myself and pleaded with the Lord to remind me of His presence.
I felt very out-of-control of everything around me (are you sensing a trend in my day?!) and as they had me lie on my back I was having trouble getting a good, deep breath. Someone noticed, and they slipped an oxygen mask on me. As I started breathing freely, a sense of peace washed over me. It was like God whispered in my ear I’m here, My nearness is your good. Don’t worry, child.
At some point a sweet nurse who knew a little English started whispering to me about what was happening… Her name was Meleck, which means “angel” in the local language—how true her name was! I felt such a comfort from hearing her voice and reassuring words. After Doodlebug was born she even brought him right over to me and shooed the other nurses away saying, “His mother needs to be the first to kiss him.”
Doodlebug was born at 4:43pm on October 7, 2010. He weighed 8 pounds 3 ounces and 19 2/3 inches long.
Really everything felt OK after the oxygen was flowing to me from the mask and God’s presence felt so real and near.
I am so thankful for the experience of having Doodlebug overseas. It was scary and overwhelming at points, but the Lord was so kind and gracious to me through it all.
Happy 1st Birthday, sweet Doodlebug!