Sunday, April 6, 2014

Katelyn's Story, Part Three: Delivery

My doctor was amazing. She said she understood that it's not what we had in mind, that although it's a difficult one, the decision to go for a C-Section was for the best. While she prepped for (my first-ever) surgery, I went through so many emotions. Poor Tim - he was the only one in the room with me - no buffer at all, no one to help absorb the crazy (little did I know that both of our moms were in the waiting room, chatting, stressing, and wondering).

At around 9:00, the doctor came back in, ready to wheel me into the OR. Tim asked her to check me just one last time, to see if anything had changed, if by some miracle I had dilated that last half of a centimeter and could start pushing instead of having the surgery. She submitted, saying that if that's what we wanted, and if that's what we wanted, she would do anything. After all, it's better to have all the knowledge available, right? So she checked, and no such luck; actually, that extra half centimeter had swollen to the point that vaginal delivery would NOT be an option.

And so they wheeled me into the OR. Tim was busy packing our stuff from the labor and delivery room to move it to the recovery room, and putting on the disposable scrubs. While the staff in the OR prepped me, I just kept wondering where the bloody hell Tim was. I knew it had to be time, but I could NOT do this without him! Hellooooo, SHOCK! Get. Me. My. Husband!

I remember bright lights overhead. Everything had that sterility-senility look to it. It smelled like the rest of the hospital: bodily functions and extra-strength cleansers. It made me think of Alexander in the ICU a little more than two years ago; but I couldn't dwell on those images. This was a happy occasion. This was such a different situation.

Doctors and nurses quickly got me all set up, with my arms splayed straight out and a curtain cutting off my vision so that I could only see above my neck. There was one of the nurses that had helped so much in the labor room - John - and that was somewhat comforting. At least there was one familiar face. But where in the world was Tim?

One of the doctors, a look-alike of one of the aliens from Men in Black - the tall guy from the restaurant with the pierogis - kept poking me with something a little sharp. "You should feel touch, but not the scratch." Okay, that's what I feel, exactly. Great. Perfect. Let's get this done. Just as soon as Tim shows up. Speaking of which...

FREAKING FINALLY! There he was, after what seemed like an eternity, there was Tim, in some sort of Breaking Bad getup (white scrubs, a surgical hair net, and face mask, the last of which I think was pulled down to his neck).

The whole thing didn't take very long. Except for looking at Tim, I don't remember anything until someone said, "it's a girl!" and I snapped back to reality. My first thought, when I looked at Tim in that moment, was, "oh good - the ultrasound tech was right - we can use all of that pink stuff after all!" Then they whisked her away, weighed and measured her, cleaned and wrapped her up, and showed her to me, just a quick glance, before they called Tim over to check her out up close.

She was born at 9:45 p.m.
She weighed 7 pounds and 13 ounces.
She was 22 1/4 inches long.
She was (and remains) beautiful.

Again, this next part is fuzzy. Even though at the time I thought it was taking forever, they stitched me up quickly and as soon as I knew it, I was in a small, dimly-lit room. Tim was seated about ten feet away, Katelyn in his arms and a huge smile on his face. John stood next to me, typing at a computer. Behind Tim was another nurse, also typing into a computer.

The next thing I remember was baby's bath time, and I pushed Tim to participate in that. He did, taking plenty of cell phone pictures. We were in that room for over an hour, but soon enough, we moved into a recovery room, where we would stay until Monday morning at around 2:00 p.m.

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