Samir Abbas - Nov 2019
Lindsey - Smiling between the surges
We had waited for you to join our family for what seems like forever and when you finally decided to join us you came incredibly fast! Towards the end of my pregnancy I started having frequent Braxton Hicks surges and felt really heavy and big. My doctors said that you would probably come early and that I wouldn’t make it to my due date. This got me so excited and once I hit 38 weeks I waited for you every day to arrive, but as your due date crept closer I gave up on expecting you early and decided to just let you come when you were ready. I walked every day, drank raspberry leaf tea, bounced on an exercise ball, and listened to my hypnobirthing affirmations and relaxation tracks while I waited for you to tell me that you were ready.
On your due date, I woke up at 3:30am feeling a little bit different. I didn’t know if it was just my brain getting excited because it was your due date or if things were starting to happen! Either way I couldn’t fall back asleep. My Braxton Hicks felt lower and tighter and sort of wrapped around to my lower back, but it didn’t hurt so I thought hmmm maybe I’m hungry. I went downstairs to have a banana and some milk and decided to stay downstairs and listen to the Rainbow Relaxation track and the Depthometer track on the couch to relax and fall back asleep. It worked and I woke up and plugged in our Christmas tree while waiting for your dad and sister to join me downstairs. We all had a slow morning and I felt totally normal, but I told your dad that we might get to meet you today or tomorrow. He got super excited!
I told everyone that I wanted to go on a walk and then have breakfast at the golf course. So we packed up the stroller and walked around our apartment complex. I started to get really hungry so we cut our walk a little short and headed to breakfast. During the walk I felt surges, but I didn’t have to stop for them and could continue walking. I still didn’t think I was in labor. I ordered a huge breakfast and ate everything! My appetite was massive. I think my body was getting ready for your birth day. Towards the end of breakfast I told you dad that maybe I should start timing my surges and he agreed that it was probably a good idea. So at 10am I officially started timing my surges and they were around 5 mins apart lasting 30-45 seconds. Again I was in no pain so I really thought I was in false labor.
Your sister had her swim lesson at 10:30 so we went home and changed into our swim suits. The surges were getting stronger and staying 5 mins apart lasting almost a minute. I remember saying as we walked out the door oh I think I might be in labor! Your dad asked me if I wanted to go to the swim lesson still and I said yes. It took me awhile to get to the car. I had to stop and breath through the surges when walking. We got to the pool and I listened to my Affirmations while watching your sister swim and timing my surges. They were still 4-5 mins apart and sometimes they would be 2-3 apart when I walked or moved. After the swim lesson I told your dad that we should go home and head to the hospital.
At home we all showered and I really had to stop and focus on my breathing when a surge started. I really didn’t want to leave and walk to the car. I just wanted to stay home, but we had to drop your sister off at her friends house where she would stay while we were at the hospital in Jeddah. I managed to walk to the car, but had to stop several times and focus on my breathing. At Charley’s friends house I made myself get out of the car and hug her goodbye. It was hard to get back in the car. I just wanted to kneel on all fours on the ground and just focus on my breathing. I got back into the car and your dad drove us to Jeddah.
It was an hour car drive to the hospital and during that time I listened to the affirmation tracks on repeat and visualized that my uterus was a balloon and during each surge I would fill up a different colored balloon. I was making a bouquet for your birthday! The car ride passed by super fast and I had my eyes closed the entire time thinking about blowing up balloons and visualizing you meeting your big sister. This made me smile every time and get so excited. I did this towards the end when the surges got really intense. While I was visualizing your birth your dad was ignoring police requests to pull the car over at the checkpoint outside the city. He was really happy they did not send a car after us! The closer we got to the hospital I started to feel sick. At the time I thought it was because I was car sick, but now looking back I think my body was going through transition. As we were around the corner I started to feel like I had to poop. The surges lessened and I started to make low humming noises. This helped me a lot. You dad pulled into the emergency entrance and helped me out of the car. I really thought I was going to give birth to you in front of the hospital! They helped me into an assessing room and took my weight, height, temperature, and blood pressure all while asking me why I was there. We told them I was about to have a baby! I was smiling and chatting with the staff so they had no idea how close I was to meeting you. Your dad was busy getting harassed by security guards and nurses to move the car that was blocking the emergency room entrance but he refused to move it till he was sure I would not be left alone. They wheeled me in a wheelchair to the labor floor while your dad parked the car and grabbed our bags.
I said hello to everyone on my way smiling because I was so excited to meet you! We planned on a waterbirth so they wheeled me into the room and started to focus on filling the tub. I undressed and instantly went to the exercise ball in the room and hugged it while on all fours. I started to feel the urge to poop and started making low animalistic noises. I was all alone. Your dad was still parking the car and our Doula Nur was on her way to the room. The staff were just getting the tub ready and wandering around the room. When your dad came into the room I told him the baby was coming and he instantly got down and started to light massage my back. He asked if I wanted music turned on and I said sure. While he was turning on the rainbow relaxation track on the stereo I had another surge and my water broke. It felt like a water balloon popping! Your dad then went out to get Nur. The staff were not letting her into the room, but your dad told her the baby was coming and she just walked right on in. After that the staff really started to take us seriously and came into the room.
They told me I had to get up onto the bed to be assessed. I did not move. It felt impossible. I thought you were coming any second and standing up and climbing onto a bed seemed crazy. In the end, with the help of your dad and Nur, I made it to the bed. The doctor assessed me and told me I was fully dilated. During this time they were trying to strap monitors on my belly, but as soon as I heard I was fully dilated I turned around on all fours and started to breath you down. I let my instincts take over. Nur squeezed my hips/pelvis as I breathed you down while your dad light massaged my back and it felt incredible. I reached between my legs and could feel your hair! It all happened SO fast I think only a breath or two later I could feel you moving down the birth path and then your head was free! And the next second so was your body. Your dad caught you and passed you through my legs so I could hold you and turn around and face your dad. He told me that our Clark was here and we were both so incredibly happy to meet you! Another girl!!
I was in pure bliss and in shock that I was holding you. From walking into the hospital to holding you it had only been 30 minutes!! Part of me didn’t believe that I had given birth because it was so fast and was so easy compared to your sisters birth which took hours not minutes. I wasn’t even officially admitted into the hospital. The staff cleared out of the room and let you lay skin to skin attached to your placenta for two hours. We just stared at you and tried to wrap our heads around how amazing your birth had been. Your dad went to admit me to the hospital and Nur left us alone to bond. You were so cuddly and calm and crawled up to my breast and nursed.
They moved us to our recovery room and I didn’t sleep at all that night. I just stared at you because I couldn’t believe that you were real and here. I was head over heels in love with you! Clark you were so punctual (born on your due date!) and efficient (3.5 hour labor) and calm ( you only cried when they put you on a cold scale to be weighed) with your entrance to this world. You love to be snuggled and love to eat and sleep. You are a super calm loving babe and I cannot describe how perfectly you complete our family. I love you with all my heart and I know I will think about your birth day with awe and happiness for the rest of my life.
Mama and Daddy