My Body Hated My Babies Before They Were Born

I’m not a natural mommy.  I am uneasy and awkward with my children to this day.  From the second I found out I was pregnant with each of them, I had morning sickness.  It was all down hill from there.

Pregnancy and me didn’t mix.  My body recognized my babies as parasites to be expelled ASAP.  As soon as morning sickness subsided, around eighteen weeks, the contractions set in.

People talk about “Braxton-Hicks” contractions.  I am told that these are false, unproductive contractions.  That’s not what I’m talking about.  By eighteen weeks, I was having the same kind of contractions that brought my boys into the world. 

Now, lucky for Rock Steady, I recognized contractions for what they were when I was pregnant with him.  I knew to report what originally felt like the baby doing somersaults as real contractions.  “Dr. Magnificent” (dubbed so because he is the most amazing OB ever) listened patiently and waved me off until I showed up at twenty-nine weeks, two centimeters dilated and bleeding.  At that point, Rock Steady’s pregnancy turned intoa  battle inside my body.  Betamethasone shots.  Nifedipine.  Nights on the perinatal unit and visits from the NICU consultant to make sure we understood what could happen when I delivered Rock Steady at thirty-two weeks.  Because “Dr. Magnificent” turned into a stern clinician when I showed up at his office at thirty-two weeks, four centimeters dilated.  He gave me short-cut directions to the hospital (during Atlanta rush hour) and told me to go straight there.  I proceeded to get lost and stopped for McDonald’s because there was no way I was having a baby on an empty stomach and besides, it didn’t feel like the real thing.  Natural mommy or no, I was always right about labor; I stayed dilated four centimeters for four weeks.  By a week before Rock steady was born, “Dr. Magnificent” was telling me just to call him, that I’d know what to do and when to call.

And indeed, I did know what to do.  We watched American Idol, put Be-Bop to bed, and called “Dr. Magnificent” around 10:00 pm.  We got in the car around 11:20, made it to the hospital around 12:05 (“Dr. Magnficent” was waiting in the parking lot of the ER for us!), and Rock Steady was born at 12:19 am on May 21, 2008.  I got to hold a brand new Rock Steady for a glorious two hours in the delivery room.  A far cry from my experience with Be-Bop:

A Brand New Rock Steady, above

Be-Bop was another story entirely.  I thought those cute little movements were the baby doing somersaults, as I said before.  We discovered the pre-term labor at thirty-two weeks and at thirty-four and a half weeks, here comes Be-Bop into the world.  The video below is Be-Bop when he was about an hour and a half old.  I didn’t hold him for the first time until several days later:

We spent thirty-six days in the NICU with Be-Bop.  That’s a post for another time.  Maybe tomorrow.


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