I LOVED being pregnant. Like ABSOLUTELY LOVED it!
Like, loved it so much that for nine whole months, I did not think about the delivery. Not even once. Seriously.
I honestly could have stayed pregnant forever.
And it was simply because I had THE BEST pregnancy ever. I’m not trying to gloat here, but it was.
I gained 39 pounds in total, and almost all of that was just in my belly. Well, at least that’s what I think! I also had zero morning sickness. I was able to rest when I was tired and eat when I was hungry. I had enough energy to stay on my feet all day while at work and even plan and execute a pregnancy prank on an unsuspecting co-worker.
I also stayed pretty mobile right up until delivery at 37 weeks and 5 days. I mean, my husband and I recorded a silly parody music video the day before the boys were born.
Awesome, right? Yeah and I felt pretty good, too. Ha!
So really, I was happy living in the moment.
But then, all of a sudden, it was January 6th. How did 9 months go by so fast? And in a matter of hours, the two babies that were nestled tight on the inside of my belly would soon be on the outside.
How did I know this? Well it’s because we (or rather, I) had a planned c-section.
Zayn’s (a.k.a. Baby B) umbilical cord was attached to the side of the placenta instead of the centre and as a result didn’t have a strong enough hold to withstand the pressures of a vaginal delivery. So regardless of how either he or Ayden were positioned at the time of delivery, any kind of contraction had a fair chance of ripping Zayn’s umbilical cord from the placenta. Microbial pandemonium aside, going this route would likely have me undergoing an emergency C-Section anyways, so why not just schedule it from the beginning and save us all the panic! This is called a marginal insertion, btw.
I would really, really, really love to say here that it was magical. But as I entered the operating room and lay down to rest on my back, there’s really only one way to accurately describe the delivery and my emotions around it.
Yes, I said surgical.
From our little waiting area, I was wheeled into the O.R. and put onto an operating table (okay, I actually climbed onto it myself). I was asked again if I wanted a spinal tap to numb my body from the ribcage down (and I did) and was introduced to the anaesthesiologist.
Two needles were put into my spine and then I was lowered back down onto the table. I was also given a shot of gravol through my I.V. to help with nausea related to an ingredient in the spinal tap. A sheet separating my upper half from my lower half was put up. Shaheed was called into the room and then it was baby time.
I couldn’t feel pain, but I could feel pressure. I felt my OBGYN move something across my lower abdomen, presumably the scalpel, and then I felt her massaging my belly. Like a deep tissue massage. Pushing from the outer belly in, deep compresses…
She was trying to edge the first baby closer to the incision, but it felt like she was popping a huge zit. LOL!
I’m going to let that image sink into your minds for a little bit.
Okay, moving on.
She then reached in, grabbed hold of the baby, and pulled him up and out into the world. I could feel something being pulled out of me and I realized then that that would be the closest feeling I would have to labour.
She held Baby A (a.k.a. Ayden) up over the sheet for a sneak peek before passing him off for a super quick clean and weigh-in. He had barely made it into Dad’s arms when my doctor was reaching in for Baby B (a.k.a. Zayn).
It was another Lion King moment as she held him up over the sheet before whisking him away.
Okay, hands up people. Who just sang Lion King’s “HaaasssseeweenyyyyaaaaaaNaaa… “? (I actually don’t know the rest, but that sounds right, right?)
After a quick cuddle with me (one of the nurses held Zayn up to my face for a few minutes) all three of my boys left. I was then sewn up, cleaned up, and wheeled to meet them in the recovery room.
One hour later we were all moved to our permanent (and private) room at Surrey Memorial Hospital where some pretty eager uncles, aunts, and grandparents were waiting for us.
I will admit here that even though I had a chance to enjoy skin-to-skin cuddling (and my first breast-feeding experience) with my boys in the recovery room, “it” didn’t feel real yet.
It didn’t feel real because it really wasn’t anything like I thought it would be…even though I knew how it was going to all happen. Still, there was no surprise water break, no emotional surge from that surprise water break, no physical strain from pushing, no screaming because the pushing felt like it was going on forever. In fact, there was nothing that made me feel like I was about to have a baby.
So even right after the fact, “it” didn’t feel real until my brother, Imran, hugged me and I felt the slight shake of his chest as he sniffed back tears.
And just like that, my tears came flooding down.
And it didn’t matter at all anymore how it happened, just that it did happen. I could instantly feel every ounce of the 5lb 3oz and 6lb 2oz magic that lay beside me – and with that the unmistakeable, life-altering, soul-shifting understanding that I was now a MOM.