Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Remembering

My scar was bothering me last night. Nothing serious. Just a little sore and tender. It still stings on occasion. Mostly when I've had Mouse on my lap all day. She wiggles and squirms and rubs against the scar that bears witness to my love for her. Every time I catch a glimpse of the bright purple addition to my anatomy, my mind is flooded with a million thoughts. It is a constant reminder to me. A reminder of the terrifying procedure I went through to bring my Mouse into this world. A reminder of her reluctance to enter this world. A reminder of the million changes both physical and emotional that I have gone through the past year.
Weeks before the expected arrival date, Josh and I sat down and wrote out a detailed list of our wishes during labor and delivery. It included a dozen little details on everything from who we wanted in the room with us (no one) to Josh cutting the umbilical cord and how soon we would want to try breast feeding (in the first hour).
It was two days after my due date and two minutes into my doctor’s appointment when my water broke. We rushed to the hospital and because we were originally intending to go to the grocery store and not the hospital, we were not in the least prepared. My bag wasn't fully packed much less waiting in the back of the car, and the birth plan we had so carefully constructed wasn't even printed out. Not that it mattered. We arrived at the hospital sometime around 10 a.m .and what ensued in the next 25 hours had nothing to do with my carefully constructed plan.
Because my water had broken, I had to have monitors on at all times which meant that walking the halls or using the jets in the bath tub was out of the question. I was in so much pain I soon forgot my desire to have no one but Josh in the room with me and was relieved to have his mother there to coach us both through the contractions.
My original plan was to have a natural birth. When labor started slowing down 17 hours after my water broke, that plan was thrown out the window. Pitosin and an epidural were ordered. I pushed for two hours, but Mouse still didn't want to show. I had wanted to avoid a c-section at all costs. I was terrified of being cut open, I wanted to see my baby as soon as possible, and with no insurance the expense of surgery sent me into a mild panic attack. With tears threatening to spill down my face, I made the choice to throw out the last of our plans. It was one of the hardest and easiest decisions I've ever made.
Though I hope to never go through that experience again, I wouldn't change it for the world. Those 25 hours of labor are some of the sweetest hours in our marriage. We leaned on each other more intensely than ever before. It deepened our bond in a way I never expected. Even more unexpected, however, was the effect it had on our walk with God. Like so many other moments during the pregnancy, God had stripped away everything we could have used as a crutch. All of our plans failed, and we were left with the perfect plan of our Father.