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Birthday Eve

            May 12, 2014…. There I was, 216 months pregnant. Big and hormonal, sweaty and not giving any craps about anything, holding one baby on my hip and another in my gut, looking like the red-neck woman’s pregnant best friend. Even my toddler couldn’t believe I was still pregnant. He was supposed to have been here days ago, months really, if you take into account the size of my watermelon-esque mid-section. He wasn’t supposed to wait this long, get this big! How in the world is this even going to happen tomorrow? I mean, he has to be the size of an NFL linebacker by now. And, I don’t know much about labor and all, but I’m pretty sure linebackers don’t come out all that gracefully.

            I’m 100% terrified, to be honest. I’m one half terrified of him coming out, and the other half terrified that he’ll stay in…. Scratch that. Maybe it’s more like 40/60. Either way, there’s some serious fear going on. I keep crying. And then I puke a little. And then I double over for 45 -90 seconds, and then I cry some more. I haven’t slept in days.

          Literally. I mean, I have not slept. Here’s hoping the fourth night’s a charm? Although, I don’t see that happening with all cramping and puking and contracting and crying going on.

            But the doctor said we’re headed towards a c-section if this baby refuses to come on his own. For some reason, he just won’t drop. She’s worried about the cord. I’m worried about the cord. But the only thing I know to do is to walk. Well, waddle. I’m going to waddle a trench down my driveway if it’s the last thing I do. And since I think I’m dying, it very well may be the last thing I do.

            Waddle down the drive. Waddle up the drive. (Quick pee break while near the house.) Waddle down the drive. Waddle up the drive. (Another pee break. Rest ankles for a minute while I contract.) Waddle down the drive. Waddle up the drive. (Pee. I almost made it to the toilet, too. Wipe every sweaty inch of my body with a paper towel.) Waddle down the drive. Waddle half-way up the drive. Collapse in the drive. Contract for a minute. Roll around for a while because I’ve fallen and cannot get up. Cry. Decide I will deliver the baby at home, in the drive. Decide I don’t want the neighbors to see my vagina. Roll some more. A gust of wind and fairies help me up. Waddle up the drive. (Pee….dang. Not even close.) Decide to stay indoors where it’s safe.

            It was finally time to sleep. I was amazed that my husband could snore so loudly on a night like tonight. Didn’t he know that I was expecting any second? Wasn’t he worried at all? I laid awake, gripping my stop watch, fearing that if I let the contractions get too close together, we’d never make it to Pittsburgh in time. What if something went wrong on the drive down? Oh, no…. (this is where things started getting gross, so I’ll spare you the details, but apparently a woman’s body “rids itself of all things when baby is on his way”). I finished ridding and then took a shower to rid myself of the ridding remnants. And there was husband, still sawing logs with his chainsaw snout. But 3:30 a.m. was go time, and go we did.

            May 13, 2014…..I continued to rid myself the entire way to the hospital and throughout the endless hours of labor that followed. Since I had already been in labor for the three previous days, complete with regular contractions and all, I was basically a pro. I did my breaths, I spread my legs for every Tom, Dick, and Harry wearing a doctor’s coat, and I prayed for him to drop. But that’s when his heartbeat went away. And everything seemed to fade a bit. The pain grew small and the doctor’s grew quieter as the heartbeat in my ears thudded louder and louder.

            “I need you to flip, now,” said the nurse to a woman who hasn’t been able to roll over independently for at least two months. My husband, my nurse, and my momentous girth got me flipped in a colossal team effort. An effort we exerted every 15 minutes or so, each time we lost the heartbeat. We did this for hours. I couldn’t see straight anymore. Baby wouldn’t drop anymore. And the doctor’s couldn’t wait anymore. It was time.

            Thirty-minutes later, despite my horrible experience in the OR (something I don’t even want to allow myself to re-tell, just in case there are any pregnant mamas-to-be out there), he was here. Wyatt Patrick Costa had finally arrived. The poor little man had been twisted inside of me to the point that his head was stuck and unable to move down. I would still be pregnant to this day had my doctor not made that hard call for me.

            He was so big….so long! He looked like he needed a good steak. But since all I had to offer was milk, he settled for a liquid diet.

            I was so sick afterwards that I couldn’t hold him, couldn’t experience his skin on mine or take in his tiny little features or plant kisses on his long fingers. I’ve always felt sad - cheated that I missed out on the best moment of my life.

            But today, on the eve of my son’s first birthday, I realize that I didn’t miss out on the best moment of my life. Because every day with him is my new best moment. I constantly caress his soft skin as he’s cuddled up against my chest. And I admire those big, beautiful, brown eyes and memorize the heartwarming tone of his laughter day in and day out. And I have planted no less than a million kisses on those long fingers, tiny toes, and every other kissable inch of his perfect little frame. His conception was a miracle, his delivery was a miracle, and his smile reminds me that today is a miracle.

            I love you, Wyatt, with all my heart. Thank you for giving me a new best moment each and every day.