February 4, 2014
Every birth is unique…every pregnancy different in its own way. Having Pesh was not easy…Hell! No normal delivery is ever any easy ‘cept for our lucky sisters who sneeze those babies out! Damn those lucky mamas. Sad to say, I am not one of them. I am specially designed to go on a painful bender of intense labour to last a minimum of eight hours. God must have captioned that with (no resting breaks for this one) somewhere. He probably wore that tihihi-smile when he did that too! I just don’t know why he won’t let me have it easy.
It was on the sunny afternoon of the 27th day of December 2013. It was quiet, and broke. The air stunk of hang-overs, morning beer-locks and lots of drowsiness. Following Christmas and Boxing Day, this was the laziest day of the season yet. I was awakened by the awareness that our baby may arrive soon. I quickly grabbed my now crampled, overused and worn out to-do-list and went through it for the umpteenth time. Everything seemed to be ready…well everything except for the author of that list!
I looked around the house and noticed a few flaws; the comforter in our bedroom was not condusive for a newborn, what with all the dust that collects: the seats in the living room had some threads hanging loose underneath them and the picture frames had some fine threads from the wet cleaning Vivianne had recently done. I grabbed the douvet leaving my husband more puzzled than annoyed; I cleaned it up, and then went on to stitch up the threads make the seats neat. I cleaned the frames once more and dusted the window sils. It was lunch time already and I had just one more thing to do. Buy milk in bulk.
I asked Vivianne to clean up the five litre bottle and get ready so I may show her where the milk vendor is stationed at. She did so while I finished my meal…and the first contraction, like a silly joke started. It was an annoying pain that lasted about fifteen seconds. Deep down, I knew that was it, but I had to be very sure before taking any steps. Justin woke up late with a nasty headache from all the partiying and late night football games. “Eat up well and quickly”, I advised. You may not have your next meal soon” The problem with my husband is he never takes anything lightly even when you wish he would if only to make things easier to bear with. He instead panicked and Mrs Mwambi ended up assuring him at the end of each contraction. After an hour of consistent contractions, we called my sister and her husband who accompanied us to the hospital. My parents were on their way back from holiday and I would have called my mommy to pray for me first. Doesn’t every child believe in her mommy’s prayers? Unfortunately, she, like my husband would have panicked too so I held on to this information till they got to Nairobi.
I was admitted and checked up. By that time, my contractions were getting unbearable to the point I could not sit and wait in line so I was on my knees even as the doctor asked me the usual questions. On My water was not broken so doc pricked it and let it run. It was not clear coloured. Baby had let out her first poop in the uterus. Doc checked out the heartbeat and said it was normal… that she was not tired yet. With my now very painful contractions, part of me wished for a c- section. Yes, even Jesus did ask God to take away the cup of pain at some point! I didn’t think I could take any more pain and I was already feeling tired. The doctor’s next decision left me feeling even more exhausted. “Your baby is active and pushing its way out well” he started. “Her heartbeat is normal and even though she pooped in the water, the active labour only means she has not swallowed this water so it will only be risky if we let you labour on slowly. We will progress you into the last stages of labour and have you deliver normal but hopefully in half the time!” this would have been great news, but only to everyone else. I read in between the lines. This meant more pain for me! I was put on a drip; that which they call the painful waters…and painful to hell and back it was. It was about 8pm and I had dilated at 4 cm only. I was meant to go another 4-5 hours. But that would have been too late for baby. In exactly two hours, with a lot of screams, wails, moans, curses and questions directed at God, Baby Raine finally made her way out; and she distorted my pelvic bone as she made her grand entrance into the world.
She was such a tiny little being weighing 2.9, about 200 grams less what Pesh weighed. She screamed and only settled when they placed her on my belly and I could not believe such a tiny person could make me scream our ancestors out of their resting place. Trully she had already marked her place in this world and I loved her to bits.
The one thing I still find peculiar is just why and how in the last two hours of my labour, Pesh was cranky, had a fever and seemed disillusioned…she would have been rushed to hospital by my parents since they found all our kids at their place, but the problem was that at the same time, my brother and mom had extremely weird stomach pains.At the hospital, my sister also had her fair share of stomach pains which we all assumed to be the sympathetic syndrome. At 10:15pm, right after I had gotten Raine, everyone was well again. No pain, no fevers! Now I need an explanation to that one!
So we are home now, enjoying Raine’s wee cries and Pesh’s over protective behaviour. It’s truly beautiful, and this is how I crossed my year into 2014. Pics coming soon! Happy New Year folks!