she’s coming. i know it.
also, if shes actually a boy and happens to be born with a little penis then her name is thor and it would be unwise to argue. every time it rains i get in my bath and have hours of contractions. thats thor alright.
yesterday it rained. it POURED down, big fat raindrops like a cartoon show. jims tutoring client cancelled last min so he came home early and we all put on jackets and grabbed the umbrella and walked to the market in the park.
contractions started. we bought tomatoes, strawberries, a duck that was a good price, olive bread and an awful lot of expensive fancy chocolate. blaze stood at chocolsols table and politely asked to try all the chocoalte. the lady kept up and gave her small pieces to try of each one. blaze kept saying “that ones not my favourite. can i try another one?”
all the while, contractions contractions contractions. the girls got a balloon animal each from the clown. contractions contractions.
Jim asked me to go pick out the tomatoes. i said “no. i can’t” turning inward deeply to feel my body ripple through with a big squeeze.
we came home and i went to lay down. so did jim, who is getting sick with some sort of gross cold again. squeeze, squeeze, squeeze. it wasn’t stopping so i got in the bath tub. the warm water helps. i made a cave – kept the lights off and pulled the curtain across. outside, its still raining gently. storm outside, storm inside.
its different from my first labour. with cordelia, i was game to labour but also nervous and scared. it was my first labour and i didnt know what to expect or even if i could handle it. when i was in the bath with cordelias labour, i had jim sit with me in the bathroom and i needed him to be there. i remember he sat on the toilet lid with a bowl of soup and spooned me potatoes in between contractions and just stared at me with admiration and love. never for a second did he doubt me. which made me not doubt me. we were pretty far along by that point, and i rolled and thrashed around with each contraction, never able to get comfortable. the discomfort is inside your body and you can’t get away from it.
Beth mentioned at some point, at our last workshop, that a mother can have a great birth. she can love her birth, and it looks as if everything went perfectly, and overall it was just magical. but in that birth, there can be moments that were scary or traumatic. one of the moms in the room actually started to cry. she said “i had an amazing birth. but there was a point that was scary and traumatic. i never looked at it that way.” its important to see the whole thing as little pieces, not as a whole. for this mom, she got the birth she wanted despite the odds stacked against her. but there were some HUGE breaking of cultural rules for her, as a native woman. it was a bit of an emergency and paramedics didn’t respect or give her the few moments of space for what she and her partner needed to do, as members of an ingenious society, to welcome their child. she missed that part. instead, they whisked her daughter away and it was deeply upsetting.
Cordelia labour was slow, steady, and the whole thing was lovely and i was so pleased with how it turned out. but there were bits and pieces that were scary. now, sitting in my tub the second time (no time to get in the tub with blaze….) i can see how stressed i actually was.
this time, jim kept coming in to check on me and ask what was going on and if i needed anything and i wanted to just chase him out. get outta my cave! don’t turn the lights on! i love you and i know you want to know whats going on but please just leave me alone. in the back of my head, i was thinking “you’ll hear her squawk when i catch her myself in my bathtub” and fully expected to just labour there, quietly in the dark, until i pushed her out into my own hands. its so different, the first labour and this one.
each time it rains i go through this. and each time its slightly more intense than the last time. i had a hunch i was actually in legit early labour, and it was just start-stopping over the course of days. i checked my own cervix. yup. i am definitely in real labour. i am about 2-3 cms open. i can fit two fingertips inside my cervix and stretch them open slightly. i can feel the top of her head. i can tickle the top of her head and she squirms away from me. theres a baby in there. right there, so close that i can touch her head.
of course this doesn’t mean or predict anything. i can walk around at 2-3 cms for weeks. or i can drop a baby all at once in the next storm. “your cervix is not a crystal ball” it doesn’t tell you ANYTHING. it just tells me things are happening. but not how or when they will continue to happen. AND, since its a sphincter, it could have very well closed up again. so whatever. so much of this birth business is about throwing your hands up and saying ‘we just don’t know. wait and see.”
the rain cleared up and the contractions passed.
i dreamed that i was on a huge bed, next to a woman who i don’t actually know but in the dream i did know. we were both laboring. my labour was calm and sleepy, hers was scary for her, she was panicky. my baby came down first and i caught her and wrapped her up and set her aside so i could catch the other woman’s baby. her baby had dark hair and was born staring at me (which means babe was OP. no wonder she was so uncomfortable) with its eyes wide open. baby looked shocked. my baby was sleepy and calm, like my labour. hers was wide awake and scared, like her labour.
we were both naked and smeared in fluid and blood. the sheets on the bed were soaked. we sat up, and put our two babies side by side. mine had long dark blonde hair. hers had short thick black hair. her baby was awake and staring at us. mine slept. both girls. nobody else in the room with us.