Posted by Alicia On Wednesday, January 25, 2012 1 comments

I'm a mother. It's been 7 weeks and that word still looks like it shouldn't be used to describe me. Mother. It's not a word that I ever really thought would apply to me. It's not a job that I ever thought I would be able to manage. But, seven weeks in I'm managing just fine. In fact, this is a job that I've had the least training and experience with but out of all jobs I've had, I'm enjoying the most. And I think I'm actually excelling at it. Instinct and intuition are weird.

I'm not saying it's easy. In fact, in those first two sleep deprived, hormone filled postpartum weeks I wanted to go back to work and give this job to someone else almost every hour. Parenting has a really steep learning curve. You have to learn on the job at something you've never done before and you hold a tiny little life in the balance. There are no do-overs. No Ctrl-Z. I don't want to be too over dramatic here though. I'm sure I'm not doing everything right. I'm just making sure the essentials are taken care of for him. Feed him. Burp him. Bathe him. Change him. Put him to sleep.

At first the little guy didn't do too much. He just slept and ate, slept and ate. But now, he is much more interactive. He recognizes me, studies my face, smiles and coos and stares at himself in his play gym mirror. He makes me laugh constantly. He only cries when he needs something, be it food, a change or a cuddle. But enough bragging...

I love seeing other people enjoy him. I have such a sense of pride that I can honestly say I have never felt about anything else in my entire life. I imagine that it will only get better from here.

And then there were three...

Posted by Alicia On Wednesday, January 11, 2012 0 comments

On Saturday, December 3rd at 5am I started feeling what I thought might possibly be the beginning of labour. By that afternoon, I was sure it was labour. And by that night...oh mama, the labour. That afternoon we put up our Christmas tree and went to the store to find replacement lights. That night, we had a nap and watched a movie. At around midnight we decided to go to bed but there was no way I could sleep. I would start to drift off but then the pain would wake me up every few minutes. After trying to convince me to head to the hospital many times, at about 2am I agreed. I didn't want to head there too early since if you are less than 4cm dilated, they will just send you home.

The car ride there was exciting, scary and felt like it lasted forever. When we got to the hospital, we went up to labour and delivery. Sean said to the nurse at the desk "We think she's in labour", to which I replied, "No, we know I'm in labour, we just don't know if I should be here yet". They put us in a waiting room and after a few more contractions, they took me to a room to check me. There was a television on in the room that was airing "1000 Ways to Die" and Sean and I exchanged looks. As if this day wasn't surreal enough. I'm in a hospital, having a nurse tell me I will probably have a baby that day and it's all to the soundtrack of "1000 Ways to Die".

They admitted me to a nice, large delivery room that had a shower in the attached washroom. It was the room I wanted when we did the hospital tour. Things were looking up. It was now after 3am on December 4th and we were both dead tired. It was a perfect chance to get some sleep. The only problem was, with my contractions getting closer and stronger, there was no sleeping. Sean tried to catch a bit of sleep, however, so that he wasn't falling asleep when I needed him most.

I don't really remember many details about that day as it progressed. The nurses were awesome. I sat on an exercise ball for a while, I walked around for a while and then after they had to break my water, I was bed ridden for the rest of the labour.

They couldn't get the information they wanted on the monitors using belts across my stomach so they had to palpate my belly during each contraction. I must say, this was the most annoying part about my labour. I really just wanted to not be touched and to have people squeezing my belly during the worst pain I've ever felt drove me insane.

During the delivery, there were about 4 or 5 nurses in the room along with a midwife in training, who wanted to observe. It was a full house. The one nurse I will never forget sat on the end of my bed screaming words of encouragement the whole time. I will remember her voice forever, yelling "Come on girl, push your baby out, come on!". If I wasn't in intense pain, I would have found it funny.

At 4:44pm on December 4th, 2012, we welcomed to the world Kieran Oliver. They put him on my chest, skin against skin, and my first thought was that he was the softest thing I'd ever felt. His skin was so soft and smooth, it was like touching something liquid. He was so new, so tiny, and all mine.