At this time four years ago, I was hugely obese, my normal shapely ankles had become purple, swollen masses known as "cankles" (calf + ankle). I could hardly muster up the energy to walk to the bathroom, which I had to use often, let alone reach around the mound of life to shave my woolen legs or tie my fat, fat feet into running shoes. I lived in Crocs and extra-wide flip flops. And waddled only when and where absolutely necessary. I slept in bed with many full-body pillows but was never comfortable. The simple act of rolling over was met with new bodily sounds and tears. It hurt to live. My husband had long since given up sleeping with the snoring, sighing, farting mass that had become his wife and resigned himself to couch living.
We were grumpy and hot and exhausted. A premonition, I'd say.
My daughter, who was living inside of my body at the time, was planned to make her debut into this world on September 14th, 2010. She didn't like our plans. She was in no hurry to vacate her nest, to move from passenger to operative, to find out what in the hell was actually going on out here. She dug her claw-like feet into my ribs and hung on (atta girl!) I was proud of her resilient, stubborn nature. I respect that in people old enough to talk, people living well outside of my body.
The Indian summer days were very hot and she was late and later still; and by September 27th, we decided that she was grounded for life for being so late and for torturing and misshaping her mother into the blob that was wheeled into the hospital for induction. My midwives and doctors decided that the baby had to come out. I listlessly agreed. I should have known that she would not be happy with foreign stressors threatening her happy internal universe. Induction did very little to entice her exit.
I just wanted her out. Once that happened, I wanted a Guinness and a cheeseburger, STAT.
What seemed like a million drug-free hours later, I took the big needle in the spine and got some "rest" which mostly was me feeling super high and wondering if my arms and legs feel asleep if I would become invisible and if i became invisible, would the pain stop. Just like acid trips, it's all in your head, man.
Then, there was a bunch of drama. Visitors, nurses, doctors, midwives all coaxing a stubborn, fat and happy child into a world of noise and chaos. Oh, the hoopla! Bribery only works if you offer something that she doesn't already have. My daughter was 100% happy, tight space and all.
After many gory, long, hot, stinky hours of pushing and not pushing, of shitting and not shitting, of panting, and sweating, and chomping ice and swearing and well, labor, we went to the surgical room. In 25 mins the doctor cut my baby girl out and she was pissed. No worries about the lungs, she's got pipes like her mama. That girl can sing.
Before she was named, she was grounded. I love that kid more now than I loved her that day. Happy Birthday, my sweet girl. Thank you for not killing me. Now that you are moving beyond the terrible 2s, let me return the favor.
(Ha, now we are even. xoxo)
Now, who wants to take me out for cheeseburgers & Guinness?