Today I have the time to sit and write. Where was I the past few days? Uncle2D had come over and we were all very busy trying to update each other on what’s new in our lives and then play with D too. D is crazy about his uncle… when I say crazy, I mean really crazy! D doesn’t remember his bedtime or his nap time or that he is hungry when he is around his uncle. He may suck on his hand if he is hungry, rub his eyes when sleepy but still continue to play with his uncle. Uncle2D bought BabyD another bear, Benny Bear, and he has bought him one big ball which we have named as Poo Ball and he has The Three Tennis Balls which we call Tibbs. D loves wrestling with Benny, carrying his big Poo ball around and holding Tibbs close like a doll. He is so crazy about his new toys that he even sleeps with them.
We were afraid that BabyD had developed stranger anxiety when we found him not taking too easily to his GrandmaT but now we know that he likes some people and dislikes a few others. I know that I need to teach him to love her but I am really not sure how to make him like her. The past two weeks I have been calling her to my place almost on a daily basis and the days when she can’t come over, we go to her place. I want BabyD to like her and she is trying everything that she can to make D like her but we are still having trouble.
Here is the update on Nine months to babyD.
A week before Baby D was born, I had moved to my apartment to stay with Z. Z’s office is closer to our place and he couldn’t come and stay with me at my parent’s house. Z was having trouble trying to juggle home and work and I thought that I could handle myself at my place but after only a few days I found that I was getting cramps and we worried about early labor. The day before BabyD was born, Z dropped me off at my parent’s place while on his way to work and I stayed there chatting, joking and giggling with/at Joey. It was a normal day, nothing unusual. We discussed about how we wanted to arrange the nursery and what theme we’d keep; we argued about baby names all day with Joey bent on naming her nephew D and threatening us if we named him anything else and we packed my hospital bag. Z had asked me to take my hospital bag along with me when he left me at mom’s that morning. He had asked me to finish packing it. That evening, I packed it up and put in all the 20 or so things my mom had asked me to put into the duffel bag that I had decided to take to the hospital. In the evening around 6pm my parents went out shopping. Mom wanted to make cloth nappies and jhablas for the baby. We weren’t sure if we would ever use them but we wanted to do everything, traditional and modern, that could be done for the baby. My mother was becoming a grandma for the first time and she wanted to put in her two cents (they are worth way more than that!). Mom and Dad went out, Joey and I stayed at home watching Spacetoon. Z came home around 7pm and after he had dinner we decided to go back to my place. Mom and Dad had still not come in and it was 9pm then. It was getting late and I ached all over. I was too tired to even carry my purse and so I thought it better to give the hospital bag to Joey. At the door, I gave her the bag and told her to bring it along if I called to say that I was going to the hospital.
On our way home, I suddenly felt too tired to even sit in my seat. We reached home a few minutes later and I sat there waiting for Z to come over to my side to open the door. It was a ridiculous idea to wait for him… desi guys don’t like opening doors for their women! Once home, I took off my abaya and decided to go to bed but then changed my mind and decided to look at the symptoms for labour in the What To Expect When You Are Expecting book. Z came in and found me flipping through the book. I told him that I was getting cramps and that I was looking to see if that was normal. He asked me to call the doctor just to be sure and although I didn’t want to call her (it was anything serious), I called her up. I told her that I was having cramps and described to her exactly what I was feeling. She asked me if I had counted the baby kicking and I told her that I hadn’t. She asked me to come over just to have a routine check. I was too tired and didn’t want to go but Z was adamant and he called up my mother to ask what we should do. She wanted me to go to and after a few minutes of arguing, Z convinced me that we should go. I called up Joey to tell her that we were going to the hospital. My mother had still not gotten home and when Joey heard that I was going to the hospital she naturally assumed it was ‘time’.
On the way to the doctors clinic, in the car, I noticed that the baby wasn’t kicking or moving. It always kicked around furiously whenever we went for a drive and I was surprised that I could sit so comfortably this time. I then remembered that I had eaten chocolates two to three hours ago and even that jolt of sugar hadn’t energized him to get active. That is when I started to panic… I hadn’t felt my baby move for four hours!! At the clinic, I told Dr. A what I was feeling and she proceeded for a USG. After half an hour of trying to get the baby to move, she gave up and said that it was no use wasting time. She said that if I didn’t deliver my baby in four hours, I could lose him. I had a low lying placenta, the amniotic fluid was low and the baby was under stress. She said that I needed an emergency C-section. We were asked to check into the hospital right away. I tried making excuses to not have the baby that early. I was sure the baby would move and that everything would be well. It was 11pm then and I hadn’t even had my dinner. I was too disturbed and had decided to eat later. All that I had had was two sticks of Twix. Once outside the doctors clinic, I told my mother that I didn’t have the hospital bag ( as if I needed it right then!) and so we couldn’t go that day. Joey quickly responded with ‘I didn’t forget to bring it. It is the car’. I had never been so annoyed at my sister my entire life as I was that day. I couldn’t believe it; these people were really going to get me to have my baby that night.
At the hospital, we checked into OB-GYN emergency and had three different doctors and two nurses take my BP and ask me about my allergies and medical and family history. I was then taken to the delivery room where I changed into the hospital gown and was then strapped to the foetal monitor. The anesthesiologist came in then to ask me the same questions that I had already answered two to three times earlier. He asked me when and what I had eaten and if I had any questions. I asked him some questions and I must say he knew his work well. We waited for two hours to see if there was any change in the foetal movements. I felt only four movements in two hours. The chief of OB-GYN came in with my doctor to discuss if I really needed the c-section. Then another doctor came in and they argued and debated for sometime. It was then decided that we’d wait till morning.
I was moved to a room then but still strapped to a foetal monitor but this one was counting the baby’s heart beat too. Dad and Joey were sent home to have dinner and some sleep so that they could come in the morning. There was no point in worrying. Z and mom stayed with me. Z had been up quite early that day and he had dark circles under his eyes. We asked him to sleep on the adjacent bed in my room and mom and I stayed up talking. It was 2am when I was wheeled into the room and the doctor had said she would come at Fajr. Fajr was at 5.30am. Mom and I chatted trying hard to cheer each other up but it was clear that we were both worried. We both kept praying. She for her daughter and I for my unborn son. The foetal monitor showed that the baby was not moving the first hour but the after 3am the baby suddenly started kicking and moving quite vigorously and his heart beat was too high. When the doctor came in at 6am, she said that the baby was excited by the foetal monitor as this sometimes happened and has thus moved but it hadn’t stirred after the foetal monitor had been shut down. She said that she would perform the operation at 10am. She went out of the room and Z followed her to ask her a few questions. A few seconds later, Z came back and said that I would be having the operation right away. He said that the doctor had changed her mind and as the operating room staff had informed her that they were ready, she had decided to do the operation right away and not risk taking a chance. It was 6.50am when I was wheeled in to the OR. I am surprised that I wasn’t scared. I saw my mother and Z as I was wheeled out and they looked quite worried. Z had nervously smiled at me and given me the ‘I am praying for you’ look. I didn’t know what to say to him so I just smiled back. In the OR, they moved me on to another table and then wheeled me somewhere else and then moved me to on to the operating table. I was pretty excited. I had never been in an operating room before or seen the inside of the operating theater. It was cool, really cool! Such big round white lights that changed to a pinkish greenish tinge. They reminded me of jelly fish. 😀 I was so excited I had wished I had my camera with me so that I could snap pictures to show to Joey. The nurses in the meanwhile strapped me to the ECG machine and they inserted an IV syringe in my left arm and I saw the anesthesiologist walk in in his green dress holding up his hands. I saw my doctor walk in too and she came up to me to reassure me that everything would be alright. Right then I was given something in my IV that really, really sting… I had started to say the ayatul kursi when I passed out. When I came to I was finishing saying the ayatul kursi, the difference being that when I had passed out it was so quiet but when I came too, I was hearing too many voices ( all speaking in Filipino and Arabic) and I was in too much pain. I was in pain, I was throwing up and I wanted to see my baby. I was told I had given birth to boy and that I couldn’t see him for four hours. I was sick, in too much pain and add to that that they wouldn’t let me see my baby… they were getting me angry. D was born at 7am. They wheeled me out at 9.30am and when they opened the door, Z was standing right in front. He came to my side asking me how I was doing and I told him I was in pain. Mom was also there and so was Joey and Dad. Soon Dad and Joey disappeared and Mom and Z came with me to the recovery room. Once in my room, I threw up there too and was given pain killers. I was also feeling very cold and shaky. Amidst throwing up and in my drowsy state, I remember asking Z if he had seen the baby. He smiled and said ‘yes’ and I asked him if he looked like him and he said ‘yes’ to that too. Joey came in then and showed me a picture of the baby on her cell and he looked quite a scene with his hair plastered to his head, eyes puffed, reddish complexion and wrapped in a blue shawl. I remember crying because he was so ajeeb looking. Mom scolded Joey for showing me the pic, dad said something and comforted me saying that the pic was bad and Z kept saying, “he is really cute. He is beautiful…” Sometimes during that the nurse came in informed us that the Director General had come to see me. We were all puzzled when a very good looking tall and handsome Saudi in his twenties walked in and asked me how I was doing and if he could do something for me. I told him I was sleepy and that I wanted to sleep… Everybody burst into laughter and (thankfully) left me to myself. Round 12pm, I woke up to find Joey taking pictures of me and my room and singing, “Joey bunny Aunny” . I would have thrown a pillow at her if it wasn’t for the fact that I was quite comfortable with a pillow under me and that the throwing would have hurt me. I asked her if she had seen the baby and she proceeded to tell me everything about what all had happened since she got there that morning.
We called up the nursery to ask them to send the baby but they only said that they would be sending the baby after 2hrs. We waited and while we waited I worried and thought out loud:
‘Joey, what if I don’t like my baby?‘
‘I’ll take it‘, she said.
‘What if I don’t make a good mom?‘
‘I’ll adopt him.’
‘What if he doesn’t like me?‘
‘All babies love their moms. Besides, you are a lovable creature.’
Thank God for giving me a shrink for a sis. I wonder how I would have survived without her.
Dad came in around noon and they bought the baby in soon after him. Joey bought him to my side and dad picked up the baby and then put him in my lap. Z came in right at that moment and he stood there at the door with a smile on his face.
My first look at my son? He was beautiful! All I could say was… ‘Assalamalaikum baby. I am your mom‘ and just then… he opened his eyes to look at me.
What’s the feeling like? I don’t know… I can’t describe it. It is a memory.. A feeling that just cannot be described. A feeling that A will be experiencing very soon. A feeling that, I pray, is as beautiful for her as it was for me… InshaAllah, all will be well.