My Anesthesiologist’s Name was Gabriel


I have yet to write down or even tell my birth story. I figured this was the best place to do it and that I should probably do it now before my brain cells shrink any further.

Wednesday night 9/23/15
Mom. I feel weird. Like someone is twisting my guts. But it doesn’t hurt.

Thursday 8 am 9/24/15
Ugh. Gas.

10 pm
Maybe I should start timing my gas pains.

I have stress-induced IBS so I am no stranger to weird belly feelings and pains. I went about my day with gas and even drove out of town to have dinner with my dad. Around ten pm I got this brilliant idea to time my gas pains because they were starting to seem kind of rythmic.

My dear husband was already asleep because he gets up at ass-o-clock in the morning for work. I woke him up and said that I thought I was possibly having contractions but they weren’t very long and I obviously wasn’t rolling around on the floor in pain.

He sleepily told me to wake him back up if I started having REAL contractions. I should have pummeled him with a hammer.

Some hours later I wake him up yelling “THESE ARE REAL CONTRACTIONS, YOU DOLT!”

He hops out of bed and merrily starts timing them with our handy phone App…because we can’t do math. They are close together but they aren’t nearly long enough (according to our birth class). So we argue for awhile until I call my mom in the wee hours of the morn and she insists I go to the hospital.

We arrive and I get checked and put in a temporary room. It hurts. But it is totally tolerable. The nurse tells me she will be back in thirty minutes to tell me if they have decided to admit me and then we could do some walking. Fifteen minutes later I press the panic button because my pain has gone from a six to a ten.

They set me up in one of those swank rooms and the anesthesiologist  (who miraculously was already there) gives me my sweet, sweet epidural. I could have kissed the man. I even remember his name. Gabriel. Like the freaking angel.

My husband returns, my mom gets there after her commute and then my dad. I tolerate everyone because the drugs have gone to my head. Seriously, I don’t know if I was flying on cloud nine because of the sudden relief of pain or what. Moreover I had the perfect epidural apparently: zero pain but I could sense my contractions and still feel my legs.

I have no idea what time it is. Everyone chats casually like I’m not about to bring life into the world. The nurse checks me and I progress fast with no pitocin. My doctor finally makes his grand entrance and apparently it is nearly time. So they sit me up so gravity can do some of the work and moments later I press the panic button because I am going to yak.

It’s time to push. I swear to God I said “Really?”

I push for about an hour which is the most unnatural thing in the world. Push like I am trying to poop? Okay but in what universe am I pooping laying down, grabbing my thighs with my legs in the air? Everyone chats some more as if my vagina isn’t laid bare for all to appreciate.

And at 9:11 am on Friday the twenty-fifth of September, Isabella comes (with a little help from a suction cup on her head) shooting into the world. She starts screaming some minutes later, having given this terrified and unsure woman the best gift in the world.

Dear sweet Lord, she is an actual tiny person.


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