Finally! In this week’s Wednesday’s Wild Chronicles series we get to discuss Little-Flower’s birth. I should have known we were going to be in trouble with Little-Flower after she refused to be born even after a full day of inducing labor. I would say she was stubborn from day one, but she was not even born and already displaying her temperament!
Upon arriving at the hospital on day one we knew the unit was full and we would not be able to stay up at the hospital. The parents of a friend I grew up with had offered to let us stay with them if we reached that problem. So, after a full day at the hospital eagerly awaiting Little-Flower’s birth, we packed up and headed to their house.
I cannot overstate how helpful it was to be able to stay with familiar people. We were out of town and away from our families who are our main source of support. To be able to stay at a home that I had spent quite a bit of time at during my college and young adult years was immensely comforting in such stressful circumstances!
Day two started the same as the first. We got up early and assumed our places at the hospital. Mama-D was comfortable with me being in the room with her and hubby went and waited with her extended family in the waiting room.
With the medication restarted we slowly started to see progress. The contractions on day one were registering on the monitor, but Mama-D was barely feeling anything. This left her with some false hope that labor was not going to be too bad. As the day went on, this was definitely not the case!
Much of the day was a blur with the time only passing contraction by contraction. I only have a few actual memories of the day. The primary one being a sense of wanting constant reassurance that Mama-D was still comfortable with me being in the room with her. I tried to balance my concern with also realizing she did not need to be addressing my emotional needs while she was wrestling with labor. Many times throughout the day I asked if she was still okay with my presence, but I tried to wait until moments where it would be natural for me to leave like when she got her epidural or the nurse coming in to reposition her.
I would love to be able to tell you how long it took her to reach the magical ten centimeters but a little over twelve hours from the time we arrived out came an eight pound, three ounce baby girl!
The emotions wrapped up in seeing our daughter for the first time are impossible to explain. I silently wept. A part of me was overwhelmed with love for this baby girl. Despite fears that her birth parents may choose to parent I could not contain the love I felt. However, that very same fear was running through me as well. All of these emotions were occurring in the presence of her birth family. In order for me to have the privilege of raising this baby girl, they would be left grieving.
I feel one of the biggest tragedies that occurs in adoption is the lack of celebration at the child’s birth. I could not celebrate. One of the families that watched this baby girl enter the world was going to go home with empty arms. As much love and joy I had in seeing her I was acutely aware of what lay ahead over the next three days.
Prior to her birth Mama-D and I had discussed who would hold Little-Flower first. Mama-D wanted that privilege. I took the opportunity to go let hubby know of Little-Flower’s arrival. I don’t remember my words. I only remember my body shaking so hard against his as he embraced me. The emotions, both positive and negative, were spilling over.
With her birth happening in the evening we had four days before any paperwork could be signed. Those days we spent as much time as possible with Little-Flower. We wanted to respect the birth family and the time they wanted to have with her, but they continually reassured us that they wanted us there with them. It was a bit awkward because I did not want to intrude on the few days they had her to themselves, but it gave us a chance to strengthen the bond we had with them.
Having the opportunity to bond with our child from moment one is something that I will always be very grateful of. I know that there is controversy in the adoption world about whether it is appropriate for the prospective adoptive parents to be present during those first few days before any paperwork is signed. For us, it was the right decision. Little-Flower spent those four days surrounded with love from every side as she transitioned from the only world she knew to the new one she would be entering.
Next up: We Have A Daughter!