Taylor Miriam is here! Our special gift arrived Tuesday evening at 8:01, after a very short pushing session and typical pre-labor. Marcus and I are completely in awe of this special girl. She is alert, healthy, and as cute as a button! Measuring at six pounds and 13 ounces of pure “lovableness,” she is by far my most beautiful blessing. I am so excited about having the privilege to celebrate my first Mother’s Day as Taylor Miriam’s very own mommy.
This gift was not just given without some labor on my part. Monday morning at around 4, I started experiencing contractions that were stronger than any of the Braxton-Hicks contractions I had before. They were irregular and felt like the worst menstrual cramps I could imagine. Needless to say, I did not go to work that morning. Instead, I stayed home to track whether these contractions grow more intense and closer together. The contractions wore off for most of the afternoon and came back stronger around 6 P.M. They lasted until midnight; however, they were still irregular.
I was awakened by a back-bending contraction at 1:30 A.M. The contractions grew closer together and were mostly five minutes apart for an hour. My husband and I drove to Ochsner Hospital to confirm whether labor was approaching. We discovered I was only two centimeters dilated, and the contractions started to become more irregular. I walked around the hospital with my husband for over an hour to try to entice active labor to come. The contractions were still irregular; however, they were stronger. When I returned to be assessed by the hospital’s Labor and Delivery assessment staff, I discovered that I was now three centimeters dilated. There was little progression, so I was sent home to wait for contractions that came every five minutes and lasted one full minute for a total of two hours. This was actually taught to me in the wonderful prenatal classes at Ochsner Hospital, but in the excitement of the morning I completely disregarded everything I was taught.
After 90 minutes of visiting with my parents, who just arrived at our home, the back-bending contractions turned into intense, stabbing contractions that were one to five minutes apart and lasted a minute or longer. We headed to the hospital and found out that I was now four centimeters dilated. The nurses started an IV and wheeled me into the LDR room (Labor, Delivery, and Recovery room). After I received fluids via the IV, I was given an epidural injection to ease the pain of the contractions. By this time, I had been in the hospital about 90 minutes. I was assessed by the awesome doctor on duty, who informed me I was now eight centimeters dilated. He called my wonderful ob/gyn, Dr. Candice M., to inform her that labor was nearing. I was so happy to see her an hour or so later. She informed me that I was now 10 centimeters dilated and ready to deliver. The excitement was overwhelming; I was both blessed to know my doctor was willing to deliver my daughter on her day off and excited to know I would soon see Taylor Miriam. Four contractions (20 minutes or so later), Taylor Miriam was in my arms and my husband, Marcus, was cutting our daughter’s umbilical cord.
The affection I had for my daughter suddenly deluged into an unconditional love that is so indescribable. After a second of being in her presence, I was ready to commit myself to providing her with everything she needed, despite any sacrifice. I was ready to devote myself to giving her the emotional, physical and spiritual support she needs to survive in this world that is not always friendly, fair or forgiving. Judging by the look of pure love and affection on my husband’s face, I knew without asking that he felt the same way.
Being able to call myself a mother is one of the greatest privileges that have ever been bestowed upon me. It is also a major responsibility that also requires a commitment to myself to promote and develop my own emotional, physical and spiritual states, in order to give Taylor Miriam my best.
Out of all the gifts my husband and I have received over the years, this by far is the most special.