At around 4 A.M. last May 7, I started having contractions, stronger than any Braxton-Hicks I had ever experienced. I stayed home from work to track whether they would grow more intense and closer together. They wore off for most of the afternoon, then came back stronger at 6 P.M., lasting until midnight.
At 1:30 A.M., I was awakened by a back-bending contraction. My contractions were five minutes apart for an hour. My husband, Marcus, drove me to the hospital, where we discovered I was only two centimeters dilated. We walked around the hospital for over an hour to entice active labor. The contractions were irregular, but stronger. I was now three centimeters dilated. I was sent home to wait for contractions that were every five minutes, lasting one minute, for a total of two hours.
At home, the back-bending contractions became intense, stabbing contractions one to five minutes apart, lasting a minute or longer. We headed back to the hospital and found out I was four centimeters dilated.
The nurses started an IV and wheeled me into Labor, Delivery and Recovery. After I received fluids, I was given an epidural for the pain. I had By Artina Taylor-Etienne Birth Story The best Mother’s Day gift been in the hospital about 90 minutes.
The doctor on duty said I was now eight centimeters dilated, and called my ob/gyn. I was so happy to see her an hour later. She said I was now ten centimeters dilated and ready to deliver. The excitement was overwhelming. I was both blessed my doctor was willing to deliver my daughter on her day off and excited I would soon see Taylor Miriam.
Four contractions and 20 minutes later, she was in my arms and Marcus was cutting the umbilical cord. The affection I had for my daughter suddenly deluged into an unconditional, indescribable love. After a second of being in her presence, I was committed to providing her with everything she would ever need, at any sacrifice. From the love on Marcus’s face, I knew he felt the same way.
Being able to call myself a mother is one of the greatest privileges ever bestowed upon me, and celebrating my first Mother’s Day as Taylor Miriam’s mommy was truly a gift.
youandyourfamily.com blogger Artina Taylor-Etienne is a teacher in New Orleans.