Saturday, July 17, 2010

My Baby Boy Turns 17

Happy Birthday Wesley!

Wesley has always been very active, even in the womb. He used to kick, turn somersaults and every once in a while jam his feet into my pelvis and stretch up as far as his little body could go... as he got bigger this became harder for him and some time in the last month of pregnancy, unbeknown to us, all of his antics got him stuck. On my bladder to be exact, with his umbilical cord wrapped around his shoulders.

Being trapped made him "late" and I was induced 10 days after my due date. The medication worked wonders and within six hours I was beginning transition labour which I am told is the final, shortest and most rewarding stage of childbirth. However 12 hours later I was still in transition - fully dilated but the baby hadn't moved. Then his heart rate started dropping and it became apparent that something was really wrong. I was pretty out of it by this time but I do remember the flurry of activity as the town hospital tried to prepare a surgical team at 1:30am and by the time I was wheeled into the Operating Room his heart beat was not above 16 beats per minute. I felt like I was observing everything from a detached, safe distance. Until that moment I hadn't even considered not coming home with a baby.

My GP was there with me, standing beside me stroking my forehead, while the OB started the C-Section. Then words I never dreamed I would hear came out of my OB's mouth - "Oh MY GOD look at this bladder!" Apparently as he made the incision my bladder finally succumbed to all the pressure and was ejected out of my body. I recall my GP soothing me with "Don't worry about it, we'll talk about it later." It wasn't too long before they had pulled Wesley out - but instead of any kind of crying there was just my GP with new words to combat my immediate panic "Just let us do our jobs right now" and they whisked him away. My baby was blue, he wasn't breathing or moving. I wasn't breathing either.

They suctioned him, he finally breathed and colour returned to him and to my world. As he cried for the first time I felt a joy that leapt up inside of me and chased all the demons away. He was alive, I was alive, we had clearly both been given a second chance. It wasn't all easy right away, things like incubators and heart monitors dominated for a while but in the end I got to take my baby boy home to flourish.

On his birthday I can't help but think about the story of his entrance into the world with retroactive awe at the role that fate plays in our lives. Things can change so quickly, certain decisions have outcomes you wouldn't have predicted and nothing is ever as simple as it first seems. I also marvel at the power and will of life itself - given the right chance life will always find a way.

17 years later I can't even begin to explain how happy I am that I am wishing him a happy birthday. Happy birthday Wesley!


bertie said...

What a wonderful story.Yes happy birthday for sure Wesley

Patsplace said...

Yes, indeed. A very happy Birthday from Powell River, BC.