Tuesday, May 12, 2009

To My Little Girl

She was ten days late.

Every time I thought I was having a contraction, it turned out to be a false alarm. My husband had taken off an entire week from work around her due date and for that entire week, we sat and waited. Nothing.

The doctor told us that ten days past the due date was long enough - it was time to help our little girl (though we didn't know it was a girl at the time) come into the world.

I went into the hospital at 7 p.m. that night. They gave me a drug to induce labor. My husband stayed with me in the room, though the foolish hospital policy wouldn't let him sleep on the bed. So he slept on the chair.

At 4:30 a.m., I woke up. The pain was already substantial. I called my mom and dad at home.

"It's time," I said.

"We'll be right there," Dad said.

The nurse came in, told me to get up, walk around, take a shower. The pain started to increase. Finally, I walked down to the delivery room, my husband by my side.

The next few hours are a blur. I remember falling asleep through some of the contractions. The pain was so bad, I couldn't believe I'd wanted to do this whole thing naturally - no epidural (no way was someone putting a needle in my spine!) and no drugs. Finally, I couldn't take it anymore and asked for some pain relief. It did nothing.

I formulated my own way for getting through the contractions. I held my arms out and made fists, over and over, getting through each excruciating moment. At one point, I didn't want my husband to touch me. He told me later that he went out to the waiting room where my parents were and said, "I don't know what to do. She won't let me touch her."

Strange what we do when we're in the midst of such pain.

And then it was time to push. My husband was right there beside me, holding my hand, telling me, "As soon as the baby comes, all the pain will disappear."

I clung to that hope. And pushed some more.

First the head, then the rest of the body, and my daughter was born.

My husband was right. The pain disappeared. And after awhile, they brought my beautiful little girl to me. When I held her in my arms, I realized all that pain had been worth it. And I would do it all over again for my daughter.

That was 9 years ago. Hard to believe that tiny little baby is now a rambuctious little girl, full of life and humor and empathy and creativity and so, so much more.

Happy birthday to my beloved daughter! I love you.

14 comments:

  1. Oh Melissa, you've made me boo-hoo! What a sweet and love-filled post.

    Happy Day, Big Girl! May you always be blessed, honey.

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  2. I see where she gets her beauty! Great reminder about pain sometimes bringing beauty and personal growth. :)

    Happy Birthday Mini Melissa!

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  3. It's so true, how all the pain is just forgotten once that amazing new life is in our hands. A touching story, many birthday wishes for your beautiful daughter, have a happy day!

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  4. That is a beautiful post.

    A very very happy birthday to your beautiful daughter!

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  5. Hope she has a wondeful b-day! Did you get the Bolt packback? :)

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  6. What a lovely post.

    Happy Birthday from me too.

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  7. Oh, Melissa, you and I are in such synch.

    My twin boys were born many years before your beautiful little girl, but on the same day. I had Mother's Day in Hospital.

    I can't imagine how life was before I became a mother, can you?

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  8. Birthdays are the best. Hope she has a great one and you too!

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  9. Beautiful post, Melissa. Happy day to both of you!

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  10. Happy Birthday to a lucky loved little girl!

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  11. Geez, I can't believe she's nine already. She wasn't even potty trained when we first started talking. She sure is a cutie.

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  12. Oh she's so cute! Happy Birthday to your sweetheart! :D

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  13. Aww, happy birthday to your daughter; she looks so lively in this photo. And what a beautiful story your post contains - although we already know the ending, it doesn't mean we don't want to hear it again and again...

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  14. Thanks, all, for your lovely comments! It was a wonderful day.

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