Your Birth Story, from Dad’s perspective. ( Kinda Long )
March 27th started off just like almost every other Saturday, spring was in effect, trees were in bloom, the sun was out, birds were chirping and it was finally warm enough for taxi drivers to blast their crappy music with the windows rolled down.
Your mom was in the middle of getting her company off the ground and I was eager to help out in any way I could and seeing that for the most part everything your mom does requires internet access and we only had the one laptop, we went for mid morning stroll from our place in Carroll Gardens/Red Hook area to my office in Dumbo so we could both use internet at the same time thus increasing her companies productivity and relieving some stress from her. It honestly was a real nice walk, and we talked about some pretty cool stuff, but mainly about becoming parents any day.
We got to the office and went about our mission of getting stuff done for the company and at around 3ish your mom felt what she thought was a kick, or in your case a ninja judo chop! It was stronger than usual but it was dismissed as you moving around.
Later on around 4 it happened again. Your mom turned to me, starred me right in the face as if she was either going to kill me or puke all over me and said with the utmost conviction “ I am going to have this baby tonight” to which I thought “ cool cause her feet really can’t get any bigger” but said “ok babe” to let her know that I was going to be right there to help her. We finished up a few more things off the to do list and around 5pm ish headed home.
An ongoing debate your mother and I have is, what is the fastest way to and from the office. I say through Carroll Gardens, through, Brooklyn Heights, through Cadmen Plaza and then into Dumbo. She says, Furman street along the water. That day we came to a logical mutual compromise and took Furman st. Which is a straight shot with no lights and almost no traffic right to Columbia st.
Which I got to say is Effin dangerous! People drive like jackasses. Anyways as we crossed Atlantic Ave onto Columbia your mom practically doubled over in pain and gave me that same look and repeated that she “was having this baby tonight” followed by “ I WANT ICE CREAM”. Cinnamon bun Ben and Jerry’s is quite possibly the best flavor of anything ever! We ate our ice cream and decided to watch a little tv to relax, we got about all of 6 minutes into an episode of House when I heard a sequence of words that on some level I knew I would hear sooner or later, but your mom said “ Mark I think my water just broke” so casually and with such peace without the panic and hypertension one would think to expect to accompany these words that she may have well said “can you turn up the volume” cause it really didn’t sink in immediately. But the second time she said it I literally felt the blood drain out of my face, my eyes dilate and my stomach tighten into a knot as your mom went into the bathroom to examine herself. I then heard probably to most unromantic thing ever “ Yeah my mucus plug came out„, wanna see it?” I so did, so I did.
So by about 7PM ish it was official, we were going to be parents really soon so what did we do next? Laundry of course! What else were going to wear? I was making my way downstairs with some laundry and ran into our friend Shal who lived 2 doors down and oddly enough„ also needed to do laundry. We rolled into the Laundromat in style with Shal’s kick ass granny cart and got cracking on laundry, at about 930pm, your mom, still pregnant had one last monster food craving and must have spent 40$ in pizza, garlic knots and salad and went home to start eating while I folded the laundry. The lady that runs the Laundromat was used to seeing me there doing laundry but this time she noticed that I was folding clothes that were not only my style but way„, way too small for me, she approached me and said, “I didn’t know you had a daughter” “ not yet, but maybe in a few hours” “ What?? I don’t understand” “the girl I was with, that is my wife and her water broke earlier this evening” “ don’t you need to go to the hospital???” “ No I need to finish folding this laundry and get home to my wife, we are having a home birth” The conversation dragged on a little bit longer but basically she could not believe that 1.this little girl was pregnant, 2. About to pop and 3 that we were doing laundry and so calm about everything.
10PM, I get back to the apartment, Shal is there with your mom, we sat around talking about stuff and exchanging laughs and eating until shall decided she should get going and let us do our thing. She left and your mom and I locked eyes, we didn’t say a word to each other and we didn’t need to, we both knew that all of the research and preparation, all the reading, the classes and the mental build up for a home birth was happening, pretty much now and that we were ready for whatever that was coming our way. With that look, both your mom and I were able to relax a bit, and at about 11PM sit down and resume watching House!
11:04 Ohh that was a good one!
11:07 Mark this is it, call the Doula!
What is a water birth if there is no water? Dining room table, gone! Chairs, gone! Dog (mine) locked up!
The next hour or so until Johanna our doula arrived for me was a carefully orchestrated balancing act between comforting your mother, ensuring Johnny the dog that mommy was going to be ok, hanging sheets over the kitchen windows, filling a birthing tub with water using a large mixing bowl and a larger sized pot in a rotation as to fill it up asap (I used extremely hot water because we knew your mom wasn’t going in right away) and most importantly being there for your mom to have my hand to squeeze the ever living shit out of.
Johanna arrived and as we were talking to the midwife on the phone she noticed that you were indeed going to be giving birth a lot sooner than we anticipated, she instructed me to resume filling that tub, around 130-145 Cara our midwife showed up and within minutes we had your mom in the water. The labor pains kept coming and going and we were all doing our best to comfort and support your mom, (Johnny was howling the whole time) oddly enough I’m the only one that got a round-house kick to the jaw as your mom slipped in the plastic kiddy pool we were using as a birthing tub. No time for pain here I resumed holding your moms legs until she decided to kneel to be in a better position for you to come out into the world.
2:27 AM March 28th 2010, you were born, 5pounds 5 ounces, calm as can be and alert to almost everything that was going on. It’s really hard to write this without tearing up a little which is probably why I have put it off for so long but when I said Hi to you for the first time ever you turn right at me and starred right in my eyes as if to say, hey! I know you! I then got to cut your umbilical chord and eventually hold you for the first time ever. Pure Magic. The rest of the morning went on with a little clean up here and a little bite to eat there but for the most part after your mom was all taken care of we just wrapped you up and laid in bed with you for almost an eternity. It was an amazing day, but then again, since you have joined us on the outside, everyday is an amazing day!