Sneak Peek…and a little announcement!
Updated: Aug 6, 2021
Over the course of the last three years, I’ve shared little hints and snippets across all platforms of There Go My Marbles about a big project I’ve been working on. I want to be sure that you, dear reader, are in the loop, so I’ll be adding some of the social media posts here on the blog.
Here is an excerpt from Chapter 2 from my novel-in-progress, A Thousand Reasons Why:
The nurse assured me they would be monitoring me all night long and would be in the instant my contractions got too close again. I tossed and turned every 20 minutes, trying to get comfortable, trying to relax and sleep a little. Casey was softly snoring on the cot next to me. We both had had a long night. I watched the clock tick by from 2 am til 5 am. Every time I would start to doze off, something would wake me and I would have to start all over again - look at the clock, look at the contraction monitor connected to me, look at Casey to see if he was awake, and then settle down to fall back asleep.
But now, it was 5am, and I was beginning to feel more pressure, more often. Was I in labor? Like REAL labor? Why haven’t the nurses come in? Do they know? Aren’t they seeing the waves on the monitor at the nurses station? Where is everyone?! I glanced over at Casey - still fast asleep. Should I wake him? I don’t want to scare him!
All of a sudden an overwhelming urge to use the bathroom overtook me. Was this the Transition Phase I had read about in that book about what to expect during labor? I fumbled for the Nurse’s call button and buzzed the nurse. No answer. Where IS everyone?! The hall outside my room which was typically buzzing with activity no matter what time of day was eerily quiet.
I buzzed again, the sense to “go” overtaking my body. Finally someone answered. “Hi, do you need something?”
“Um, I think I’m having contractions…..”
“Ok, things look good out here. How often are you feeling them?”
“Like every 5 minutes, although now it might be like 2?”
“Ok, well we’re not seeing that out here. We’ll keep an eye on it and see.”
I’ve always been one to not question authority, keep my head down, and do what I’m told. But at this point, I had to say something. I buzzed again.
“Um, I feel like I have to push…”
“What do you mean?”
“I mean I think I am in labor and I feel like I have to push!” I shouted frantically.
“Um, ok, well, you can’t push. You can’t have that baby yet. Just a ,minute, I’ll be in to check…”
In 30 seconds, the lights were on and a team of nurses and doctors were in my room. I felt like I was in a dream. Nurses were trying to keep me calm as activity buzzed all around me. My mind began to shut down. In my head, I was screaming, Help, Help, what is happening to my baby! It’s too soon!! Waves of mind-altering pain racked my body as it prepared itself to give birth to this tiny person.
Casey was wide awake now and really confused about what was happening. A nurse explained the baby was coming, and so he got into position by my side to coach me.
Now someone was helping me scoot my bottom to the end of the birthing bed, legs up in stirrups, and nurses encouraging me to push NOW! I was so scared. It was going to hurt, so i pushed a little bit. I didn’t know what I was doing. We didn’t have time to go to birthing classes. I was going off of what i had seen in movies and tv shows!!
“Come on, Julee, I know you can do better than that! Now give us a big push - everything you got!”
And so I went for it...3 pushes later, our baby entered the world. There was a mad dash to the other side of the room. The delivery doctor told us they had to work on him...wait - “What did we have? Boy or girl?”
“Oh! You are the proud parents of a beautiful baby boy! He’s very tiny and so we’ve got him on the warming bed, and are checking to make sure everything’s ok.” Casey and I Looked at each other, tears streaming down our faces with joy and worry at the same time. We had a son!
Then, more people were coming into room, connecting and unconnecting wires and things, and then rushing the warming bed out of the room. “Wait! Where are you taking my baby? I want to see him!!”
“We have to take him to the NICU immediately and get him in an isolette to keep him warm and continue monitoring him. Let’s get you cleaned up, and rested, and you can see him later. Dad, you can follow us to the NICU.”
And with that they all left, except for a nurse or two who helped with the aftermath of the birthing process. I again felt like i watching a movie. This wasn’t me. This wasn’t happening. I felt disconnected and alone - empty. I let them clean me up and tell me what was happening, and to rest. I’d be able to see our baby in a little bit. I heard them but it was just voices and sounds swirling around my head. They left, and I fell in and out of a restless sleep for the next couple of hours, fatigued physically from the process of childbirth, but mentally restless and anguished about my new baby and the future. I just wanted to hold him and look at him.