I’m going to skip the labour and delivery for now, because so much happened and there’s loads to talk about and if I don’t start on the stuff that’s happened since, I might never catch up. I might come back to it.
But to put it simply, on 15th December, at about 4am, I was sat in the delivery room, alone, worried sick about Jess, and I didn’t yet know whether Matilda had been born yet and whether she was okay. It was early in the morning, so there was no one awake to talk to. All I could do was wait.
About half an hour later, our midwife wheeled in a cot, told me some information about the birth, but had to rush straight back off to see to Jess. I had no information about her, and this just fuelled my worry, but I had to put this worry aside. In front of me was a tiny, bundle of towels, from which I heard a little cry. I peered in, and there she was, our daughter, sheer perfection.
I don’t have much experience with babies, and all of a sudden I was responsible for a living person. I felt like I had to ask if I was allowed to pick her up to settle her, but I soon realised that she was mine. I kept her wrapped up, because I wanted Jess to be the first skin she touched, and she hadn’t met her yet.
A little while passed, and the midwife came in to tell me that Jess was awake, and that she was doing well, and ready to see us. So I put Matilda in her crib, and pushed her to the recovery room where Jess was waiting.
I will never forget Jess‘s face when we first entered the room. A memory that I will forever cherish. It was a look of relief, of pain, and most of all of love and adoration. The midwife unwrapped the baby, and passed her to Jess for her first skin to skin, and her first feed. We had chosen to breast feed her, but she was born with a tongue tie, so we knew it might be a challenge, but the first feed was a success.
We went back to the delivery suite while Jess rested for a bit, before gathering our things and moving up to a ward. It was quite early in the day, and I was allowed to stay till the end of visitation at 8pm which I was happy about. Especially since Jess was bed bound for a little while, so I could help with things like changing. That was fun, but that’s another post!
We announced Matilda‘s birth, with her looking beautiful and pure in white, and everyone welcomed her to the world with lovely words of support. Everyone loved her name, as did we.
Jess was told the criteria that she had to meet before she was allowed to go home, such as standing and walking. If I was going home at 8pm, she had to also be able to feed and change Matilda over night while I was gone. The end of visitation was fast approaching, and Jess had still not managed to stand up. But she wasn’t staying in any longer than she had to, and with sheer determination and the help of me and our midwife, she stood up and was walking around, pushing through the pain.
Unfortunately, I had to leave. It felt so strange going home to an empty house, knowing I had a little family at the hospital just waiting to come home with me. But I made sure Nala was fed and that she had some time out of her hutch, as she was on her own a lot over the last few days. I cleaned up a bit and made sure the house was ready. Jess sent me regular updates throughout the night, with photos of our baby and how they were both doing, but I eventually got some sleep.
By the time I came back the next morning, she had made so much progress. She had packed a bag and got herself and Matilda ready. She was adamant that she was leaving. And to our surprise, she was actually discharged, only 1 day after a c-section. Her determination had paid off. It was time to go home.