Tuesday, May 7, 2013


On Friday night the contractions that have been coming and going for the past few weeks started coming more frequently and with increasing intensity.  I managed to sleep through the night (if you call getting up to pee 60 times between midnight and 10 "sleeping through the night") and Kurt and I made it to a couple's prenatal yoga class on Saturday.  The contractions continued throughout the day without regularity and got more and more painful.  We had tickets to see Jacques Pepin give a cooking presentation at The Valley Arts Center in Northridge at 8pm.  I knew we were taking a gamble when we bought the tickets considering it was the night before I was actually due.  But I keep being told I will go past my due date by ten days most likely, so I figured we'd be safe.  And Pepin is one of Kurt's heroes, so we wanted to at least make an attempt.  My parents' flight got in around 6pm, so we had just enough time to drop my car off with them and head up to Northridge.

On the way to Northridge my good friend, Annie called to check in.  She has two kids.  She wanted to know how I was doing.  "Well," I said, "if I wasn't pregnant, I'd be about to have the most epic period of my life."  "Dude, that's labor," said she.  She urged me to download a contraction timer app (yes, there's an app for that), to Google the nearest hospital, you know, just in case, and to keep her posted.  I did what she asked, even though I was sure I was imagining the whole thing.  If I really were in labor it would mean I'd most likely be delivering on my actual due date, something that only happens 5% of the time. 

It was not happening.

I spent most of the presentation concentrating on what was going on in my body, trying not to distract Kurt too much.  He kept half an eye on me, but frankly, watching Jacques Pepin debone a chicken in 3 minutes is pretty difficult to compete with.  The baby could have been crowning and I don't think it would have done much to sway Kurt's focus.  I don't blame him.  Jacques Pepin is a fucking kitchen god.

As soon as the presentation was over, I called my midwife and told her what was going on.   Her expert medical advice was to take a bath, have a big glass of wine and try to get some sleep.  Considering the task ahead, rest was going to be pretty important.  I got off the phone and burst into tears.

It was happening.

When we got home, we prepared the bed with two sets of sheets (the good ones under the crappy ones with a layer of wee wee pads in between), put the tarp and towels under the birthing tub and set up the lighting I wanted in the room where I was planning on doing the bulk of the laboring.

I took a bath, drank a glass of red wine through a bendy straw and went to bed.

But here's the thing, when the possibility of bringing a new human into this world THE NEXT DAY is on the table, there's not enough wine om the planet to put you out.  Even after the contractions stopped, I laid in bed, tossing and turning.  Around 2 a.m, I resigned myself to a night of no sleep, got up, made myself some food and watched TV.  Finally, some time after 4, with the contractions completely stopped, I fell asleep. 

It was not happening.

At 7:30 I woke up with another contraction. 

It was finally happening.  For real this time.

I ate some breakfast, took a shower and blow dried my hair.  Because God only knows what my face will look like after hours of natural labor, but at the very least I can make sure my hair is did.  Priorities, people.

Once my hair was done I did the next logical thing.  I fell asleep.

And now, here it is, more than two days after the call to the midwife and nothing is doing.  The best thing to do is to keep myself distracted, go to yoga, go to the movies (Ben Kingsley is out of control goood in Iron Man 3), half-heartedly write blog entries, but of course the ONLY thing I'm thinking about is what might happen any minute and what will definitely happen some time in the next 12 days.  Kurt is also trying to stay distracted, though, with a job that's easier than it is for me.  He can't wait to be a dad and put tiny socks on our baby.

Meanwhile, Krumholtz continues to stretch his/her tiny little butt and legs and I look like the dude from Total Recall right before Quato comes bursting out of his abdomen.  "Open your vagina.  Open your vagiiiiiiiiiiina."

Incidentally, one of the best pieces of advice I've gotten was to tell people my due date was two weeks later than it actually was so that people wouldn't start bugging me around my due date.  I REALLY wish I had listened to that one.  I now consider the "Is it happening?" phone call to be even worse than the "Did you know you look just like Lena Dunham?" phone call.

Also, I'ma let you finish, but here's a picture of me last Friday eating a tangerine in the pool like a boss.

Photo by Nia Renee Hill