Mama was feeling fine; relatively pain free and resting nicely. The nurse had checked her while we had been at lunch and said that she had dilated to 9.5 centimeters. Another nurse came in and set up a table with many shiny, silver scissor- type-plier things (they all looked the same to me, but I was not the one about to deliver a baby). After another check, the nurse came back and said that the baby needed to "slide down" a bit more and she would return in thirty minutes. I love the "hurry up to wait" dance; and so we waited. After half an hour there were some practice pushes, and then another thirty minute "slide down" break. Remember we had all had our last minute bathroom visits? Yeh, not so much, there were plenty more trips and even a few minutes for me to finish that wilting salad.
Eventually, it was time. Mommy got some serious pushing going with her fantastic nurse and helpful coaches supporting her both physically and emotionally. There were pauses of seriousness and silence; mom would rest in between pushes and we would quietly watch the monitor waiting for the next contraction. Out of nowhere, the wrong bed button was activated and mid-push mom's bed was raised and elevated into some awkward contortion that sent us all into hysterical laughter. "I guess we didn't get far with that one" giggled the laboring mom.
Once it was clear that baby was soon to make his entrance, the nurse called the doctor on her fancy hospital phone. Enter the doctor donning her scrubs and it all seemed real. Personally, I was sympathetically pushing with mom the whole way. I had full blown tmj from gritting my jaw so tight with stress and anticipation.
And then, it happened: the baby joined the party. It was amazing! He was suddenly on his mommy's chest, the nurse was suctioning him and we heard the most beautiful cry you could ever imagine.
His beauty was/is overwhelming. I had tears and smiles as big as the moon; there is no way to describe how awe-inspiring it all was. A bit later after the siblings had joined the party and then left to let mom have some quiet, I sat quietly holding the clean and swaddled newborn. I said to mom "how was he inside of you less than two hours ago?" Just unbelievable.
As I drove home while talking (safely on my handsfree bluetooth) to our mutual dear friend in Ohio about the whole experience, I said, please don't repeat this to anybody, but "I am exhausted!". Not like I had just delivered a baby or anything.
As far as bucket list items go, I have to say that this one just about tops it off. It was an amazing and joyful day, I am so happy that I was included in this beautiful event.