|Cover for my new book by Neil Griffiths – coming later this year.|
|Tooter, from Tooter’s Stinky Wish, by Brian Cretney, published by Fitzhenry and Whiteside, now available for pre-order!|
|Sacré-Coeur Basilica by my 5-year old son who is obsessed with Parisian architecture, but not the modern stuff – the old stuff. We are working on a book together called The Platypus in Paris. I get to draw the platypus.|
This time last year I was pacing. In Labour. We had come home after spending the afternoon with our midwife, with instructions to have a glass of wine, some gravol and to get some sleep (my choice, in order to avoid the hospital and morphine). In hopes that our little girl would decide to flip in the night. A week long back labour – wrapping up. I was ready. Mo was dropped off at a friends house. The closing ceremonies for the Olympics on the TV. Me in the tub, trying desperately to find some measure of comfort in the 3 minutes I had between each contraction.
Then the voice from downstairs. Shawn. “Peg, We should go. They are really, really close together.” Bags packed – again – we headed to the car. What ensued was a car ride I will never, ever forget. 170 kms an hour, I almost ripped off the fabric on the top of my car. The baby had seemingly flipped, and was trying to get out. We were 57 kms from the nearest hospital. My car has never gone that fast, nor had we ever run so many red lights. Thankfully, it was 3 am. I remember Shawn asking me if we should stop at the rest stop on the 401 to call an ambulance. I remember thinking, ‘ holy crap, we are going to have this baby in the car.’ but not telling him.
The rest was right out of a movie. We pull up, crooked, in front of the hospital (the car stayed there till 7 am with no ticket). A wheelchair shoved at us as we came in and a dude who looked a little tipsy – saying – ‘Hey, you are the 5th one tonight!’. And so I was. We are flying down the hallway to the elevator, the wheelchair is collapsing, shawn is running and my feet are dragging underneath. I can feel the giant bag of ‘birthing stuff’ I thought I’d need, massage oils, snacks – etc – bouncing behind Shawn. I am laughing hysterically and puffing at the same time. As the elevator door closes, I see our midwife running down the hall shouting – “I am here!”.
We get to Connell 5 and a nurse asks me how dilated I am. Now that is a heck of a question. Most women I know do not know that info at the time, unless you have just been checked. Then I hear her tell the midwife there are no more rooms. So, into an assessment room we go – where we stayed till 9 the next morning.
I was pretty dedicated to a drug-free birth this time after what happened the first time, and thankfully there was no time for all of that anyway. It was go time. With no drip bag holder available, by hubby held the antibiotics up in one arm, while mopping my brow and feeding me ice. I am pretty sure he had eight arms that night. I loved him before then, but after that – he rocks my world.
Our little girl was ushered into the world that morning, 10lbs, 1 oz. With a broken collarbone and a need to be in ICU for almost a week. Time for us both to repair. I felt good. I felt strong. I felt lucky.
ICU is a hopeful, miraculous and very sad place.
Since then, she has not stopped moving. She is so tough. She rolled at 3.5 months and got around that way – until she started to crawl at 5.5 months – walking at 9.5 months and now she is unstoppable.
Tonight she tried to climb up her high chair for dinner, and then tried to climb in the tub for her bath.
Something tells me I will be chasing this little monkey around for the rest of my life.
Happy Birthday dear daughter. I love you.