From our hospital window you could see the Catholic School across the street. It was lunch time and all the children were running, singing, and playing St. Patrick’s Day games. A large Leprechaun mural was the backdrop. I never thought it would happen, but it’s fitting that we would have a child on St. Patrick’s Day. We have quite a bit of Irish in our family. My husband’s family still has land there. They are huge Notre Dame fans. And now we’ve got our lucky baby boy to make it all the more special.
Luke is our second born, so I knew what I was getting myself into. With his older brother, I had a very drawn out 23-hour labor with 2 hours of pushing and an un-anesthetized episiotomy. To say I was a bit concerned with the amount of pain coming my way would be fair.
Luke was due on March 14th. His brother had come early (by one minute!) so I never really thought about Luke being born after his due date. St. Patrick’s Day never even crossed my mind. Let’s face it: by 8 months along I was praying fervently that he would come just a bit early. Not so early that his lungs would be underdeveloped, of course, but please, soon, God, soon.
So, when a few days before his due date I started having contractions, I was elated. But, Luke was just messing with me.
“But Doctor,” I said, “I know what real contractions are!”
Really? Hadn’t I done this before? I felt so stupid.
Then, two days later, more contractions. This was it!
Are you kidding me? My baby and my body had betrayed me. I had a minor meltdown. The doctor and my husband reassured me that he’d have to come out sooner or later, and I waddled out of the doctor’s office for the second time. I bought a green onesie just in case he decided to wait THAT long. Surely, I wouldn’t need it--I realize now that the 5 days that take place in this story are not, in fact, a long time, but try telling that to a 10-month pregnant woman.
Early on St. Patrick’s Day morning contractions started coming again. This time, I knew it was real. Good thing I bought that green onesie. We got to the hospital around 6 AM. I was definitely in labor this time, but only dilated to 3.5 centimeters. I worried I had, like last time, another 23 hours ahead of me.
But the luck of the Irish was with me. By the time my contractions were really uncomfortable I was able to get a spinal block. By12:15 it had worn off, and I was ready to push. At 12:35 our beautiful baby boy was here. Only 20 minutes of pushing! The reward for my patience.
The first thing I said to him as he was laid on my chest was, “What a good little boy!” My labor had been beautiful. Not easy, grant you, but beautiful. And even more beautiful--my St, Patrick’s Day baby.
Thanks for sharing, Sarah!