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Googly stumped us again – The Birth Story

Now this doesn’t have that fairly tale quality, but let me try and recreate the events of between 18th and 20th September 2011. Because what transpired in those three days is what makes Vihaan’s birth story complete.

Just a reminder – Vihaan is sleeping now and I am stealing a moment to write this post. The narrative may seem disjointed depending on his slumber. So apologies right at the start…

So, I was scheduled for my post-37th week visit to the doctor on the 20th. The week before, on 13th, he’d asked me to get a CTG done (a test that measures the baby’s heart rate) on 18th and an ultrasound done on 19th. Happily, merrily I walked into the labour room of the Tinplate Hospital (where Vihaan was born) and propped myself unto a not so hygenic delivery bed to get the test done. I missed a baby’s birth, the mother was sleeping out of exhaustion and there was another woman in the throes of labour pains. Her soft moans made me want to go over and tell her that she must be strong…but I didn’t.

I have always loved hearing Vihaan’s heartbeat. It’s like the sound of a galloping horse that is marching onwards in its own rhythm. That day too, my mother sitting outside the labour room could her grandson’s march…loud and strong. We spoke about the baby’s heartbeat and then got back to the usual guess game in all good faith. The rest of the day passed without much action.

On 19th, I went for my USG at the appointed time. I wanted my mother who has never seen an USG (of a pregnant woman) to come in…but then not everything is possible everywhere. So there I went alone. The sonographer looked at Vihaan for a long time…when I asked him if all was good he said, ‘the liquor has reduced’! Liquor?? That’s the first time I heard the amniotic fluid being called by that name…anyways, I let it pass. He asked me to wait around for the report. While we were doing that, I was called in again…this time because a senior sonographer and doctor wanted to take a look at me. A little worried, I went in again…and she repeated the same thing. Something clicked, and I told her, “I have my doc’s appointment tomorrow evening. Is there any reason why I should see him today?” To which she added, “Yes, you must meet him today!” A soft alarm rang in my head…is this it??

(Vihaan gave a little lazy cry…must be a bad dream…patted him back to sleep)

So, yes…the first signs of faint nervous jitters ran through me. But I didn’t want to alarm my already alarmed mother and mother-in-law…so, calm and composed I got back home, called up the doc and took an appointment for the same evening.

At the doc’s, we realised I had started to reduce weight. My weight in the past 3 weeks had stayed at its point and had refused to budge…this slight drop in weight was out of sync. But it was really my USG report and check up that made the doctor decide that it was time. I knew it…my doctor made the necessary calls…wrote out the instructions for medicines and let us go. The baby had been breech for a while and this sudden drop in amniotic fluid called for an emergency c-section. I had mentally readied myself…just the thought of not having Aniruddha close to me at that moment hurt me terribly! I had dreaded this all along…and my worst fears were coming true! The father of my child was not there at the time of its birth…

Aniruddha was the first who I called. I think I sounded calm. But you’ll have to ask him how he felt when I broke the news to him. He was to come to town 4 days later. Tickets were done and he was infact on his way to Bangalore and Chennai for a quick two day business trip before he came. The news obviously got him to cancel his business trip…rushing to wifey and his baby was fast tracked!

The hospital was midway from my house and the doc’s chamber, and so I had to drop in and get admitted. My doctor had asked me to get two more CTG tests that night and I went on to get my first right away. My parents took back the report to the doctor, who called the hospital and asked me to take the test again later at 10:30pm. The test at 10:30 got the doctor to ask for another test at 1:30 am!! I knew I was going to have a baby the next day…sleep eluded me…and by the time the nurse came to wake me up at 1:15 am, I was wide awake! Since I was alone at the hospital that night, the nurses accompanied me to the labour room. Half way down, they found a wheelchair and I was asked to place myself in it!! I find wheelchairs scary…the first time I had got into one was when I had broken my leg 6 years back!! This experience didn’t change too many things…rickety and creaky, the wheelchair was deftly manouvered through the snoring, wheezing, darkened corridors of the hospital. I reached the labour room again. This time there were 3 women…two that had already delivered and a third whose baby was all eager to come out in the 7th month. The mother was put on drip and was being monitored through the night.

Once the test was done the nurse called up the doctor. He wanted to see the report! At 2 in the morning…I called up my dad at home and asked him to come over!! I waited for Baba to come, take the report to the doctor and call me back to tell me what the doctor said. “It’s okay as of now…there’ll be another CTG at 7 in the morning!” I called Aniruddha to tell him the mid night report was okay and there’s nothing to worry. But not ‘everything’ was right…

I hugged my belly and tried to put myself to sleep. But there was none that night! Before I knew it was 7 am and time for another CTG. This time I decided to walk it…the nurses were like, “Madam aaj aapko bachcha hoga!” As if I didn’t know!!

My Dad and brother were the first to come in. Next came Mommy and then my in-laws. I was asked to ‘shut up’ and talk little…my mother the ‘OT Veteran’ knew better! Anyways…I took a bath (knowing well that I’d have none of it in the next 10 days) and put myself to bed again. Last minute winks always work for me! At 10:30, the OT staff came to wheel me out. I had just about had a 30 minute nap and was feeling better already. So up I went on the stretcher…my entire family loomed before my eyes. Someone held my hand…someone my head…my cheek and even my feet, I think! Goodbyes, all the best and a ‘don’t worry’ later I was ready to roll. I shut my eyes…took a deep breath and said to myself, ‘Let’s do it’

The OT experience ended sooner than it began. My doctor during the operation told me that the baby’s heartbeat the evening before had dropped drastically. The fetal heart rate was so scary that he stayed up all night…there could have been a situation of midnight surgery! After the first two CTG reports the night before, the 2pm report was more stable. This was a miracle baby…a fighter…

Vihaan was born at 11: 14 am on 20th September 2011.

My anesthesist asked if I wanted a girl or a boy. “I always wanted a girl…but I know this one’s a boy!” They brought my wailing baby to me. He held on to his doctor’s finger tight…I stroked his belly and cheek and said…”Welcome to the world, my son!”

As I had hoped and prayed…Aniruddha was the first one to hold our son. A race from Delhi to Jamshedpur via Kolkata later, the father’s smile made up for all the post operative aches! 🙂

P.S: This post took me more than 10 days to write! I started it when I was in the hospital, got discharged and a week later, between snatches of stolen winks and marathon feeding sessions, I have finally managed to finish this!! This is perhaps and inkling of what’ll be the pattern…hopefully Vihaan will grow up to help me do this better!

Thank you all for the lovely wishes…Googly is as much yours as he is ours.

Sent from BlackBerry® on Airtel

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