After almost exactly 40 weeks, the journey of my pregnancy was finally coming to an end.  I was starting to wonder if I would ever want to do this again.  Conor and I had been waiting for my cervix to dilate on its own since the day before.  We had gone to the hospital on the 16th and decided to come home and not induce.  Of course, as soon as I got home the contractions started coming on with a vengeance and I could not sleep.

We were in labor all night and my cervix was dilating very slowly.  Conor was persistent with helping me walk around, breathe, and squat.  We were so anxious!! Luckily, we did not have to introduce pitosin as my body was progressing on its own very slowly.  Due to doctor’s advice and Gabe’s position, (he was sunny-side-up), she suggested I be cut slightly and the baby be pulled out with forceps.  My frame was just too small to deliver this 7 pounds of human.

When Gabriel 1st saw the light at 9:09 A.M. on September 17th, he was immediately taken to a table and a series of procedures was performed by 6 nurses.  Conor stood close by staring in amazement.  I had never seen the expression on his face before.  Since I couldn’t see Gabe, I just looked at Conor.  I thought, “Oh no, the baby’s going to think that all these strangers are his mommies!”  The doctor was sewing me up and doing things to me that I’d rather not know about.  I was starting to wonder if I would ever get to hold my baby boy.  I kept telling Conor, “Touch him!”  I wanted to make sure that he knew that we were his parents.  I was in some sort of shock, an almost numb feeling…maybe it was the epidural or maybe I’m experiencing post-partum depression already!

And then…just then, after a grueling 15 minutes, Conor carried the baby over and put him in my arms.  Then it sunk in and flooded me like a tidal wave of unbelievable emotion.  “He’s so cute.  Isn’t he cute baby?  I can’t believe how cute he is!”  I kept saying over and over.  I did not expect THIS to come out of me.  He was PERFECT!!!!

He was still trying to open his eyes from the antibiotics they had squirted in them.  I wanted to wipe it out but, I knew that he needed it.  And I was experiencing my first stages of true motherhood. Over the next several hours, Conor and I were in a state of disbelief.  Every so often, I would look at Conor and he would start crying.  “I can’t believe how much love I have for him,” he said.  I knew exactly how he felt.  How was it possible?

Over the next couple of days of recovery in the hospital, I couldn’t stop staring at him.  I thought to myself, “I would do anything for him.”  And how bizarre that was since I could never say that about anyone and I had not even known him for 48 hours. I knew that I had changed already.  It was almost too much to deal with.

This last week, Conor and I have been experiencing our new bundle of life.  He is fascinating! He is striking!  He is cranky and hard to figure out.  And he is easily appeased and so peaceful at the same time.  He is extremely gassy and he has this incredible little squeak that I can’t get enough of.  We have struggled through breast feeding.  I have been willing to go through pain to make sure that he is fed.  What is it about this baby that makes me so unselfish and self-sacrificing?  But, we have finally figured out together.  He has already started to heal me from the inside out.

I have never seen this side of Conor.  He has been there for me in ways that I never thought were possible for him.  My love for him has more than doubled when I look in Gabriel’s eyes.  Conor is the best dad I have ever know.  Like me, he can not stop holding him and gazing at him.  He wants to bathe him and change his diaper and he is so patient when he cries.

The other night he read Gabriel a bedtime story…already.  He just can’t wait to spend that kind of time with him.  Every day we are learning how to take care of little Gabriel.  I can’t stop taking pictures of him.  I was always annoyed at moms who snap a million pics and can’t delete a one.  Now I know how they feel. I now know!

How did I ever live without him?