Day 389. Nearly has already passed (Rebeka’s birth)
I just couldn’t not reading it straight away. You know, I talk about you on the day about birth, I nearly always remember to. With regards to Rebeka as well. What reminds me to you is – the image: you are standing, roaring like a lion besides the giant mattress full of children filling nearly the whole room – when I bring (well, used to bring) an example to how similar the noises of making love and giving birth are. That children don’t wake up for the sounds of birth if they are sleeping together with the parents as the voices are all familiar just louder. But if they sleep separately then they will surely wake up for the unfamiliar noises of birth.
Sure, we should do a birth discussion. I happily go back there. Although I don’t remember any more than what you put down and exactly the way you wrote it (which is not at all surprising with us it seems), if we think about “She grew up” and “A mother is born”. Surely I don’t remember parts like you putting your feet on my back, only the rest of it and that it was such a very-very good being there, very-very short but still not bad (it was often bad being at a short birth, somehow like if I missed the introduction into a new Initiation, and with you I didn’t need that any more, I stepped in and I was there – it was an added value to it. I could say so much more.
And that when people will read the story of Rebeka (and look at the beautiful picture with it), they won’t know what SNS is. What shall we do with this? Do you have any idea? Footnotes don’t suit the “A tale a day”. Or do you know what? People should just look it up!
Hugs to you. And how good it would be to be with you, all of you again just once more. I am close to tears now.
I woke up at night and couldn’t get back to sleep just as it’s been like that for many months. I got up and decided that I am not willing to either cook or catch up with my backlog of emails or do any other work. I will give this night to myself and do what I feel like doing: put all the birth stuff together so they are at hand (even though I definitely have two more weeks left…) and clean the SNS. I set to do it.
Oh, I see, I’m having Braxton-Hicks contractions with this as well! How nice they are! I pay attention to inside. Yes, these are Braxton-Hicks. How much I love to feel this power! How much I love handing myself to it, the way it pulls me and allows me to fly. I pack, I ache, I smile and I enjoy being alone. Packing done. Everything is nice, clean, tidy, soft. I go to do the washing.
I have been postponing to face SNS. I remember that washing the SNS is a rubbish job: slow and monotone. I grab it, unscrew it, squeeze some washing up liquid into it, put it back, screw it back, turn it over, press it… Rubbish?? This?? But I love this! I am going to have a baby! I love washing the SNS, I love breastfeeding!! I’m washing one after the other (the third baby deserves three of them!) and the milk holding pot as well, I’m turning them all upside down on the ironed diaper.
Contractions come and go. Nice ones. The ones that already pull and make you fly but just about painful. Braxton-Hicks. Nothing will happen here for another two weeks for sure. The washing up is ready, everything is ready for welcoming the baby. The only thing we miss is the electric heater. We’ll get hold of one. We have two weeks to go. Nojka is coming over today to discuss the setup with the children during labour, I’ll ask from them: they surely have one. I become sleepy, I go to bed and sleep until the morning.
Gábor goes for shopping to the market in the morning. He said he’s keeping labour in mind when shopping. Fine. Go.
It’s the three of us with the children in the meantime, waiting for Nojka and her family to arrive. We go down to the garden, that’s where we are waiting for them. It’s March, the sun is out and it’s unusually hot. I even take off my jumper and enjoy sunbathing. Nojka and co arrive. It will be so good to be with them! They ring the bell, I go for the gate but a contraction slows me down, nearly stops me – but no, I can still walk although slowly. It’s only Braxton-Hicks. Well, with such a big belly nothing can be done in a hurry, hold your horses, they’ll wait, I’ll reach the gate in this pace as well. Nojka’s cuddle is really nice: a female cuddle, it feels so good. Slowly with every movement because I’m in pain. What can I do? I’ve got only two weeks till birth!
We enjoy the day, chat a little, then I get into the topic: how shall it be with the children when I am giving birth, I can’t talk about anything else. We talk everything through. I feel safe.
If any of the children wants anything Zoli is ready to jump and asks if I want him to go. No worries, I can get up from the ground, I shouldn’t be lazy, coming! I slowly trot into the house to bring the mat that was asked for. A contraction on the way there. This is doing it all day, doesn’t it! When I set to return Nojka comes in. It’s the two of us, no one sees us. I can’t resist the temptation of leaning her for a cuddle, I fly a little but feel embarrassed of all this.
Because it’s only Braxton Hicks, why make such a big fuss of all this. But I can see on Nojka that she doesn’t mind being with me like this. This relieves my embarrassment a little. It was nice. I worry that someone else sees me too so we smile at each other and I take the mat. I can’t walk without the pulling feeling any more – slowly, I will get there anyway!
Gábor gets home. I get to him surprisingly fast. He tells me all the things he brought, yummy things for the labour for Ági and Éva. He asks how I’ve been: fine, I say, it hurts, Braxton Hicks are coming and going and that everything is fine at home.
It turned noon, the children became hungry, we go up for lunch. I cooked yesterday for the two families but Gábor starts frying the meat he brought to make sure it’s enough. In the meantime I warm up the meal, put too much salt on something, guide the children, set the table. When a contraction comes I slow down and enjoy flying with it. When it stops I go back to my business. We sit down and eat. Then clean the table. The four kids run to continue playing. I start making a cake so there is something for them to eat later. I spotted this recipe long ago: beetroot and chocolate cake. By now I’ve got all the ingredients: I’ve got boiled beetroot and chocolate as well. I’ve got to make this! I peel, chop, measure, mix. Nojka asks if she can help. Sure. Let’s do it together. It’s so good to be together, us women.
Eventually the two men start playing chess. Why are they playing chess?! I miss Gábor and Zoli is in the way. But they have no intention to leave. I stand behind Gábor, cuddle him, hoping that he’d notice what’s happening with me (what is happening with me?) but nothing changes. I’m tired. Well of course, I haven’t slept a lot at night. I leave the cake to Nojka: take it out of the oven when ready. I let Gábor know as well that I’m retrieving to the bedroom – and so I do. I close the door behind me.
Oh, it is so good to be on my own. I can hand myself to the contractions, I don’t have to turn away, the others don’t bother me. Let’s play mamas and papas! This is not birth yet, this will path but let’s pretend that it really is! I love giving birth! A contraction comes. I close my eyes and gave myself to it completely – I’m flying – wow, this even hurts! It passes. I’m looking out the window, daydreaming. I consider going for a walk. Another one comes. I close my eyes, fly and it is quite painful. Something warm on my belly would be really nice. The radiator is warm. I stand close to it and press my belly to it. Doesn’t work: it’s terribly hard and flat. I try to put my belly above it. Although the warm would be nice from underneath still the whole thing is just not good: my belly is pressed against the horribly hard, flat and cold wall behind the radiator. This is good for nothing! I fly through a few contractions and then realize that I am really very tired. How convenient that I’m only pretending to give birth! Let’s leave the whole thing, I go to bed instead. And indeed, I sleep for a good while and wake up fresh.
I go out to check on the cake. Wow. It’s ready just now. I take it out of the oven. Nojka asks if she can help. Ah, don’t worry, I can handle it! It became really nice. We admire it together. And the oven glove is so warm! And soft!
I press it against the door of the oven to warm it up and place it on my belly. I close my eyes. It’s so nice! I relax now. I can tell that Nojka is paying attention to me, she is smiling at me. It doesn’t bother me, it’s good with her.
We call everyone together. We set the table, eat, and then clean the table. The children and the men are playing. Us, women go to hang the washing out. I have to stop between two socks. It’s so good to be just the two of us.
I close my eyes, fly, and then continue putting the clothes out. In between two contractions I’m saying that if this is so intensive now than I may not have to wait two more weeks. I’m expecting Nojka to say something certain, like of course not, it’s obvious that you’ll give birth in two days. But she doesn’t say anything just stays silent, and hums and does the clothes. Eventually we finish them. We sit down in the resting burrow to chat and cuddle the children. We talk but when a contraction comes I make Nojka stop talking because it bothers me. A close my eyes, fly, ache – then she can continue what she was saying. She’s talking about some kind of sock finding place at one of the squares – I couldn’t care less!
We realize that it is time to go for Nojka and her family. Let’s go together then, some exercise won’t hurt the team! Let’s walk them home. Getting the children dressed goes slowly, no one has the momentum for it. The boys could really give us a hand, can’t they see that we enjoy being together! Well, they don’t… It takes nearly an hour from the decision to have everyone out of the gates. It’s already dark. In the hall Gábor brings it up whether I really want to do this trip. What is he blabbering about?! I want to go! He mentions something about whether I will be able make it there and back? Doesn’t he understand that this will pass?! These are not real contractions!!! I tell him that I feel like going, it will feel good. This puts an end to the discussion, no doubt any more: we are going! Fine, he understands everything, he’s a great man. In the meantime he realizes that in just a few minutes time he can come home for the car to take me back and finally relaxes. Fine, if he needs this thought for feeling calm, than think about this! I know that I’m not giving birth, these are just Braxton Hicks.
We are standing outside in the lovely darkness that covers everything. I ask Nojka when she usually calls Ági. Her answer doesn’t help. It turns out she’s not very good in this either, she usually calls her too late. I think about this but then let it pass. These are just Braxton Hicks contractions, I easily have two weeks left, these will pass. Why would I call Ági? I’m not going fall for these contractions only because it’s a third child!
The children on their bikes, for the first time this year. The men follow them in the front so cars don’t cause any trouble in the dark. Ármin on Nojka’s back, they are putting on my slow pace. It is really good, we, women together in the dark! Contractions are coming. I am trying to use her arm to hold me several ways – then suddenly I find it how it’s best. I find the best way to lean on her so I feel her support every time when we stop for a contraction. But I feel embarrassed. I tell her I find this whole thing ridiculous. She says it’s not ridiculous, I am beautiful. I relax and feel really safe.
We are chatting between contractions. I admit to her that I worked a lot throughout this pregnancy, and besides the two children it took me a long time to feel about this pregnancy the way I wanted to. But I managed by the end. It’s her turn now to confess. She was the first one after the close family to know that I was expecting a baby. She heard it on my voice through the phone even though I didn’t say anything like that. We met an hour later and Bence accidentally told her, he was so happy with it! Nojka was very pleased with the news. And here comes the confession. That from this moment on for several months she felt somehow expectant. Then this feeling passed. And it passed exactly when it became complete for me. I’m crying I’m so moved and relieved. Then the baby surely got all she needed!
We are walking, walking, walking on the otherwise not long road, with these contractions and halts it takes enormously long. Every now and then Gábor asks how I am, can I handle the journey. I don’t understand what he’s on about! I tell him there is nothing, these are going to pass. Fine, he goes and joins Zoli and the children in the front. I don’t miss him, Nojka is enough for me. I carry the baby in my front, she carries Ármin on her back.
We arrive. I go in to have a wee and fill up my flask. Zoli asks his parents for the electric heater. Even though they are not using it for anything they are not giving it. Nojka gets upset, Zoli tries to calm her. I don’t care. We have two weeks left; we’ll get one from someone else. They tell me if I need it suddenly we should just let them know and they’ll bring it without the parents’ permission. Fine. We set to go back home.
I miss my support. I try to do the same with Gábor what I’ve done with Nojka. It’s simply not working! He’s too tall and he’s not willing to band so it’s the right height for me. And he keeps asking whether I can handle the journey. And the children are in the front on their bikes…! Last year they were good and could be let in the front on their own but they haven’t sat on the bicycles for months and don’t keep the rules they haven’t practiced for a long time. I keep on trying to get Gábor’s help but I soon admit that it is even worse than nothing. I let him go to see the children and I go on my own.
It’s not that bad! I waddle in between two contractions and stop when they come. I close my eyes, fly, enjoy it. It passes, I go forward. I advance somewhat.
They wait for me at the zebra crossing so we can cross together. It’s not that bad to embrace Gábor after all while it’s red. It’s green! Let’s go. Oups! A contraction! I can’t go. We stay. Oh dear. Will it ever turn green in between two contractions? Of course, this is not serious, these are not real ones. We cross at the next green and it’s only a few corners ‘til home. I instruct Gábor: leave me here, don’t worry. It is so good to be alone! A contraction comes, I halt, grab the fence and that’s how I fly with my eyes closed. Wow. I’ve passed by this fence at least a million times but I never held it. Hedge is growing behind it, old green fence. Well, let’s go forward.
We make it home. I’m going up the stairs, the telephone rings. Contraction. Then I’m not answering it. The contraction passes and the phone still rings. Of course I want to answer it! I reach it in time. It’s Vera. She’s asking of some kind of recipe, maybe yoghurt or cheese. I answer it nicely – we fit in between two contractions.
The children are hungry and it’s late. I’m not giving them dinner any more, I leave this to Gábor. Now there is an aftertaste in my belly even in between the contractions. Understandable, this has been going on since the morning, even since the middle of the night! I try to lie down and go to bed to see if the contractions stop like in the afternoon. Oh-my-god-this-unbearably-hurts-on-my-back!
“Stand up then!” – Gábor says from the table. But I can’t even move. Bence and Eszter are laughing, they find it funny even though I’m suffering greatly. Gábor tells them off. The contraction is over, Gábor reaches me and helps me up. Well, I won’t lie down for sure. These are real Braxton Hicks! I think I will at least let Ági know. I call her. I love her voice! She is asking questions and I give silly answers, I feel stupid. What do I know if they are deepening! And how often they come and how long they last! All I know is that these are only Braxton Hicks and they will pass. Then we should measure the time and call her again. We measure, call her and say silly things again. At least it’s over. I called her!
I wish to sit in warm water but the children haven’t had their bath yet. I tell Gábor to do it quickly. He does it, the bathroom is mine, they are reading bedtime stories in the bedroom. It’s a relief sitting in the bath. I look at my belly. It occurs to me that it’s over. It’s big, round, smooth and moving. It was nice, thank you! I say good bye, who knows maybe these are not Braxton Hicks after all.
Gábor enters. The children are sleeping. It’s just the two of us. Sounds nice! Only that it hurts so much! I try to change and sit differently in the tub. Two contractions are better. Then worse again. I tell Gábor that I really wish to hear Éva’s voice. Gábor hands me the phone. I can’t reach her, I only talk to her husband. I don’t want his voice. But in ten minutes Éva calls me back! Oh it’s so good to talk to her. I tell her that I’m only calling to ask whether I can count on her when I need her, when I give birth. Oh, it’s so good that I can! And we hang up. There is emptiness after her.
This hurts so much, God, what shall I do?! I get out of the bath. I walk up and down. I tell Gábor to prepare hot poultice of clary sage. He does but he sucks at it because when I’d need it there is none, when there is it’s not hot enough – it’s barely effective! I call Ági: come! She comes. And the table is untidy with all the remaining of dinner. I ask Gábor to clean it and tidy. And give me poultice! And massage my back! And why is the table still untidy???!!! “Because you are asking stupid things!” “Me? Stupid things? Me? When I’ve been having contractions all day since morning? What do you mean stupid things? If I ask tidy the table then tidy the table!” I cry crazily leaning on the windowsill. He comes, cuddles and loves me. So good! Only that is hurts again! And however I hand myself over to the pain it doesn’t pull, I don’t fly, I go crazy with the pain! I can hear of my hysterical voices and I feel that I am going crazy – oh my God, this is how it was at my first birth at the hospital when things were going wrong. I tell this to Gábor. He says maybe I am more ahead than I think. This is stupid! He always talks this kind of silliness! He is good for nothing! The light drives me crazy! I want darkness and peace! I want to go to the bedroom, I have to find myself before it’s too late! But the children are sleeping there! – I think. Who cares! I’ll go in! I tell Gábor that I want darkness and I leave. I can hear him packing. And I can see the light filtering through the gap on the door. It bothers me. Both the noise and the light. Doesn’t he understand that I want darkness??!!! I call out that I want darkness. He turns it off. He packs in the bathroom now. The light still filters in although to a smaller extent. I call out, even more annoyed. He says he didn’t think I’d see even this. This man doesn’t know what dark means???!!!
Finally it’s dark and quiet. I let myself go. I let my voice out. This feels good. The children don’t wake up? I pay attention at the first one but no reaction. Well if this doesn’t wake them then nothing! – I relax and don’t care about them any longer. I miss the warmth from my belly. I try the radiator trick but now it’s worse: the radiator is cold. That’s it for the warmth then. That leaves moving and the voices. He comes in. No craziness this time. It’s not easy because it hurts very-very much but I can hand myself over to the power and then I can fly and the whole thing is bearable. Every now and then I don’t manage and then craziness comes but then I manage again and can bear it.
A few contractions go like this – who knows how many – and then with the next one everything changes. A different voice comes out of my throat, it comes from deeper and passes through my pipe unimpeded, unformed. And then suddenly I feel the arrival of the burning pain I’ve known since the birth of Eszter, the great opening low down. Oh my God! This is happening! She’s going to be born now! These are not Braxton Hicks, I’m in labour!!! I don’t want to be alone!!! I rip the door open and shout panting: “Ági!… Where is she?” “Shall I call her and ask?” – Gábor asks. “Yes!… Where is she?” I run back because the next one is coming. “She is down at the gate.” – I hear. Oh! Thank God! I cover myself with a woollen blanket so I’m not totally naked and I go to meet her on the corridor. She’s really here! I relax. And I really wish to be close to her. I say hello. She stands and says hello back. Is she just going to stand there? Is she not coming? I feel that the contraction is coming but it can’t catch me here – I dash back to the room, throwing the blanket off of me. Ági arrives for the next one. Do I want poultice? I do. It would be so good to hold and enjoy it! At the next contraction I get a really hot one to exactly the right place – it’s terrible. I don’t want it! I push her hand away and as usual scream like an animal. At my previous birth the voice surprised me but now it’s familiar. I felt embarrassed then but now it’s OK. I’m giving birth. It is like this. Ági mixes some kind of oil rapidly and does something down there that’s oily. She tells me to let her know if something doesn’t feel good. I poo, she wipes it. That is not good at all. I tell her but also that she can do it if she must. I can’t stay pooey if the baby is coming I have to admit that. The next time she wipes she apologises immediately. I like that.
At one contraction I lift my right leg. Not on purpose, it’s instinctive. I’ve been leaning on the dressing table but suddenly my right leg starts elevating. Ági is squatting below-behind me. It is so good to rest my leg on her shoulder! Then I put it down and that’s it. I haven’t done this before or after but then I had to!
It hurts terribly! I shout everything like “why did I want a child” and that “God, God!” – I remember this clearly. And I push and push because it is clear that I have to push. I’m not sure that it’s ok to push for so long, continuously. I ask screaming “Can I push?” “Do what you feel you have to.” – or something like this was the answer. “Then I push!” We do this a few more times. It’s so good that she is here. I scream that it hurts terribly! She says “It’s nearly over!” I know that it is nearly over. But it incredibly hurts now!!! “Nearly has already passed!” – I say, because talking back helps. Then the water splashes – it broke now. “The water is nice and clear.” – I hear her calm voice.
Then after a contraction my hand is moving and I feel in between my legs. A head! Oh dear! It fits perfectly into my palm, it’s warm, soft and hard in the same time – this is my baby!!! An incredible power reaches me. And I push her out.
She is born.
Bence > > >
Eszter > > >
Eszter’s birth from another angle > > >
Véletlenül kiválasztott mesék.
This post is also available in: Hungarian