cont’d from this post
After our 4th daughter was born in May of ’98, we toyed with the idea of spacing our children a bit more – so far they had been arriving in God’s timing (don’t they all? silly us!) but we considered “tampering” with the timing a bit. With Y2K looming large and many people in a tizzy over the imminent collapse of civilization, we felt even more tempted to wait a bit. Our standard 19 month gap would put the next baby’s arrival right around the new millenium.
For the first time ever, I slunk into the WalMart pharmacy with 4 small children in tow and left feeling vaguely guilty, carrying a product which indicated maybe I wasn’t crazy about the idea of having a 5th child to tote about. At least, that’s how I felt.
If you didn’t see this coming, smack yourself in the forehead now:
God laughed at us.
Our 5th child was conceived right on schedule, with a due date of January 1, 2000.
We blithely made plans to attend a friend’s New Year’s party, and arranged for a sitter 6 months ahead of time. After all, none of our children had been born on their duedates yet. I jokingly told our friends that unless I was in labor and pushing, we would be there.
I went into labor on a Thursday, of course. Thursdays were becoming a tradition for us. It was December 30. But labor was slow and long and easy. I was able to sleep that night, and by early Friday evening it still looked like the baby wasn’t going to show up soon. What else could we do? We went to the party.
We arrived at 6:30, and hung around until 10:30, but there wasn’t much to do once we got there. I didn’t exactly feel like dancing or drinking or gorging on shrimp cocktail. We finally decided to go home, watch a movie, and call the midwife.
Y2K came and passed, and we forgot to watch the clock. The lights never flickered, and the computer did not explode.
The midwife arrived a little after midnight and checked me. I was dilated to 5 or 6, but the baby’s head was tipped back in a brow-presentation: forehead first rather than the crown of the head. The midwife said that labor might pick up quickly if she could adjust the baby’s head slightly. After nearly 30 hours of labor, I was ready for a pick up.
Natalie was born at 12:59 AM, January 1, 2000. She had brown eyes at birth, weighed 8 lbs. 8 oz. and was 23 1/2″ long. I’m not sure which was more surprising: the birthday, or her length. We immediately called the local newspaper and our friend who worked for the local newspaper. About the birthday, I mean. Yes, we were first. As it turned out, the 2nd baby of the millenium didn’t arrive in our little county for another 4 days.
A couple of days later, we bought 12 copies of the newpaper featuring a full color front page article about our family and our little millenium baby.
‘Becca: Her birth story is here.
Sarah: Read about Sarah here.
Rachael was born while we lived in our travel trailer, parked in my parents’ driveway. We were building our house at the time, and hoped to have it semi-habitable before the big day arrived. But houses are big projects, and unlike houses pregnancies have a rather fixed end, give or take a couple of weeks.
Labor started 2 days after the due date. I think you can guess what day of the week labor started. I woke up around 2 AM reasonably sure that I was in labor. I timed several contractions, and woke hubby as they grew stronger. We called the midwife to let her know that we’d be needing her in a few hours.
We crept out of the trailer, leaving 6 sleeping children, and woke Dad and Mom – we had reservations on their bedroom & bathroom for the Big Day. They cheerfully vacated and brewed a pot of coffee.
Labor (again, just the “real” part) was 4 or 5 hours. I was flattered that Mom thought it seemed like a hard labor; I thought I was just spoiled after a couple of easy ones. But all became clear when Rachael emerged with one arm over her head! I told the midwife I wanted full credit when she measured that head: I wanted it measured with the arm, just the way I delivered it. Apparently she thought I was joking. She was wrong.
Our first little redhead weighed 8 lbs. 4 oz. and was born on the 14th anniversary of the day Hubby and I were engaged, just 2 short of our anniversary.
counting down: T minus 12 days.
I hope to live-blog most of the labor. We’ll see how that goes.