I decided I should test my emotional strength last night. My very dear friend had been keeping me updated all day long on the progress of her labor. She called at 4:00 to tell me she had a C-section and delivered a little adorable perfect baby girl at 1:05 p.m. I avoided her baby shower and avoided her as much as possible throughout her last trimester and I know she really wanted me to visit her in the hospital. So, when Jason got home we called the florist and ordered an arrangement of pink flowers delicately arranged in a crystal baby block. As I arrived at the florist, Frank (the owner) was there. He and his wife did all the millions of flowers for our 2 day wedding celebration. I hadn't seen him in a few months. He handed me the arrangement of flowers and with a smile on his face told me that he & his wife are expecting their first baby girl next week also. I faked my happiness. I should have known at that moment that God was trying to tell me this was too difficult for me. I should stay home, hidden under the covers, safely protected from the fertiles of the world. I didn't listen and we proceeded to the hospital.
When we turned the hallway corner to head toward the maternity floor I had a flood of memories that temporarily consumed my thoughts. The day I had my hysterectomy the regular woman's floor was full so they put me on the side of the hallway dedicated to labor & delivery. As I was walking the halls for 2 days after surgery I was walking alongside new mom and their bundles of joy. It was hell.
Jason & I kept walking and the nursery was located on our left, I stared at the floor as we passed it trying not to catch a single glimpse of all the babies. We arrived at my friend L's room without seeing a single baby. It was a miracle! I was so relieved. I gave her and her dh a hug and offered my congratulations. The baby wasn't in the room and I didn't want to ask about her, but I figured that's what this whole event is about, so I asked where she was. Apparently her body temperature was a little low and they put her in the nursery under a heat lamp, I imagine similar to the roast chickens that are sold at the grocery store. I said, "Oh, I'm glad they're able to get her warmed up". And then it happened...her dad said, "She's in the nursery. Don't you want to go see her?". Well, actually no I don't, but how do I tell a room full of strangers that I came here praying I wouldn't have to see the baby. So, we followed our same path back toward the nursery but this time I was forced to look in. There was a large section of glass and actual steps that you had to step up on in order to view the babies. It was an observatory of sorts, the most bizarre display of children I've ever encountered. I stepped up and glanced at all the babies bundled tightly in their bassinets. I felt like I was peering through the bakery cabinet at a Cake shop...which one do I want? I didn't have to analyze my selections long to know that I'd take any of them, all of them in fact. The crying ones, quiet ones, the black, the white, the ones with no hair or too much hair, the boys and the girls. I would take every one of them and bring them home with me. I am convinced that I would love each one of them with more passion than any of their fertile mother's could love them. We stared at her baby briefly, she was simply perfect, and then we returned to visit L.
Shortly after we returned to the room, the baby was brought in. Apparently her temperature had risen and the nurse explained she had little mittens on her hands and a hat on to keep her warm. L asked if I wanted to hold her, I insisted her family hold her first. Her sister picked her up immediately and after what seemed like only a few seconds, she passed her off to me. As I was reaching for her, someone said, "Be careful, they are contagious". Everyone laughed.
I held her for a few minutes and then passed her off, I then said that L should get some rest so we'll be on our way and we left. The moment we turned the corner from her room I began to uncontrollably cry. I thought it was a somewhat acceptable display of emotion because maybe everyone will think that someone died during my visit to the hospital, which isn't entirely a lie. I think part of me died in that room...or in front of the baby display...or at the florist. Will I ever stop dying?
On the sperm front we have an appointment on March 16th.
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