The funny thing about Toby’s story is I laid down for 17 weeks. Why should that take two blogs? Because it was SEVENTEEN weeks, y’all. You try doing something for 4 months and tell me if it can fit in a sentence.
Anyways, when I left you I was 20-something weeks pregnant, lying down with Richy playing the piano.
Then, we had a hurricane. Rita, to be specific. It was forecasted to be the end of days, wiping Houston from the map and causing babies to be born in mid-air with Geraldo narrating. I was really excited about that, since I was pregnant. So began a semi-panic where we tried to decide if we should stay in place or drive somewhere else, and just brave the contractions that I had whenever I had to ride in a car. Ultimately we decided to travel 30 minutes to my sister’s house, and then the hurricane ended up being no threat to Houstonians anyway. That’s how it goes.
The next few weeks went by uneventfully, and I passed up 24 weeks for the first time ever. I remember thinking, can I relax now? I thought that point would change something, and I’d relax and feel like I could buy diapers or something. It didn’t, though. I would lay there and think, there is a baby in me. A real baby that will be born and wear baby clothes and I can keep him, but there was no connection between my mind and my heart.
At 31 weeks, I went to a routine appointment and found out I was dilated to 3. I was hospitalized right away. At first, I was so stoked to even be that far along, but the reports were so scary of what a 31 weeker would face. They put me on a magnesium drip, which is a horrible drug. Magnesium is the “big gun” of labor-stoppers. It makes you really hot, all the time, and your mouth gets super dry but I couldn’t drink much because a full bladder would really cause contractions. Mag works. Unfortunately, it only works for 72 consecutive hours and then you have to take a break from it.
I begged and pleaded to attend my own baby shower and got permission, and a terbutaline pump which was a needle taped into my leg, with a supply of terbutaline to be injected at will. Fun times. My baby shower was AWESOME, although I was so drugged I can’t remember much. After that it was back to the hospital, then back home, then back to the hospital because of an insurance snafu. Dr. Reed was breathing fire on all insurance and hospital staff, but I was actually relieved to be back in custody, on a monitor. I stayed there for another week or so and then got to go home on the terb pump, God bless my heart.
The next few weeks were a delicate balance of not moving, at all, waiting and praying and hoping. I wrote this in that gap.
I am sleepwalking
I'm hoping that maybe
if I tiptoe softly enough
then you will come
And not just be another
sweet dream faded too soon
Maybe if I don't wake up
You will come
and be the substance
of this hope
Maybe if I don't want you too much... maybe if I close my eyes... maybe
if I sleep
Then you can come and fill my arms
and I can be at peace
At 34 weeks, we went from strict bedrest to “taking it easy”. Toby was born at 34 weeks and 2 days. He was 4 pounds and 13 ounces. When Dr. Reed handed him to me, my heart breathed a sigh of relief. He went straight into the NICU and stayed there for 2 weeks. When we finally got to bring him home, it was party time. He has celebrated every day of his life since then. J