August 17, 2010

Brownies = Labor

This past weekend I was making brownies to bring with me to see my brother and my sister-in-law and my sister-in-law's sister and my niece---and boy do I love being able to say that! It is so nice having them close enough that I can be all, "Oh, yeah, just driving over to see them this afternoon!"

Anyway, so I was making brownies, and EVERY TIME I make brownies I think about being in labor with my firstborn. The day before he was born, I woke up and my water broke. Paul went to work anyway, because it was 2 weeks and a day before the due date and everyone had been "FIRST BABIES ARE LATE!!" and so he had some work project he really felt like he needed to wrap up before taking 2 weeks off. (My feeling, by the way, is that he was also panicking.)

I was only having tiny twinges, not even anything I'd call a contraction, so I put a couple of dishtowels in my pants and puttered around, tidying up and putting the last few things in my hospital bag, and changing my towels repeatedly and doing laundry so I'd have more towels. It was still a few more hours before the OB's office would be open (I could have had her paged, but it didn't seem like there was any reason to), so I thought I'd put together some food for Paul to eat at the hospital. I made sandwiches and packed baby carrots and granola bars, and that's when I decided to make brownies.

The whole time I was making them, I was in this DAZE of "OMG BABY COMING! OMG BABY COMING!" And I was SO happy and relieved, because labor had started in the EXACT way I wanted it to: I'd been very nervous about false labor and false alarms and going "Should we call? I don't know. No, don't call. But maybe we should?," but when your water breaks you are IN LABOR and no one has to ask you questions about whether you know about Braxton-Hicks contractions. (Although, as it turns out they DO ask you if maybe you actually peed your pants, but then I could say "Not unless my bladder is large enough to soak all the towels we have in the house.")

Also, I was so glad to have some time to THINK and PUTTER: no rushing off, plenty of time to put out extra cat food for the cats, and buy that day's newspaper (we had a newspaper machine in our apartment parking lot---I didn't, like, go to the STORE with towels stuffed in my pants) (and also, it turned out to be useless since the baby wasn't born until the next day), to shower and wash my hair and shave my legs.

And I was almost GIDDY about being on the early end of normal instead of the late end. And that I had bought the car seat THE DAY BEFORE. And that now we were going to miss our last two childbirth classes (bad weather had caused several to be delayed) (one of the classes we missed was on c-sections, which I ended up having, so that was too bad but I don't think a class would have been much help anyway).

There wasn't anyone to call, because we'd decided not to let anyone know anything was happening until the baby had arrived. (We didn't want people visiting or fretting or, in the case of my mother-in-law, getting miffed because we weren't calling often enough with updates on how things were going.) So to me it felt like entering this sealed CHAMBER of labor: it has begun, and it won't end until a baby is born, and everyone we know thinks I'm going about my usual day but it is NOT USUAL AT ALL!

Since I was making brownies while in this happy daze, it's gotten completely linked: every time I make brownies I remember the happiest part of labor.

31 comments:

Rah said...

Okay now please tell us the rest of the story, about when Paul finally came home and when you eventually went to the hospital, and how it turned from water breaking into a C-section.

It is funny how we make associations that way! Thanks for sharing.

Anonymous said...

Wow - you were industrious. Great story!

With my second child, what I always remember is that the 6th Harry Potter book had just come out (Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince). I started labor in the morning, my husband went off to do a few hours of work, and I spent the time reading the book between contractions. It was a great distraction - I brought it with me to the birthing center, and continued to read between contractions until I couldn't anymore..., and then went back to it the next day with a baby nursing on my lap!

sara said...

See brownies are nothing but goodness and light. Just another reason why they are awesome!

Mimi said...

What a great memory.

Amanda said...

That's a sweet story!

I went into labor two weeks early via water breaking too. I also remember feeling satisfied that it went that way so I wasn't worried about the WHEN??????? I also had a c-section and missed the class on c-sections. WEIRD. (I did not make brownies but I did try to find our Scrabble board)

Christy said...

I'm glad you have happy associations with labor. Brownies do make everything better. I have no happy memories, because I was a week late and I had a PUPPP rash all over my body. All I could feel was RELIEF that soon I wouldn't itch!

Nicole said...

I love this - it's so happy! That's how I wanted my labour to be like as well but alas. It was not. At least you got to shave your legs! It's funny the things you think about. Will the doctor think it's weird I haven't had a bikini wax? I mean, I can't even see my bikini area. But maybe I should shave? This is what I was thinking, insanely enough.

Okay, perhaps I overshared a little. Anyway, I love this happy, happy post! And brownies make everything happier.

Jess said...

This story is so sweet! I am so excited for my turn for this.

I will say that your labor started the way I hope mine DOESN'T--with the water breaking but no contractions. I don't want my water to break before contractions start because that raises the chance of having to be induced and I don't want that. But! I do want the happy puttering around "about to go into labor" feeling you describe. SO FUN.

Omaha Mama said...

That is such a great story! Both of mine happened at night, so I just had a night full of all of those thoughts and no actual jobs to putter around and do. I'm so impressed by how much you did while also being in labor!

Theresa said...

I'm so jealous! I've been having contractions for days now and I wish my water would break already so I could bake brownies and go to the hospital. *sigh*

St said...

This makes me wish even more that I'd had natural labors! Now when I make brownies I will always picture you with towels stuffed in your pants. What fun! ;)

JEN said...

Love the dishtowels - it's totally something I WOULD DO! I use dishtowels for everything around my house, dust rags, makeshift bibs, napkins, etc.

I love you packed a lunch for your husband to eat the hospital when you should have only been worrying about yourself.

Sarah said...

Know what would be cool - A labour story website. Don't all mother's love the labour story? Poeple could post their own and read about other people's

Saly said...

I love this story! LOVE IT!! And you were so calm, considering that the baby was now coming, FOR SURE!!

With Bud, I went to the dr. when 2 days late to discuss possible induction, only to find that I was 5 centimeters, in early labor, and that the baby weighed at least 9lbs. I was told to go home and get my junk and tie up any loose ends and get the heck to the hospital. So we got my stuff, and I drove around with Hub while he got banking done, and some other general errands, and I just cried hysterically the whole time, because I knew that OMG WE WERE ACTUALLY HAVING A BABY!

So kudos to you for being all calm and stuff. And I'd also like the rest of the story. :)

Pigeon said...

I always think of labor when I eat meatloaf. The night before I had my second child, I ate meatloaf for dinner. And that? Was a very. Big. Mistake. It was a year before I could even look at meatloaf again. But now it is a fond memory.

Jen said...

This makes me smile. Because, you know, I love babies. And, um, brownies.

Anonymous said...

That is an awesome story!

Melissa H said...

I was about to do the dishtowel think in the same situation but had the brilliant idea to use a diaper! We had a stash of newborn diapers on hand already so I went around with a diaper in my pants. More leakproof thank towels.

Amy said...

Awe what a sweet story.

I had hoped my labor would start in the same way so that I definitely KNEW it was labor. Instead I had back labor that I thought was something I ate start 3 weeks before her due date. Then when I finally realized it was the real thing, a rush to the hospital (already in transition) to be checked out. 9 cm! Then to find that she was breech while pushing. Emergency c-section after only 9 hours of labor. It was quite a whirlwind, but there wasn't any time to be worried or stressed. :)

Please share the rest of your story!

Tess said...

I am STILL PISSED that I didn't remember to buy a newspaper until the day AFTER Ava was born. In fact, postpartum I actually THREW AWAY the one I did buy, because BAH! USELESS! (dumb)

Anyway, what a great memory to have! I'll always remember that I had the 2 cheeseburger meal from McDonalds a couple of hours after Ava was born. Best meal of my LIFE, I swear.

Linda said...

Nice. I liked this.

ru said...

I associate brownies with labor too! My sister's birthday was on the day that I went into labor and I was happily in the kitchen at 10 that night stirring away in between contractions. It makes me smile every time I make another batch. I think the birthday note I enclosed with the brownies said something about a "labor of love".

LifeIsABanquet said...

I love this! I have to ask: did you take any brownies to the hospital?

Beths said...

This is a great story. I cannot imagine not calling my doctor and everyone I know immediately, especially with the first baby! That's some serious willpower!

I associate a part of one highway with my first labor. My water broke, but unlike you, it wasn't clear that it was broken. It had been broken six days by the time I went to the doctor, thanks to a horrible terrible awful nurse who guilted me into NOT coming in when it happened. Anyway, my OB was in the process of moving buildings, and at the time, was in this temporary building on a weird part of the highway I never really traveled much. I still almost never drive by there, but when I do, it's instant. I can still point out the payphone (pre-mobile phones!), if it's still there, where we stopped to call our moms on our way from the doctor to the hospital. I don't think I've ever been that excited in my life.

d e v a n said...

Well! At least 2 good reasons to make brownies then! Woot!

Swistle said...

LifeIsABanquet- You know what's funny, is I can't remember! We probably did, but Paul probably ate them. I remember when we came home from the hospital there were brownies still in the freezer and it felt surreal: when I baked these the baby was not born! but now I am eating them and he IS born!

Lawyerish said...

What a sweet, cozy story! I love that you have such a specific memory and association of the last few hours you had as a family of two.

I really wanted my labor to start with my water breaking, too, because I KNEW that I was going to be the pregnant woman they turned away ten times at L&D with false labor. And sure enough, my water broke in the early morning so we had a baby that night! I did not, however, make any brownies. Tis a shame.

Jessa (bipolararmywife) said...

How nice to have such a sweet memory while making something sweet.

Ashley said...

What a great story! I feel the same way about Dijorno frozen pizza, if you can imagine. I went into labor right at lunchtime, threw a pizza in the oven because I knew I wouldn't be allowed to eat for a loooong time, and by the time the pizza was done baking, I was having contractions so bad it was all I could do to wrap it up, throw it in the fridge, and drive to the hospital begging for my epidural as I walked through the door :) It was really nice to come home from the hospital and throw a couple pieces into the microwave, also thinking, like you did, how strange it was that when I baked the pizza I was pregnant, and eating it, I was nursing my new baby.

Heather R said...

I am actually crying reading this. I recently realized I want another baby SO bad! I had been thinking about the possibility, but kept saying that it's not logistically and financially convenient, but I thought I was pregnant for the past few days and I was surprisingly happy and then realized today that I am not and I was surprisingly disappointed. Reading your post makes me remember all of the things I loved about being pregnant and going into labor too.

Siera said...

Dude, my labor started like that. except I used Always Maxium Absorbency pads. God I loved those things. I was in Wal-Mart with my water broken getting last minute things as I was 2 weeks early too. 42.5 hours later he came.