And then there was two...
After the shock of the unexpected delivery and the drugs from the epidural were wearing off, (An epidural administered by an anesthesiologist that thought it was her job to be funny and crack jokes, while sticking a 6 inch needle in my back, which SHOCKINGLY was administered incorrectly and did little to nothing to diminish any pain! Ya, I do not remember her fondly) I was in my private hospital room that my hubby so lovingly insisted I get so the first hours of baby's life could be calm and quiet and exactly what I had hoped them to be. (We found out a few weeks later, nope insurance not gonna cover that! :( So he was a little less jazzed about the private accommodations then, but c'est la vie!)
So there we were, Bear and I, the only problem...Bear had come during a snowstorm, I had barely made it to the hospital before it hit, and the day after his arrival, I was alone in my hospital room with no prospect of visitors until the world managed to dig itself out from the white deluge.
Alone in my room, that strongly resembled a cell, had shockingly dirty floors and a steady stream of nurses with really bad breath. (Ok, it was just one nurse, but the smell lingered.)
Alone with baby, so helpless and totally dependant on me. Yes, I had been there once before, but I don't remember it being so lonely. Hubby had gone home to be with Bubby, which hadn't been the plan, but in the thick of it felt like his place was with him, during this time of huge change.
What was going to happen?
How was Bubby going to react to this addition?
How was I going to manage being a mother of two?
Why are hospital beds so uncomfortable?
Why does this baby cry every time my head touches the pillow?
Can we really do this??
And most importantly, Why had one of the happiest moments of my life dissolved into anxious and insecure thoughts?
It was a long night as I lay there listening to the snow plows repeatedly going up and down Main street, so often I wondered if they were plowing any other roads. I was so eager for the boys to meet and have my whole family together, and it seemed like morning would never come and Bubby and Daddy would never make it.
I was bored and I wanted a distraction from my thoughts. I thought about watching Netflix on my phone...but I wasn't sure if brooklyn nine nine would be appropriate viewing for a one day old, plus I would have to leave the room to go get the wifi password, and I got the distinct impression that was tabu...also, so unprepared was I for this birth, (only the day before I was thinking about maybe packing my hospital bag), I had no jammies, no change of clothes and while I was looking pretty glorious in my hospital gown and diaper, I decided to keep that look to myself.
Bear and I took the opportunity to get to know each other instead. I told him about Daddy and Bubby and how he would get to meet him soon. I shared with him how excited Bubby was that he finally came out of Mommy's tummy and that he was going to be a big brother.
And Bear told me everything about himself...mainly that he was hungry and very cute.
Morning turned to afternoon, and Daddy and Bubby still had not arrived...
Another nurse popped her head in the door and I knew it was time for another test.
Bear was only technically delivered a few days before term, (even though he was three weeks early) but still, this by definition made him premature. Never has a tiny heel been subjected to so many needles. Tests were done to ensure his blood sugar raised after a feed, to rule out jaundice, enzyme deficiency, hypothyroidism and about a dozen other conditions that no one has ever heard of.
Bear was a great student, he passed every test... except one, jaundice.
My darned yellow skin tone was tripping the doctors up again, and while his levels were "acceptable" his colouring was "concerning" and yet more tests were needed.
I tried to tell them it was the same with Bubby. "I birth little, yellow babies." I told them. But his status as premature made the nurses and doctors extra cautious, which in hind sight, I guess I should be grateful they cared enough to make sure Bear was ok, before they sent us on our way. But in the moment I was not so appreciative.
Suddenly I heard a familiar sound coming from the hallway. Those of you who know Daddy and Bubby know you hear them before you see them. Finally! They had arrived and the moment I had been anxiously awaiting was here. My boys were to meet and my family of four would be complete. (Ya, that's right I'm stopping after two, yes I am aware they are both boys, no, I am not trying for a girl. I do...yup... I do know how cute their clothes are...still no.)
Bubby walked in with a large, stuffed giraffe in his arms and a hesitant smile on his face. The giraffe had a severe crook in his neck, and his head flopped comically to the side. The moment I saw that giraffe all my fears about the meeting were gone. This sweet little boy had, with one gesture, erased all the hours of worrying and self doubt I had been embroiled in only moments before.
You see, that giraffe belonged to Bubby. It was a gift from his Grandma and was one of his favourite possessions. He carried it around by the neck, hence the crook.
And he had brought it to give to Bear.
It was a gift for his brother that he had insisted on bringing. When Daddy, knowing the meaning behind this particular zoo animal, asked "Are you sure? Are you sure you don't want to give him a different stuffed animal?" Bubby looked at him puzzled, as if not understanding the question. Of course I do, Daddy.
He wanted to give Bear the best that he had.
Ladies and gentlemen...that is true love.
Giving the best, even if it means we have to sacrifice. Even if it means giving up our favourite thing.
Bubby taught me a huge lesson that day.
It's a day that I will never forget for that and many other reasons. And a memory that brings a smile to my lips every time...
The day Bubby met Bear.