Arrival of Bump


Wow. The last week has lasted a hundred years.

Despite my fears that Bump was getting prepared to settle in utero for the upcoming winter (I’d been experiencing no pre-labour signs as his due date approached), so would be forcibly evicted by induction, he arrived on his own terms — the day before his due date. At 4:44am on the 23rd of April.

Skipping the description of the event itself, I’ll just say that he left me with a third degree tear, and haemorrhoids that can be seen from space. This meant I was to call hospital ‘home’ for a little while, as I began recovery with what seemed more drugs than food.

I was thankful for the ready availability of midwives at all hours of the night during my hospital stay with Bump (renamed Timothy Levi), but the daylight hours were boring, so I was relieved when, on Day Four, the hospital staff let me go. Right up until the last bag was packed, I was excitedly imagining being home…with Internet access.

Then, a bundle of baby in my arms, I stepped out of my hospital room for the first time.

The world morphed.

Suddenly the hospital wasn’t a tedious imprisoning overlord. It was a place of security. And now I was leaving it! What was I thinking? As my husband drove us home, my anxious bewilderment grew stronger. Tears threatening to spill, it was all I could do to refrain from begging him to take me back.

The presence of wi-fi Internet, and my own bed, did make life more enjoyable for a while. That is, for the rest of the day. Then I faced my first night as a mum, with no helpful midwives walking the hall on the other side of my door.

I’d been told to expect crippling fatigue, and having to get up numerous times during the night to feed the baby.

Nothing had prepared me for the reality. And to be fair, I suppose nothing could. It’s a learn-by-doing thing.

All Timmy does is cry, poo, cry, eat, cry, scream, cry, and poo. (Perhaps ‘sleep’ should be somewhere in there, but it’s too small a percentage to be significant.) It wasn’t long before my captivation with his cuteness was superseded by my desire to push him through a post box and wish him luck.

Initially, tending to his cries seemed much like diagnosing a computer problem. They were straightforward cases of cause and effect. Nappy dirty? Change it. Crying over. Belly empty? Feed it. Crying over.

But now it seems he cries for fun, too. It’s not unusual for me to be sitting next to his cradle with the inconsolable bundle in my arms, cabbage leaves in my bra, tears dripping off my chin, weights hanging off my eyelids, ice crystals forming on my skin (a winter baby was bad foresight), and feeling like the universe must be laughing at me for it.

Today is Day Nine of parenthood. I’m told this stage is the hardest. (But then, everyone comforts themselves with that, don’t they? The Terrible Twos is also ‘the hardest’, then so are the teenage years…) Apparently, if I can just last a few weeks without putting him through the mail system, things will be easier.

The price of postage went up recently, anyway.


1 Comment

  • Rachel Black
    02 May 2012

    My heart aches for you Beautiful. I wish I could do something. I know. I have been there too (in fact I recall when you were the cause of my angst). I wish babies were born with language. There are people who will help and eventually you will get to know each other and be able to read his needs.
    Meanwhile, do not expect too much of yourself. Nobody is perfect at anything they’ve just started, and parenting is a huge job. I’m praying for wisdom for each moment at a time – and some rest.
    Love you heaps

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