She’s here!! Little Theia was born last week, almost exactly on time! Even better, she was born under a blue moon, and on our wedding anniversary. Whereas I can think of several more comfortable ways to spend our anniversary, she’s the best anniversary present ever – or at least, since Miranda showed up pretty close to our when-we-met-anniversary 5 years ago. Theia is HUGE and beautiful and brilliant and we’re all a little bit in love.
Everyone LIED though. The second one is in no way easier nor quicker. In fact, Theia took 28 hours of painful labour to arrive, exactly the same as her sister. I say “painful labour” – I know there is a difference between active labour and the first contractions, but I don’t subscribe to the theory that the first bit doesn’t count – it’s still just as much work and just as painful! Without getting too graphic… well… not really… I started getting contractions and my “hind” waters broke around lunch time exactly on my due date. I called the midwife, and went in to hospital when I thought the contractions were close to 5 mins apart. It wasn’t comfy but it wasn’t agonising at that point, but losing fluid meant that things were actually officially happening. However, the hospital had different ideas. The Labour ward was packed – they only have 8 rooms, and had an induction list with 10 people scheduled, let alone “walk-ins” like me. They examined me, but said they would only admit me when I was 4cm dilated. Despite the contractions I was nowhere near. So off we went home again. Miranda was really disappointed, she’d been so excited recently and even has a little countdown clock that had reached zero and now just says “BABY” expectantly.
By midnight I was in a ridiculous amount of pain and having very regular contractions, so we tried again, going in through Accident and Emergency. Again, they checked and again, I wasn’t sufficiently dilated. Argh!! I was so frustrated and so tried I cried in the car going home. However, the nurse did give me a blissful shot of morphine, so at least everything went foggy for a while and I got some sleep.
I survived around til 11am the next morning thanks to a few different forms of opiates, but by then I couldn’t stand it. My friend had brought round a “birthing ball” and it was actually quite handy – made you squat in the right position, but supported you underneath during the contractions. AND it was purple. I persuaded Carl to take it with us to the hospital. This time I FINALLY got admitted, but I’d been having contractions for nearly 21 hours by that point.
The Lovely Midwife met us there, and mercifully got me an epidural. I dozed through dilating from 4cm to 9cm, with Carl calmly eating sausage rolls and reading The Martian in the delivery room, and therefore fully deserving the screaming and swearing I hurled at him later. I wasn’t allowed to eat in the hospital except “clear” things – water and fruit juice was fine, but nothing solid except jelly/jello! Very odd, but I had three tubs full. When it was time to do the pushing, my beloved epidural had to go as I needed to be conscious and active; they already knew she was going to be big! I am not going to pretend that was a miraculous, beautiful and magical event – there was a lot of screaming and a lot of blood and it was utterly agonising, and it took nearly two hours. This doesn’t happen on Coronation Street.
Theia came out at 9lb 2oz, or to sensible people, just over 4kg. Her head was 37cm circumference – go measure and WEEP. That is one BIG baby, given she wasn’t remotely late. In comparison, my friend ended up having her daughter 2 weeks early, three days after Theia was born, and there was a full 3lb difference between them. I had stitches, again, but my dramas weren’t limited to her size – I haemorrhaged while delivering the afterbirth (although Lovely Midwife did describe the placenta as “very fryable”!). Ended up losing over a litre of blood, proper horror-movie style projectile gore and everything! Gruesome. They tried to move us to the Mother and Baby room, but I passed out as soon as I tried to sit up. Cue worried looking people rushing in,Carl being handed Theia rather quickly, a drip, iron tablets and scary talk about blood transfusions. I don’t know how long I had to rest up at that point, but eventually they let my parents and Miranda come visit (which I think !helped Carl a lot – he got to hear a lot more of the scary stuff than I did) and that made me feel a lot better!
They kept me in over night and all the next day, just in case. I didn’t really get that much rest because Theia learned what boobs are for within 10 minutes of being born, and she gets HANGRY. Not just upset, but red faced and RAGING until she’s fed. It’s so cute! After that, I managed to convince them to discharge me on grounds that I was “asymptomatic” – blood count was very low but I hadn’t passed out again. We were finally home with The New Moomin!
Theia was absolutely fine – got lots of hair and the longest toes imaginable. Miranda is over the moon about being a Big Sister finally! She suddenly seems so big and so grown up in comparison, but she’s very proud and wanted to show off her new baby sister to everyone at daycare. In fact, we aren’t allowed to call her Miranda any more, she just wants to be referred to as Big Sister. Granny and Grandad are equally besotted, and its been great having them here to help. They’ve been keeping Miri busy and entertained while I “recover” – I’ve been confined to bed for a week to regain strength and haemoglobin and allow stitches to heal (I didn’t actually survive the whole week in bed due to impatience and boredom, but I will admit I overdid it a few times when I disobeyed!). It’s been hard on Miri because its a big adjustment anyway in terms of not being the Only Child anymore, but she also can’t really understand why Mummy can’t play or bath her or rush about with her at the moment. Hooray for expeditions with Granny!
Anyway, here she is!
But what of the explosions, I hear ye cry? In Greek mythology, Theia was goddess of blue skies (appropriate for Saskatchewan, I thought), and one of the Titanesses, and mother of the moon and the dawn. Though we couldn’t really plan it, our Theia was born under a blue moon! Carl did influence the name decision as well: Theia was also the name given to the theoretical planet-sized asteroid that collided with the earth and formed the moon over 4bn years ago. Again, we thought this was quite appropriate given the explosive nature of her birth and her large size. The image at the top of the post is supposed to be the Theia explosion. We didn’t actually have a boy’s name picked, so we were lucky that we got the Theia we’d planned for!
We love our little explosive bundle.