once oliver had slid out and begun the wailing that would continue to punctuate our lives with remarkable consistency, dr culpepper clamped off the cord and handed brian the scissors. she explained it wouldn't be simple, single *snip*. it would be more like trying to cut through meat and would take 2 or 3 really hardy attempts to get through it. brian later told me how excited he was that once he had sawed through, blood and goo splattered all over the floor and his arm. i must have been holding the baby at this point, because i missed all of the gore. i didn't even see the cord.
the baby nurse took oliver away to the other side of the room to clean him up while grandaddy's sophtware slump continued to play persistently in the background as if everything hadn't just changed forever. i sent brian over to film the baby's clean up and attempt to blind him with his camera's flash while i tried to stop looking over at dr culpepper every time her hand was on the upbeat with her cooter-stitchery. somehow, i completely missed out on the afterbirth. though i'm told the placenta is rather reminiscent of a two pound liver, i didn't notice it sliding out at some point. i was rather disappointed that i was unable to view that particular piece of my body's handiwork.
it turns out oliver was the cleanest baby on record to come out of a womb. he totally wasn't covered in any vernix nor was he even purple or freaky looking. that made me happy and not grossed out. i suppose incubating for a little longer gave him time to primp for his grand debut.
i'm not sure when it happened, but i nursed momentarily in there somewhere. it's amazing how foggy it is.
apparently, oliver was handed back to me and, eventually, everyone and their dog was brought back into the room so that i could give up oliver to have him frantically pass hands. cameras flashed like crazy and i suppose the nurse made us hand him over again to go to the nursery to be poked and prodded and bathed properly. i was told i would see him again in two hours (that would be somewhere in the neighborhood of 5:30 or 6:00).
everyone was booted out and proceeded with their media equipment to photograph what i later learned was my poor, screaming baby who was receiving no love. brian joined them once he had finished scheduling the courier for the cord blood. i was cleaned up and the bed was reassembled by nurse maryann. the amount of blood loss on the towels she kept changing out was astounding. how was i not passing out?
the epidural clean up crew arrived and he proceeded to pull all that tape off my back. i informed him that was far more painful than when the epidural went in. a day or two later, i realized all that tape left a rather weirdly angular rash on my back which freaked me out until the nurse revealed its source.
then i was the shining star of my own parade as i was wheeled from labor and delivery to my room while still in bed! ah... the luxury. halfway to the elevators, we met dr terry (pediatrician) for the first time.
once i was rolled into my new bed, the crowd showed back up again. after my anti-poo-on-the-table diet the day before (it was a success, btw) and my ice chip diet that day, i was fucking starving and not shy about giving my order for egg rolls (fried, not steamed!) and pad thai from mint to brian and sending him on his way. and i was still not shy when my order returned and i shamelessly threw myself headlong into it. darren and hank showed up in there somewhere and eventually, everyone filed out. brian had also left to go by the house to feed cats, etc. i realized it had been hours since my bloody rag had been changed and, more disturbingly, there was still no sign of my baby. i couldn't easily reach a phone to call the nursery and i was starting to get a bit upset. it was close to five hours before they finally brought him back. shame!
the nurse walked us through the trickery that is latch on and with the help of all three of us and a stack of pillows, we got him on there. though we thought we would keep him with us overnight, the nurse managed to talk us out of it. but there was no sleep after all. between the baby showing up every two hours and the insane night nurse showing up every hour, we might as well have just stayed up and had a slumber party.
next: the insane night nurse and my first post-partum pee. it was treacherous, sexy, and gory!