By Daddy Danny Thursday, March 22nd, 2012
The following is an account of our 30 hours of labor told from the end to the beginning.
Miranda and Declan
10:48 PM – Our beautiful baby boy, Declan Day Marshall Smith Cameron is born. We are all so proud of Miranda (my wife) for pushing him out in record time! The family claps as we find out he’s 10lbs 3oz and approximately 22.5 inches long. Everybody at the hospital has been wonderful. Thank God we came. WHAT A BIG, HEALTHY BABY! This is one of the best moments of my life.
10:18 PM – It’s clear that Miranda is ready to push. She keeps telling everyone that she’s getting the urge. The baby is very low. The nurses and our two midwives ask if Miranda needs to rest up. She says, NO…she’s ready now. I make my way over to hold Miranda’s head as her feet are placed in stirrups. I have no idea what’s going to happen, but I hope it doesn’t take too long. And I hope the baby doesn’t get stuck.
9:30 PM – The Doctor declares that Miranda is at 10CM and that the baby is ready. I start to cry to myself as the tension leaves my body. I can tell Miranda is excited as she looks to me. We hold hands and smile.
8:30 PM – I’m awakened by a hamburger in the face. Miranda’s dad and sister have returned from dinner. They have brought me food and figured I should wake up. I slowly stumble out of the built-in cot mattress the hospital has stuck in some crevice of the Labor and Delivery Room. I devour the food without thinking, happy to even be alive at this point. I have exhausted all my reserve energy, but no matter how hard I want to pass out or how tired my arms are, I realize that Miranda has gone through much worse than I have, so I feed off her energy. I’m no longer angry at the world or feel victimized. I don’t care that our plan of delivering this baby in a Birthing Center has gone completely sour. I don’t care if there is going to be this Mega-Bill from the hospital. I don’t care if I look like an absolute wreck. The only thing I do care about, is for THAT doctor to walk in and say Miranda is at 10cm and she doesn’t have to a have a Cesarean.
5:45 PM – My brain is fried. My nerves are shot. My skin burns. Crouched on the floor, I hold Miranda’s hands as she receives an epidural. None of us have any idea if this is going to work, but it is the only option left. In a matter of moments, Miranda comes back from the abyss of labor pain…back to her old, chatty, happy self. She suddenly gets a contraction. She smiles. “It doesn’t hurt anymore”, she says. The nurse tells us, “great, now you rest and when you wake up, you’ll be ready to push that baby out.” I don’t believe her, but Miracles happen everyday. Miranda can tell I’m still pissed, but she also knows I’m about to fall over from lack of sleep. The nurse instructs us to get some sleep. Miranda’s family leaves to eat dinner. I make my way over to cuddle up on a cold hospital mattress, not knowing if I’ll be waking up to good news or bad news. I put my head down on the cold sterile pillow and pass out.
4:45 PM – We are still at 6cm. The Doctor explains that Miranda needs an epidural, but it’s going to take an hour for the anesthesiologist. Great…an epidural. No insurance…what’s that going to cost me. Congratulations baby, you’ve just spent another 3,000 dollars of money we don’t have. Another contraction occurs. I rush over to push my fists in her lower back. None of it is helping. Another hour of terrible back labor and we are still at 6cm. I realize I haven’t said a word since we got to the hospital. I can’t take it, so I have her dad come over and push on her back. I go out of the room and walk around the hallways. I call my parents and my sister. Inform them that I feel like curling up and dying. I try to hide from everything. I hear Miranda screaming from the Labor and Delivery Room. Is this ever going to end?
4:30 PM – We finally make it the hospital and get Miranda into a wheelchair. As she moans in pain, we take her to the Labor and Delivery Room. She needs me to push on her back, but I just can’t do it anymore. I’ve been pushing on her lower back for 24 hours! Her dad steps in for me. The midwife gives me her cell to text her with any updates. The nurses make Miranda fill out paper work while she’s in the middle of terrible contractions. The doctor is on his way.
3:30 PM – Traffic is bumper to bumper on the Interstate. Not only are we trying to drive on the worst stretch of highway in Austin to get the hospital, but it’s rush hour traffic, combined with SXSW traffic, combined with Spring Break traffic. We are only 7 miles away, but it’s going take at least an hour. I have no idea why I decided to drive? I’m incredibly angry, I’m tired, and I have a wife that’s in horrible pain in the back seat of the van with never ending contractions. On top of that, I’ve been told that her cervix is swelling and my baby’s head is beginning to mold. So, instead of this wonderful, magical labor at a Birthing Center with midwives and a comfortable music room with pictures of Eric Clapton, we are headed to a cold, sterilized Hospital where Miranda is going to have a Cesarean and we will be trapped at a hospital for eternity. AND THE BEST PART IS…I have no insurance so this going to cost me…god knows what. All of MY plans have blown up in my face. A car cuts in front of me without signaling. This is one of the worst moments of my life.
3:00 PM – The midwife whispers silently to me, her face totally deadpanned, “We are still at 6cm. There’s nothing more we can do.” I leave Miranda in agony with her dad and tell the rest of her family to pack it up, we’re headed to the hospital. We pack our bags as quickly as possible. Miranda tries her best to walk to the van. She stumbles outside. I try to convince everyone traffic is going to be bad, and that we should take a different direction and get there faster, but I can’t find a way to explain it, nor does anybody understand what I’m saying. I realize I’m speaking in gibberish because I’m so tired. I finally comply with the route and just hope we can make it there quickly.
1:00 PM – The midwife checks Miranda again. We are still at 6cm. Miranda cries in the middle of a contraction. I push on her lower back as hard as I can. Miranda screams “PLEASE…GIVE ME SOMETHING FOR THE PAIN!!!” I’m frustrated because Miranda’s been lying in bed a lot and I know that if we can get Miranda moving and breathing correctly, we can get this baby out and not go to the hospital. I rush out to the lobby where parents have been stationed since 4am. They all jump up in shock. I exclaim I need one of them to help, because she’s not listening to me. Miranda’s Dad jumps in to help. Miranda is one of those people that will listen to her parents, so it works for a while. Miranda’s dad helps her walk around, change positions, breath correctly. Maybe we can get through this. I hope this works. No…I know this will work.
11:00 AM – We are still at 6cm. The midwife breaks her water by jamming what appears to be a knitting needle inside her. However, instead of a release of pressure, Miranda only feels worse…but it’s the only option at this point. It’s supposed to work. Miranda screams during her contractions. I push on her lower back. She tells me to go higher. I do. She tells me to go lower. I do. The contractions are coming faster now. There are no more breaks between contractions. I can’t find the right spot, because the right spot doesn’t exist! But we can still do this. I refuse to the go the hospital.
8:00 AM – Miranda and I lie on the bed, trying to get some rest. I keep my fists to her lower back, waiting for another contraction. Here comes another one! Our new midwife tries to help her breath, and tries to coach her through the pain. Miranda has a break. I run over and try to get the iPod player to work, but I can’t get the iPod to hook up. Miranda starts another contraction. I rush over and push on her lower back. Her hand reaches around her back and pulls my hair hard. “LOWER!” She exclaims. Another break. I really need to go the bathroom. I get Miranda out of the bed and in to the bathroom, where she sets on a bouncing ball. I spray water on her, while I do my business. Yes, it’s comes to that. The water doesn’t help so we go back the bed. The midwife checks her and tells us we are at 6cm. It’s taken four hours but we’ve managed to go from 5cm to 6cm. Hey, it’s slow progress, but progress none the less.
4:00 AM – We arrive back at the Birthing Center. Thank god we didn’t have to stay at the Hospital. At best, I might owe $1000, but I can handle that. Our midwife draws Miranda a hot bath. Miranda soaks in the tub for a long time. I push on her lower back. Then our midwife checks her. Congratulations. We are at 5cm and in Active Labor. Finally. I hope it won’t be much longer.
2:00 AM – The baby’s heartbeat is high for some odd reason. The midwife is concerned about it. We listen to his heart for about 20 minutes. Unfortunately at the Birthing Center, they have no way of knowing what it could be. She suggests we drive to the hospital. Miranda and I both try to come to terms with it, but it’s for the best. So, we travel up to the hospital and what do we discover…that the baby’s heart rate is back to normal. They monitor her for a while, but it just appears that the baby is fine. False alarm. Great news. We head back to the Birthing Center in high spirits.
1:30 AM – After a while of resting and trying to relax, Miranda feels something very wrong and her contractions are less than 3 minutes apart and very painful. We call our midwife and she tells us to come in. We know we won’t be coming back to the house without a baby. Third times the charm right?
9:30 PM – Miranda is going through contractions in the bedroom. She’s bouncing on her ball and drinking Sonic water. Thinks are progressing. She’s getting some back pain, but I push on her back and feels much better. We call the midwife and we go in the Birthing Center. She checks Miranda’s cervix. We are still at 3cm. She tells us to go home, relax and get some rest.
4:30 PM – Miranda believes it’s time to go the Birthing Center. As we head out the door, Miranda’s parents are excited, as both Miranda and myself. We hope to see our baby soon. Our midwife meets us at the Birthing Center, checks her cervix and tells her that she’s at 3cm. We are a tad disappointed, but head home. I grab a coffee, as we know the baby is on it’s way tonight. Can’t wait to meet him in a few hours. This is one of the best moments of my life.
Tags: dad, dads, father news, Fatherhood, kids, new dad, parenting, wife Posted in DadLabs, Fatherhood, Marriage, Money, Pregnancy |
By Daddy Danny Wednesday, December 14th, 2011
So…I just experienced what I’m going to call “FIRST FATHER FREAKOUT”. Do you remember the movie SPEED with Keanu Reeves? The part where Dennis Hopper, the bad guy, tells Keanu that his partner is dead…and then Keanu proceeds to go f***ing nuts on the bus? That’s me, except in my reality, it’s the part where the bad guy, MY NEW LIFE, calls me and tells me my partner, MY OLD LIFE, is dead…and then I proceed to flip in my home, while my pregnant wife, who is NOT Sandra Bullock at this point in her pregnancy, is driving our couch and not a bus.
The point is, I’m going to be a father and I feel like I haven’t accomplished anything as a film director or creative individual. I have made only one film that’s having a hard time getting noticed or distributed. I have made commercials that when submitted for awards have not won. My music videos only go so far. I’ve acted in a feature film that critics said where the worst acting they’ve ever seen. The last time I won a “real” award for filmmaking was 2003 and that was in West Virginia. Blah blah blah….does this happen to all first time fathers? Do we all freak the @#*%#@ out? How the hell do you raise a child, and still try to maintain the life you once had. Why does everyone tell you your old life is over?! I’m getting that damn call again from the bad guy from Speed! AAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHH!!!
BTW…Miranda, my pregnant wife, was watching Speed when this happened, so that’s why the Speed reference.
NOTE: However, during my freak out, while I was screaming and yelling, I did manage to clean the toilet and straighten up the kitchen. So am I quite productive when I’m angry.
Tags: babies, dads, father news, Fatherhood, infants, kids, News, parenting news, wife Posted in DadLabs, Fatherhood, Marriage, Money, Pregnancy |
By Dad News Tuesday, May 18th, 2010
Pesticides Tied To ADHD In Children In U.S. Study Chasing the mosquito truck on a bike sounded like a good idea at the time. (Reuters)
Parent Involvement In Grade School Boosts Child’s Social Skills “The research team found that parents who increased school visitations and encouraged educational progress at home saw their child’s social skills improve.” (HealthDay)
Islamic Nations Say Will Tackle Maternal Deaths-US “Islamic countries, home to about half the estimated 400,000 women worldwide who die in childbirth each year…” (Reuters)
Bad Dads We Love: Life Without Parole Edition “The Supreme Court 5-4 that minors could no longer receive life prison sentences without having actually killed someone.” (Dadwagon)
Discipline and the Defiant Child “The problem with spankings, time outs and other silver bullet solutions is that children soon build an immunity.” (ParentingGuideNews)
Tags: dad news, defiant child, discipline, father news, islamic, maternal deaths, parenting news, pesticides adhd, social skills Posted in News, School, discipline |
By Dad News Tuesday, April 27th, 2010
Watching R-Rated Movies May Lead to Early Alcohol Use What would be the right age to allow your child to watch R-rated movies? (HealthDay)
Few Extreme Preemies Survive, Despite More Effort “…there has been an increase in the number of extremely preterm babies receiving active, yet ultimately unsuccessful, treatment.” (Reuters)
Are You The Favored Parent? “Why can it be so important for one parent to feel favored?” (NYTimes)
Educational Program Urges Parents to Immunize Kids “…nearly one-quarter of children in the United States between the ages of 19 months and 35 months did not receive the recommended series of childhood vaccines in 2008.” (HealthDay)
Be The Ball, I Mean Beach, I Mean… “Here was something small but memorable that my boy could look back on as an adult when I’m a broken-down alcoholic wreck, and know that at least once his Dad did something for him.” (Dadwagon)
Tags: dad news, education, father news, immunization, movies, parenting news, preemies, quality time, r-rated Posted in Fatherhood, Health, News |
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