Saturday, May 10, 2008

The day I became a mother....

Well, it's Mother's Day Eve...Darling's in bed, Handsome's on stage doing a show and Moxie? Me, I'm finally sitting down.

We had a Victorian Tea Party today at the museum I work for. I remembered today how much I hate wearing hoop skirts and how wonderful motherhood is.

We had about 60 women there today, varying in age from about 4 yrs to 85. Some were mother/daughter/grandmothers, some were little old ladies from a senior center, all alone. Those women seemed so detached from everyone else and maybe a little sad. Where were their daughters/granddaughters? (I can't help but look at others and wonder their backstory.)

Amongst all the hustle and bustle of explaining Victorian Tea Etiquette, I missed my daughter fiercely. At 3.5 yrs she wasn't ready for the delicacies of fine china and sitting still.

Plus, Mama was a hostess and I couldn't have sat down with her anyway. Still, I missed my little gal pal and all the wonderful pretend tea parties we have with her stuffed animals...

Handsome and Darling showed up at the end to help deconstruct the tables/chairs etc. She ran straight up to me, jumped in my arms and gave me a huge hug.

"Mama! Mama! I missed you today!" ("I missed you today" being something I always say to her after work).

It got me thinking about the immense awe and honor I have being a mother. I thought about the day she was born, which is a great here you go:

Handsome and I had been together 7 years (1 year 1 month married) when I got pregnant. It was a crazy carnival ride of a pregnancy but in August of 2004, Darling was ready to enter the world.

Handsome was doing show after show after show during this time and even though I put my foot down and said no more shows after the one that ended 2 weeks before her due date, he was approached as a last minute fill in for Mercutio in "Romeo and Juliet".

Had it been another role I probably would have denied him. But how many chances do you get to play one of Shakespeare's coolest characters? I told him yes since the show would close 4 days before Darling was due.

It's the one show in 11.5 years I've never seen him in. But, shut up, I had a great excuse.

The night before Darling entered center stage, I spent with my BFF. Her husband, ironically was in another hospital recovering from a respritory ailment that almost cost him his life at 30. She didn't want to be alone and because Handsome had a show, I didn't want to be alone being that pregnant. (I was planning on seeing the show the day Darling was born. That obviously didn't happen.)

BFF had a dream about a month before Darling was born that my water broke on her floor at 6 pm. I laughed her off and said, "Whatever"...Seriously, what were the odds? It wasn't like I was there every day at 6 pm. Totally far fetched.

Try EXACTLY 6 am in the bathroom right off her kitchen. I got up early, went to the bathroom to pee, stood up when I thought I was done ...... GUSH!!!!

Being in denial, I called my doctor and she told me to go to the hospital. I woke up BFF, told her the sitch, and then called Handsome.

Here's the exact conversation:

Ring, ring...

Handsome: "Hello"
Moxie: "Would you like to go to the hospital today?"
Handsome who just got home from a cast party 3 hrs. before: "Huh?"
Moxie: "Would you like to go to the hospital today?"
Handsome: "Huh?"
Moxie (perfectly calm): "My water just broke!"
Handsome, jumping up on the bed: "WHAT?!?!?!?"
Moxie: "You probably should come get me."
Handsome: "Oh my God. What do we do?!"
Moxie: "Go get the bag I packed in Darling's room and come get me."

Handsome arrives at about 7. We start for the hospital. He's freaking out about what's happening and his show. I tell him: "Don't worry, I read the baby book. The average first time labor lasts like 14 hrs. You have plenty of time to take me to the hospital, go do your show and come back in time for the baby."

Handsome: "There's no F'in way I'm leaving you!"
Moxie: "Let's just see how it goes, ok?"

We get to the hospital and since I'm not having contractions, but it's obvious my water broke, they give me Pitocin.

The floodgates open. It's obvious that it's not going to be 14 hrs.

BFF (Darling's future Godmother) is on one side of me, Handsome's on the other. Both are holding my hands. Savior Brother in Law (Darling's future Godfather) is behind the curtain, but in the room (They only allowed 2 in at one time).

The contractions finally hit. The anethesiologist (an angel in a do-rag...or my hallucination) comes in and makes me feel no pain. I push, and push and push.

My father in law calls. Asks me what's going on.

"UMMMM...FIL...I can't talk right now, I'm having a baby. Get your wife here NOW!" (MIL was 3.5 hrs away.)

I'm watching the clock.

I'm a dedicated Theatre Wife.

I know if I can pop the kid out before 1:30, Handsome can make his 2 pm curtain.

I make him promise to go if I can do it.

Freaking out, he promises me anything.

The doctor and nurses, Handsome, BFF and Savior are all cheering for Darling:

"Come on, you can do it, get out there. Daddy's got a show...The show must go on!"

1:23 Darling is born.

She doesn't cry at first like in the movies. I freak. "Why isn't she crying? Is she ok? What's wrong?"

Finally I hear her for the first time....

I cry as she's laid in my arms.

Oh, God, she's SO beautiful. I wasn't expecting how BEAUTIFUL she could be....

Handsome has just enough time (6 minutes) to cry, gush, get the inked on footprints on his scrubs and fly out the door to his show because I forced him to do his duty.

I didn't even notice he was gone in that first 2 hours. It was such a blur.

I remember standing in the shower after it all was over (that's the first thing I wanted. Birthing is a nasty biz) thinking, "Ho-LEE SHIT?! That JUST happened! I'm a mother!"

I blinked and Handsome was back (thank God Mercutio dies in the first act!) Later he told me that at curtain call they made an announcement that Mercutio couldn't make curtain call since his wife just had their first child.

Darling got her first standing "O" at 2 hrs. old. Not a bad way to start a life...

I've loved every single day of the last 3 years, 98 months, 25 days with her...

Happy Mother's Day, everyone!