Before hitting the fire alarm, Matthew was stellar while at the hospital with me. In fact, I don’t think it would have been nearly as awesome without him.
I asked Matt to be my birth coach for a couple of reasons. The biggest reason was because I really wanted my first child to be the one to welcome my last child into the world. I knew this would be okay because Matt is really mature when it comes to these matters and he studied up on the process of labor and birth and really took his job seriously.
It paid off and he was amazing.
Matt was there from start to finish. Although he wasn’t around for the amnio, he was there for the epidural and that was the only part of the process that scared him a bit. The Anesthesiologist was interesting about it and I was really surprised. In the past, Dean has been asked to turn around and not watch the process because they worried that the look on his face when they did it would freak me the fuck out. By the third child, and still never having had an epidural that worked, Dean was impervious to the sight… especially after dealing with my friend Kayla dragging him away before he could rip the head off of the guy who stuck me eight times in the back for Olivia’s birth.
This time, we knew we had a good anesthesiologist from the get go and we were really comfortable with him, mainly because he had such a great personality. Which really has nothing to do with his capabilities of sticking a giant needle in someones back, but whatever.
I fully expected that Matt would be asked to leave the room. He and Dean had been told they weren’t allowed in the OR when I had my water drained and so I assumed that Matt wasn’t going to be allowed to witness the epi, but I was wrong. To be honest, I don’t think Matt would have seen the thing take place had the anesthesiologist not said, “Hey, Matt… come here and watch this!” One look at the needle and Matt was hiding in the corner. I spent the whole time telling him not to worry and that it didn’t hurt and I think that he calmed down so well because I was acting normal and speaking to him in a cheerful voice. He ended up asking to help with the procedure and thank the lord that he was told no.
Everything was something he wanted to help with. He wanted to place the catheter and the internal monitors and was just really all up in there. It was awesome. He was so very supportive and we joked and snuggled and when I was in pain, he would hold my hand and talk to me.
When it was time to push, he got right down there to get a good look and he was in awe of the whole thing. He was my biggest fan at that moment, just really caught up in seeing Emi come out. He asked some questions, but not many as he sort of knew what to expect from his studies and it was at this point that he was at his quietest and calmest.
Everyone included him as if he were an adult and I was so grateful for that. He was shown the placenta and umbilical cord and the docs were great about explaining it all to him and when he got to cut the cord, he was thrilled. At first, he handed the scissors to Dean and sort of held his hands over for the first little snip and then Dean told Matt, “You got this, Matt.” and removed his hands altogether leaving Matt to cut the rest of the way through.
Not one staff member objected to Matt being there or taking an active role. No one ever asked him to leave or step out in the hallway and they even allowed him to hold Emi’s hand while they worked on her. Dean stayed with me during the horrid fisting I took and Matt stayed with Emi and even followed her to the NICU where he was scrubbed in and admitted.
The best part for me was when I was lying on the bed with the doctor working on my placenta issues and Matt came and stood by me and told me how awesome I had done. He had become totally overwhelmed by the experience and tears rolled from his eyes as he choked on his words and tried to wipe them away before people could see them. I grabbed his hand and said, “It’s okay, Matt… don’t be scared.” and he said, “I’m not scared, Mom. I’m crying because I love my sister and I loved watching her come out.”
It was unbelievably moving and beautiful.
Now, he misses her like crazy and is really worried about her. He wants her home and I think the two of them will share a very strong bond since Matt was the first person Emi saw and watching her birth was so powerful for him.
It couldn’t have gone better and I am so thankful to Matt for making it all an unbelievable experience.
I am so very proud of him.