It was a usual crazy day in our house--lots of comings and goings from lots of people, and then we added in a birthday celebration for fun. The family party will be Sunday, when we meet at Ruby's on the Seal Beach Pier. But for tonight, we just had a quiet dinner at home with his favorite Chicken Biscuit Casserole (my own invention, and Adam's favorite), and Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cheesecake (recipe from Natalie Cool...a birthday tradition for years!!).
Seventeen years ago I lived in Omaha, Nebraska, and had a 2 1/2 year-old little girl at home. Within a week of my due date with Adam, my doctor feared another big baby, since Tessa weighed 10 pounds when she was born. He had me working hard to naturally bring the birth of my second child on. My mother-in-law came from California and worked right with me. Walked the neighborhood, walked the mall, strolled the zoo, ate lasagna...anything that might make a baby be born. No baby. Her time to be with us had been extended a few days, and still, with no baby, she had to fly back home to California without being able to see her newest grandson (until the next Christmas).
My doctor decided to induce labor. My mom and grandmother came the night before. As soon as we got back home from the airport, I took the sleeping pill my doctor insisted I take, and was out COLD until morning. My mom and grandma completely took over Tessa, and even weathered a severe thunderstorm while I enjoyed my first night of sleep in weeks, oblivious to anything but my drug-induced sleep.
We were at the hospital early the morning of August 3. Adam was born at 1:41pm. His was the only delivery where I didn't have drugs to ease the pain.
It wasn't because I didn't ask for them. I did. But the nurses, bless their hearts, believed I'd get a better experience out of natural childbirth. I THOUGHT I WAS GOING TO DIE. I swear, I have never been so out of my mind in my life. I remember pushing my body up, toward the ceiling, with my feet in the stir-ups. The poor nurses kept having to rope me back to the bed. I wanted out, and fast. Finally, the baby was born. A boy. Adam Lloyd. As the staff cleaned him and counted fingers and toes, I noticed how quiet and peaceful it was in the room, in comparison to all the screaming I had done. Oh yes, I screamed. Really screamed. My ears were ringing. At that quiet moment, for whatever reason, I said, "I screamed." The nurses just looked at me. My comment was abrupt and it broke the silence. It was an odd moment. Kind of awkward. They just looked at me, and then they went back to work on Adam.
The most notable memory of his birth, however, was in the middle of the night, when it was just Adam and me. I looked at him in his little bed, and a curious thought, even a feeling, came over me. I realized I didn't know him. Not the way I knew Tessa, who was back at home. I was stunned. How could I feel this way--this disconnected from my own child? With Tessa, I knew every expression, every voice inflection, every need before she even communicated it. It was like we had a psychic connection. I longed for her--it was the first time I had spent a night away from her. With my brand new Adam, he was a baby laying in my room with my name on his wrist. But I didn't know him. This stressed me. A lot.
His eyes were different than hers. His hairline was different from hers. His noises were so different from the noises I remembered her making. I never expected this feeling. With Tessa, I seemed to remember having this connection immediately. I almost felt panicky.
But then he cried. And I reached for him. And I held him. And I nursed him. And then, just like that, I knew him. It was that immediate. He was a different person from Tessa, yes. But I did know him. And I was smitten.
He has grown into quite the young man. I am deeply proud of him. His spirit. His nature. His humor. His vision for the future.
This year is the Year of the Bike in our family. Everyone needed a new bike, so we declared at the beginning of 2011 that this would be the birthday gift everyone could expect. Adam wanted a mountain bike, but when I asked the bike shop personnel for advice, they believed that his 6'1" frame was a little much for the type of bike he wanted. We had to regroup.
After some serious reconsideration, and tons of advice-seeking (thank you Chris, Olivia, and Christina!!) we came upon the perfect bike for Adam. A beach cruiser. It's badass. He loves it, and we love that he is so happy with it.
Oh...one more thing. Remember all that work to get him out before he got too big to deliver? The crazed mama pushing up in the stir-ups because of the drugless pain? Adam weighed in at a whopping 10 pounds, 1 ounce. He surpassed his sister's birth weight, even. Must have been the lasagna. Or the Whoppers I craved during my pregnancy. Whatever. I have bragging rights...I pushed out a 10 pound, 1 ounce child without drugs. And he holds the baby-weight record in our family, thank you very much. Although we do have another Tisor Baby due at the beginning of next year. Will he or she be a contender, Gregg and Jorden?!