My goodness I don’t know how to begin.
I am speechless
Lying on my chest right now is my baby daughter.
4 days old.
In little clothes that looked impossibly small when she was still in my tummy but are now swimming around her.
I could start at the beginning I guess. Not the BEGINNING beginning, we all know how babies are made…
It all started at the zoo. Actually I’m not sure that’s entirely true but it seems like a good place to start. My 14 year old cousin is visiting from school –on her half term – and we decided to go to the zoo. I like the Joburg zoo. A few things make me sad – the lonely gorilla (his famous companion Max died a few years ago after making history by being shot by a robber who was chased into the gorilla enclosure) and the pacing honeybadger, but there are lots of other animals there who seem fairly content. Who knows. Anyway, we were at the zoo and did a LOT of walking. We saw lions, polar bears, lemurs, seals and snakes. Crocodiles, red pandas, servals and chimps. It’s a big zoo, there’s a lot to see. So off we went, the four of us (one of us in utero) marvelling at the tigers, chuckling at the baby chimp, laughing at the sign on one of the fences that says “Beware, these birds stab through the fence” No I didn’t go into labour at the zoo, (nor did I get stabbed by a bird). But the next night I had a bloody show. The bloke and I are in a restaurant, having the first of what we think will be ten days of hanging out just the two of us, romantic dinners when we feel like it etc. So I go to the loo and come back wide eyed saying, “I just lost my mucous plug” (gross I know!) “of fuck’ Suddenly I am absolutely terrified! Its fine of course, I’m hardly going to go into labour then and there like in the movies, but we get the checque swiftly anyway, I don’t feel like being crammed in with all these people anymore, all smoking and talking loudly. The fake cheery waiter “what no deserts?” The bloke. Firm. “No. Just. The bill” I phone the midwife. She says not to worry it doesn’t mean its coming NOW but go home, get some sleep, within three days it should happen.
That night I have a few cramps, nothing major. Slept fitfully but enough. The next day we went about our business as usual. 7 in the evening I start getting contractions. Just like period pains, not impossibly sore but enough to keep me awake most of the night. We text the midwife and tell her but say we’ll stay at home and keep her posted. 3 in the morning we decide to d to the birthing centre. The midwife meets us there confirms that yes I’m in labour, but haven’t started dilating yet. Go home, come back later. We go home. Contract all through the morning, at midday we go back to the birthing centre. I’m only 1cm dilated. Bollocks! I shan’t go into details save to say that yes it was bloody sore. It was …well…laborious. But, 32 hours of labour later gave birth to the sweetest gorgeousest girl in the world. 3 in the morning on 4th July. I know most newborns are supposed to look like the last tomato in the fridge and parents will never recognise this about their own child but she really is gorgeous and not the last tomato AT ALL!
So there you have it. We have chosen a good name, I think, and none from the last post!
I would hate to be a new mother bore but I’m sure I will be. And I don’t care.
That’s it for now. More cooing and tweeting soon.