Firstly, and most importantly, I have a daughter! Project Tadpole came to a successful end on Wednesday morning, and so she shall no longer be referred to as Tadpole - she has a real name, and also a blog name that I shall introduce later.
It was all a bit of a nervy time. LC had been due on the 9th of this month, but that came and went without incident. And when she went to see the midwife last week, it didn't go well - an attempted sweep was just too uncomfortable to complete.
So I had my last day of work on Monday, and then we were booked in for an induction on Tuesday morning. The first phase of which is the installation of some sort of hormonal pill, after which we went home.
Tuesday was a fairly uncomfortable day - LC was complaining about back pain all day, which seemed to get worse as the day went on. Which was pretty horrible. About 11 we went to bed, though it was unlikely we'd get more sleep. And that plan was to go to the hospital again the next morning for the second phase of induction, and a long wait in the hospital.
In the event, it was unnecessary - LC's waters broke just before midnight, we called the Labour ward, and off we went!
Five minutes later, we were at the hospital. We did make a mistake in going to the wrong ward initially, but were soon at the Labour ward, gained admission, and waiting for a room to be ready for us.
The theme of the next several hours was of waiting. LC did a lot of work - I tried to do what I could, but the reality is that that was very little. The midwife was great, but really it was LC who was magnificent. She didn't even use much pain relief - she took a paracetamol and some codeine early on, and then some gas and air for an hour from 1.30 (but then stopped because she was feeling nauseous), but that was all.
Things actually proceeded really fast, and just after 4 it was time to push. Alas, that was the end of the 'easy' bit. An hour later, and it was time for a doctor to be consulted.
The upshot was that our baby needed a bit of help to reach the world. There was also some concern that she might be facing the wrong way, which wasn't good - but the doctor couldn't be sure, as the examination was just too painful to perform. So the recommendation was for LC to have an anaesthetic, and then the examination would be possible. From there, a forceps delivery might hopefully be possible... if not, a C-Section might be needed.
Well... this was the point where I got really worried, because while I'm aware that these things are fairly routine these days and the risks are pretty minor, the fact is that the risks are non-zero. And even if the odds are 10,000-to-1, someone still has to be that one. And when you're talking about the two most important people in my life, that's a hell of a thing.
But, of course, saying any of that really isn't helpful. The key thing was that LC had done as much as she could possibly have done, and it was time to let them help her out. And then pray.
In the event, it all went as easily as could be hoped - as soon as the anaesthetic was applied, LC found she was no longer in pain (as you'd expect, really), which was a huge relief, it turned out that baby was the right way around, and so although forceps were needed a C-Section was not. And both came through okay.
Project Tadpole came to a successful end at 6.20am on Wednesday 21st Feb 2018. She weighed in at 9 pounds 15 ounces (and a bit).
As she was born, I had the great pleasure of informing LC of the sex of our child. That was quite a thing, because although we genuinely didn't know until that moment, we'd more or less convinced ourselves that we were having a girl. Not that it matters, of course - her first clothes (from us) were still an R2-D2 onesie, and she's still been watching Transformers with her Daddy. She's my little girl, but she's still my little geek. Until she rebels and grows up secretly normal.
The rest of the story is pretty straightforward - LC and baby were kept in for the rest of the day for observation, and then we came home on Thursday. We've since been having very little sleep, we've been enjoying a multitude of visitors, and have been very much imposing on Gran's willingness to do the ironing. And the nappies have been horrific.
Now, I said she now has a real name, which I'm not going to reveal here. However, she also now has a blog name, which is rather important. As you know (maybe), LC is short for Lady Chocolat. I therefore toyed with calling her Little Chocolat, since she is very much her mother's daughter, albeit much smaller in stature (for now). However, that would need to be abbreviated to lc, and that would just be confusing. Therefore, I shall name her after another form of little chocolate: Funsize (FS for short). Until someone in the comments points out that that's a really bad idea...
And now... sleepy. So very, very tired.
Oh yes, one more thing: we need to say a huge thank you to the staff at the hospital. You were fantastic from start to finish.
#8: "The Sorcerer's Daughter", by Terry Brooks