Friday, March 27, 2009

True friends help you give birth - Part III

For the rest of my pregnancy I didn't see much of Jen. We got together once to discuss my birth plan but that was about it. (This was the first time I met Jen's daughter who has since charmed me to such a degree that I have become convinced that that she and Joseph will need to get married some day. Or she can marry Elle. Whatever, I'm open minded. I just want her for my daughter-in-law.)

They day before Little A was born I was at my regular 38 week check-up with my ob. My doctor made my year when he said he would induce me the next day. I was so excited! The next day was Jen's day off at the clinic. She would be able to be there for the birth. Our we'll-make-it-work-if-we-can plan had worked. As I was leaving the exam room I ran into Jen's nurse in the hallway. I snagged her and told her the news and we squealed and jumped up and down. She went and grabbed Jen and then the three of us squealed and jumped up and down.

Jesse and I headed to the hospital early the next morning. Jen arrived shortly after I was hooked up to the pitocin. The three of us played cards for a while until the contractions made it too hard for me to pay attention. (My birth story is here if anyone is interested. Don't worry, I'm not going to bore you with every detail of it all over again.)

Once the contractions really got painful Jen became my rock. Oh, don't get me wrong. It was wonderful having Jesse there too but it was different with Jen. Maybe because she had been a doula before, maybe because she's a woman who has given birth. All I know is that she always seemed to know exactly what I needed. My back rubbed, my hand held, something comforting and reassuring said. She didn't leave my side for the entire 10 hours or so that I was in labor. When I was pushing a started to panic a little bit she talked me through it. I really credit Jen with letting me have the kind of birth experience that I really wanted.

Immediately after Little A was born I laid back in the hospital bed. I was overwhelmed by emotions. I felt so happy and satisfied and proud and relieved and awed. I looked up at Jen (who was still standing right by me holding my and) and I felt a sudden rush of sadness. I thought "Here's this amazing person that's come into my life and given me an incredible amount of love and support and this short, intense period and now I'm not going to be able to see her anymore. Now that her job is done, our relationship is done too."

Almost as soon as that thought crossed my mind I felt Jen give my hand a squeeze. She leaned over, looked me right in the eye and said "This is not over. You and I are not over." Through gulped back sobs I agreed. Yes, we would be friends beyond that day.

And that's exactly what we've done. We've only gotten closer since Little A was born. We talk all the time, we text constantly. We watch each others kids and get our families together for game nights. She has me over to her house for baked goods after old woman scar me and I buy her fake spider webs at the craft store. We have laughed together and cried together and gotten drunk together. She has seen me at my best and at my worst. She puts up with my mood swings and neediness and neurosis and I put up with her ........ I don't' know. I don't have to put up with much. I guess I tolerate her love for brewing beer. There's not much we don't know about each other but we each accept the other for what we are without judgement or condition. Hell, she's seen me naked and even that didn't send her screaming for the hills.

I know I sometimes complain about not having enough friends but I need to try to remind myself of all that I've actually got. I several family members that I am very close to, some of whom even feel like sisters to me. My brother, in spite of being surly and curmudgeonly, is always there for me. I have a few good blog-friends who have enriched my life in ways I would not have imagined possible back when I started this blog.

And I have Jen. I was looking for a friend like her for a long time and instead of finding someone like her, I found her. I am very, very lucky.

One year ago today I mooned a bus full of people.
Three years ago today my blog had a guest poster.
Four years ago today I continued my obsession with pooping while giving birth. This this time with a twist.


shyestviolet said...

good friends appear in a delightfully random manner :) when they do, just hold on tight. what blessings they are.

Stimey said...

This is such a wonderful love story. It's great to find the friend you need and want. It's so rare to find that person, and so important.

Although I'm a little jealous that she gets to know you in person.

(Does that come off as weird and stalkerish? I'm afraid it does.)