Throughout April, I'm taking part in Lauren Wayne's Weekly Parenting Poetry Workshop. This week's theme is "Emerge", and within this theme, the first prompt: "Labor: Each minute in labor is suspended animation. Describe your labor in a poem." Last week's poem's theme was "Prepare".
Please do join me in writing! (Obviously) you don't need to be a poet to participate; you need only have a bit of courage to put words to paper (and then hit publish.) :)
The stream hit my back and time stopped. Suddenly the pain - deep, endless, unforgiving - abated. No longer knocked sideways off my feet with each backstabbing impact, I rocked on the stool, riding the waves. Alone with the water, despite a periodic invading scope, I was alone --- with your heartbeat. My hope.
I was unafraid.
Then, too soon, I was torn out of my own watery womb and back into the bright lights. Pain like an abyss. And the accursed beeping.
And hands and eyes and words: asking, prodding, suggestions thrown; but I'm mute.
Fear crept in nauseating swells up my neck and belly. Fast friends with hurt.
Hours pass. Fretful.
Fear: a stealthy, strong enemy. And doubt.
"You can't do this," doubt whispers with malice, climbing wretchedly up my arm to rest - cold - on my shoulder.
I agree, I succumb, and I go under screaming.
And still the beeping - terrifying, reassuring; my connection to you, my baby. Arresting sleep, yet keeping me from panic. I drift.
The tears, my pain, and I lie legless, helpless.
Oh blessed curse, painkiller. Physical agony gone briefly, I'm weakened by sickening gratitude.
Pain usurped by guilt.
This wasn't in the plan.
And yet still you came to me, from me, through me. Oh perfect baby, wrenched from my pelvis where you'd wedged yourself.
Birthed through a clean slice, vibrantly belting out your disapproval, voice urgent: I AM HERE!
Your immense strength nourished my own.
My daughter, my heart; you made me a mother.