• Gareth Ellis

Welcome to the World

On Friday morning, 9.42am, on the 23rd of November something truly magical happened – Jess and I became parents. Our little boy decided that he didn’t want to wait until his due date and instead he wanted to come and say hello a few days early. After what seemed like a long, 9-month wait, we were then greeted with a labour that started around 54 hours before he finally made his first appearance – but more on that later. Let me take you back to the start. It seems like forever since May of this year when we were safely able to reveal to everyone that we were expecting him. That day was as special as it got for us at that point and you wonder how things can get better. Now, 5 days in to his existence it seems like forever that he’s been gracing us with his handsome little face. Fast forward 8 weeks from that first scan and we found out we were having a boy. We’d initially set out hoping for a girl, but then afterwards realised that all we wanted was a baby that was happy and healthy. All of our scans revealed he was definitely that. So, as regular readers of this blog will know we then went about decorating, buying and baby showering before we found ourselves with far more stuff for him than we had ourselves. Fast forward again to November 21st. Jess woke me at around 6am to tell me that she’d been experiencing the first signs of labour. So I excitedly jumped out of bed, we hugged and I waited, calm in the knowledge that my role during this time was to stay calm and relaxed so Jess could get on with contractions. I made myself available, at the beck and call of my beautiful wife as she, calmly herself, went about her role. After about 24 hours and contractions that were increasing in intensity, but not frequency, we called the hospital and they called us in. Oh my god, this was it, we were going to meet our son on the Thursday- oh how wrong we were. We got to hospital and they admitted Jess after finding out she was around 4cm dilated. Great, or so we thought. That was about 6pm, by 12pm she’d dilated another 2cm and by 4am that figure stayed the same. Still though Jess stayed her amazing self. Up to that point she’d barely made a sound through any contractions and she’d only sworn once, but the pain intensified and Jess had an epidural. She looked at me with tears and said she felt like a failure. She was (and still is) anything but. From there things seemed to fly by and by 9.42am, after forceps and the ventouse, he flew into the world. I have no shame in saying I sobbed. I sobbed for around 20 minutes while he was cleaned and then loaded on to mummy’s chest for some skin to skin. Even after we’d cuddled and comforted him the tears still came as I was overcome with emotions. Love for both Mummy and baby, who had been through so much already. Jess had technically laboured for around 54 hours and still had the strength to raise a smile. Pride for Jess in the feat she had just achieved, I tell you mothers are all superheroes for giving birth but Jess really didn’t make much fuss at all, I was, and am so proud of her. Lastly, it was joy. Tears of joy at the most beautiful little boy I’ve ever seen. Joy that after so many months of waiting I got to lay eyes on him, kiss him, hug him and give him a name – Rupert Simon Ellis. He now has a lovely piece of both of our families in his name (Simon is my father in law) although we’re not too sure where Rupert has come from. And now a brief word from the lady of the hour: Jess, take it away.

Lady of the hour? Try many, many hours! When I bowled in to tell Gareth my labour had started, I naively thought we would be back that night, bundle of joy in our arms with my picture perfect water birth having gone to plan. Turns out, that wasn’t on the cards: no water birth as I had to be continuously monitored, no moving around as baby had to be monitored too and no drug free birth as little man was so stubborn and needed to be helped along, meaning contractions came thick and fast which I couldn’t quite cope with. As Gareth mentioned, ‘giving in’ to an epidural made me feel like I took the easy way out. But now looking back, it gave me the release I needed, and at the end of the day he is here and that’s all that matters. I ended up with a ventouse and forceps delivery, and was told I would more than likely have had an emergency c section if I hadn’t have had the epidural. It’s just sod’s law that the epidural failed 3 times so I ended up dilating to 9cm on gas and air… Now he’s here, my days are a whirlwind of feeding, nappies, napping and wanting to just stare at him at all times. He is my perfect little boy, and makes me laugh on an hourly basis (especially when he fountain wees during his nappy changes- apparently trying to catch wee in your hands isn’t so effective!). So Rupert, you’re finally here. I can’t remember what life was like without you. You’re the best. Just don’t expect a brother or sister any time soon…

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