Elliot is 6 days old
1 day until Nieve’s anniversary
My boy is here. He made it. We made it.
We named him Elliot, a name I love but one that also means ‘battle’ ‘with strength and right’ ‘bravely and truely’ ‘boldly and rightly’. All those words feel very apt for the baby who has brought me hope through a time of utter devastation.
The morning of the C section I was terrified. Not of the procedure but I suddenly felt terrified of meeting my baby. The idea of a live healthy baby felt alien and I was suddenly flooded with all the anticipation, fear and expectation that most other mothers experience from the moment of that positive pregnancy test.
I’d met with the anethatist the previous day. Coincidentally he was a friend of my friend Fiona who had been with me through my labour as I’d given birth to Nieve. It felt very apt that she was now linked to our second child’s birth through the presence of her friend.
The anethatist was amazing. I’m pretty sure he was instrumental in getting my procedure put to the top of the list that morning; recognising the significance of the agony of any more waiting time for us. I felt safe and supported. My baby was on the way.
When Elliot was born at 10:10am he was taken by the midwife to be cleaned and checked. It was a surreal feeling; was he really here? Was he ok? Was he alive? Was he normal? The midwife raised some initial concerns that he was a bit listless and called the paediatrician in to check him. I was terrified; was there something wrong with him? Would he die? In the end they deemed that he was just a bit shell shocked and Concluded that he was fine.
They brought him to us in a blanket and placed him into Matt’s arms. His big bright beautiful eyes starred right into mine and he studied my face so intently. It melted my heart. Our son.
I don’t often refer to Elliot as the rainbow baby. I feel like it steals something from his value and robs something from Nieve’s. But he is a blessing. An absolute blessing that has soothed my broken heart, restored some joy and restored a bit of magic and faith into my broken world.
The anxieties I had about his wellbeing during pregnancy have eased so much now he’s here. His kick counter lays redundant on the shelf. Frozen at 145- a record of the movements he made right up to the moment before I went into theatre.
Last night I lay a hand on his blanket in the darkness as he slept. The movements that I’d monitored so closely in the womb felt similar on the outside. I recognised the feel of his legs, knees and feet and it was strange to attach those familiar sensations with real limbs. I counted each twitch in my old familiar way and fell asleep myself.
Today Elliot is six days old. He’s amazing, just like his sister in the stars. My rainbow baby. My hope. My blessing.