Labor Day

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Today is my own personal Labor Day. I went into labor with Robbie at 8:15 on 26 July 2009. For those of you who realize that Robbie’s birthday is the 28th, this is not a misprint. I was in labor with Robbie for forty-seven hours. This morning when Justin and I were reminiscing about this time last year, he moaned about how long my labor was.

I can only imagine how horrible it must have been for him. I went into immediate panic-mode and forced Justin to clean the entire house with me; we certainly couldn’t bring Robbie into a dirty home, never mind that the house was scheduled to be cleaned in three days (before I would be released from the hospital). The poor man had to take me to the hospital, only to be released an hour later and told to try to rest. Then he had to endure dinner with a woman enduring contractions. And let’s not forget that he got caught up on Mad Men while I (stupidly!) watched an I Didn’t Know I Was Pregnant marathon upstairs, not able to get the recommended rest.

I went into full-blown labor around 1:00 Monday morning, much to the detriment of any sleep Justin hoped to get. Concerned that I wasn’t hydrated (the reason I was sent home the first time), Justin gave me five glasses of diluted cranberry juice. When he handed me a sixth, I complained that I’d already had five. Justin thrust the glass in my hand and told me to “make it six”! I think forcing fluids down my throat was really the only way Justin felt like he could help. And, knowing now how I must have sounded, and knowing how Justin is in medical situations, I’m really glad he was able to function well enough to get me the water. We did finally head to the hospital around 5:30 the morning of the 27th, but that’s a reflection for another day — well, tomorrow.

So today I fully celebrated my own Labor Day. I sent Justin to work and dropped Robbie off at daycare. And the rest of the day was mine. I ran three miles in the morning and went to go see Grown Ups, relishing sitting in the cool, dark theater by myself and not sharing my popcorn and candy. I caught up on Big Brother and went to Marshall’s to buy a backpack to replace my soon-to-be-a-big-boy’s diaper bag. And then I celebrated in the best possible way.

I planned to take Robbie swimming at the reservoir for an hour before FINALLY closing on our refinance (and, yes, we did close!). However, Zhining, his daycare provider, had other plans. It was her birthday, and I had brought her a cake. Little did I know that she had saved it and decorated one of the rooms for a joint birthday party. There was a “Happy Birthday” banner hanging from the wall and Chinatown balloons dotting the walls. She put party hats on everyone and had her daughter take hundreds of pictures. She and Robbie blew out their candles and cut the cake together. Robbie had chocolate on his face and in his hair, on my feet, all over Zhining’s clothes. And it was the perfect Labor Day celebration.

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