If we had to choose a Mr Men character to represent Cameron at the moment, I think we’d pick Mr Solemn. We have discovered that we have quite a pensive, contemplative little chap. A week ago Cameron started smiling socially and we thought smiles would now rain down aplenty but not so. Don’t get me wrong – he’s still smiling, but there is a limited window for it each day!
It appears that like his dad, Cameron is a morning person as he is at his most cheerful when he wakes up around 6:30. For a few minutes he’s Mr Happy and smiles abound but that seems to be it for the day. If you miss ‘The Grin Gap’ you can try as hard as you like to elicit a smile, but all you’ll get is a strange look and you can just tell he’s thinking, ‘My but my fellow humans are an odd breed.’
Col and I are starting to look increasingly ridiculous as we attempt to amuse our son outside of The Grin Gap. Dancing around the house, singing songs, pulling bizarre faces – none have the desired effect. However, the meditative look on Cam’s face as he contemplates our antics never fails to make us laugh so I suppose in some way we are succeeding in our quest!
At 17:25 on 26 August, Cameron Mervyn Rip was born! He arrived a whole month ahead of schedule yet clocked in at 2.6 kilograms. In order to try and process everything that’s happened in the last 48 hours I thought I’d write about it. Plus I am confined to my bed at the moment so there’s not much else I can do.
The story starts on Saturday. Colin and I were at the shops getting the last items we needed for Cameron’s arrival. On the way home I started having contractions and realised the baby was attempting another prison break. So we fetched my bags (a lesson well learnt from last time) and headed for the hospital.
As I was only 35 weeks pregnant they decided to stop the labour with medication. Having been through this process only a month ago Col and I took for granted that it would work. I started popping the pills and the wait began.
Saturday night’s observation showed that the contractions had subsided. I urged Col to go to his golf game the next morning, which he duly did, leaving for Joburg at 6:30. And then at 08:00 the contractions started up again. The doctor decided to give the meds more time to work and told me we’d reassess in the evening. But by 10:30 they had just become more regular. The suppression wasn’t working and our baby was on his way into the world.
Col and I now had some decisions to make. The doctor was happy to let me try for a natural delivery but warned me that I would have an incredibly long and difficult labour because I was only 35 weeks. After giving it some thought I decided not to put my body through a process that it wasn’t ready for and elected to have a caesarean.
And so at 17:00 I went into theatre. I was incredibly nervous – about the procedure but also about what would happen to Cameron once he’d been delivered. Col was my absolute hero and supported me through it like a champion. Initial checks on our boy showed that he was having a bit of trouble breathing but I was allowed to hold him for a minute or two before they took him to the Neo Natal ICU.
Cameron was put on oxygen and had x-rays taken of his lungs which showed that he might have a mild infection. While Col kept an eye on our son I was stitched up, cleaned up and taken to the maternity ward. The next few hours passed in a blur of smiling grandparents but at about 20:30 they wheeled me into ICU so I could see my baby.
I haven’t been able to see him yet this morning but Col checked in on him before he left for work. They haven’t put him on antibiotics which we assume means he doesn’t have an infection. He is also no longer on oxygen so it’s seems he’s doing superbly. Col says he looks like a giant next to all the other preemies!
That’s all the necessary info at this stage I think. Now I’m going to make the most of this down time and have a nap!