Sweet 16! Part 2
In my previous blog, I wrote about how I gave birth to our daughter Lexi in Slovenia, 16 years ago. This did not go as expected and hoped. I woke up in the operating room after an emergency cesarean and saw Bine sitting next to me. He told me they would have to remove my uterus because they couldn’t stop the bleeding. At the time I couldn’t comprehend what that meant and just wanted everything to be okay. In my experience, this moment of being “awake” lasted only a minute. I don’t remember anything more about it.
I was put back under anesthetic so they could reopen my belly to remove my uterus. Bine had to sign a form to give permission for this. He insisted on seeing me first because he had been waiting outside in the hall all this time and heard me scream. After about 10 minutes, a nurse came out and said everything was fine. Of course, Bine was terrified and didn’t believe her. Only after about 20-30 minutes, a doctor came out and told him what was going on. My uterus was supposed to shrink after the c-section, which didn’t happen and I was bleeding a lot. I have been given a syringe three times to try to initiate the shrinkage, while they normally do this twice max. A sister massaged my uterus. That was the pain I felt when I woke up in the operating room, so I tried to push her hands away. She told me this later. If they hadn’t removed my uterus, I most likely would have bled to death. I had already lost more than 2 liters of blood. Bine had to insist, but in the end, the doctor agreed that he could come in to see me for a few minutes and that’s why they woke me up.
My next memory is seeing my father’s face above mine and I remember I tried to smile at him. Bine had called my parents that morning to inform them that the baby would be born that day, so Mom and Dad jumped straight into the car to drive the twelve hours to Slovenia. On the way, Bine called them to say that everything was fine with the baby, but not with me. They still tell me every year how they know exactly at what point of the journey they received the call and that they always remind each other when they pass by that point. I woke up from the anesthesia in the middle of the night and a sweet nurse asked me if I had already seen my baby. That, of course, was not the case. I only realized then that I was there because of a baby :). She was kind enough to go get Lexi so I could hold my baby for a little while. Being very tired, I then immediately fell asleep again and woke up at 6 in the morning. At that point, I actually felt pretty good, compared to everything I had experienced the day before. I immediately called Bine, who was still sleeping at home. He started crying when he heard me, that was such an intense moment because I hadn’t been able yet to realize how this experience had been for him. He had been so scared and was so relieved to hear my voice, knowing that I would be ok. He then got up and came over to the hospital as soon as possible. Mom and Dad also came to visit me that morning and everyone was amazed at how “fit” I was. Also the doctors and nurses. I got up by myself in the morning to go to the toilet, because I really couldn’t pee in a pot on the bed :).
After 6 days they finally let me go home. According to the rules, I should stay another day but I really just wanted to go home. It was the middle of summer, Lexi was born on July 15, and I was enjoying my sweet little girl. I remember nodding off with her on my stomach, in a deck chair in the garden. And the reaction of Larsen to his little sister was also so beautiful. He absolutely adored her and was so sweet to her.
Mom and Dad had gone back home after three days but would return for a week’s vacation after three weeks. We also had some good friends visiting from the Netherlands, who were camping out in our garden with their caravan. That was nice, because that way, we immediately had some help.
And now, suddenly, 16 years have past and that little person has grown into a big lady with a sweet and open character and her own will ;). Last Wednesday was her actual birthday, which we celebrated with a nice dinner at home with our family and a good family friend. Today is Sunday and we will celebrate her »sweet 16« one more time with some friends and family. It will be just a little bit longer before Lexi will start her own life as well. The empty nest syndrome is sneaking up on me L. She recently started her first summer job and that is going very well. She is full of plans and ideas for the near future and is slowly but surely detaching herself from us. And that is how it’s supposed to be. But for me, as the mother, it’s harder than I thought it would be. What will our future look like, Bine’s and mine? We want to grow old here, in this beautiful spot. Our children want to spread their wings and go out into the world. I can only hope they will always find their way back home ……