January 31, 2011. That is the day that my first child will be brought into this world. It feels really weird to know the exact date, but that's the situation we find ourselves in. We went in to see our doctor yesterday to get an update on the baby and, as she still hasn't moved out of her comfy, cozy position, we decided to give her a deadline. You've got five days, Wish! Then we're coming in after you!
When we tell people that we aren't going to be able to deliver natually as we had planned, we often get asked if we're ok with it. Of course, we're a bit disappointed that things aren't shaping up the way we had envisioned; We spent a lot of time working with our awesome doula and hypnobirth coach, learning how to work through a natural childbirth, and were very much looking forward to the process of meeting our little girl for the first time in a natural, calm way. But really, we've made our peace that this is the situation we're in, and we know that the thing to focus on is the fact that once it's all said and done, we're going to meet our daughter for the first time.
Since this change of plans has become somewhat official, we've been doing a lot of reading about what to expect in the process and how a cesarean birth changes the postpartum experience. While the birth itself will be a lot shorter, the time spent recovering in the hospital can take several more days than a natural birth. This means our Go Bag is going to have to get a little bigger with enough clothes and supplies to keep us comfortable for the better part of a week. We found an article at Babyzone that was really helpful in getting us mentally and practically prepared for a cesarean. It takes you step-by-step through the process so you know what to expect and what you can ask your doctor about if you have certain things you would like to do differently. For example, it is standard practice in some hospitals that the mother's arms be restrained during the procedure, and oftentimes they won't allow the father in the room when the anesthesia is being delivered. Knowing that in advance, we'll be able to ask about making an exception to these cases if we follow certain protocols. We were also able to talk with our doctor about having our little girl handed directly to one of us right after she is delivered so we can start the bonding process as soon as possible. This is usually not how the post-delivery is handled, so it was good that we knew to ask about it. Really, despite the situation not going according the plan we had in mind when we started on this journey, we have a lot of good options and a really great team with us, so we're looking forward to Monday.
Considering we have all of five days left to go out on the town without worrying about things like sitters, car seats, and baby wraps, we've declared this week our own personal restaurant week! As financially irresponsible as it may be, we're committed to eating dinner out every day this week. We kicked things off Monday night with a pepper burger and buffalo chicken strips at Clintonville's finest pub, O'Reilly's. Last night we hit up the North Market and had Clever Crow pizza for the very first time, followed up with a banana nutella waffle from Taste of Belgium, and tonight was Betty's. We're taking recommendations for the rest of the week, though I'm pretty sure we want to fit The Burgundy Room and Dirty Frank's in there somewhere.
So this coming Monday evening, we'll be certified, real-life parents. We've got five days to finish getting whatever we need ready and live it up dual-income-no-kids style as much as possible. Any must-visit restaurants we should hit up? What do you recommend for two very-soon-to-be parents on their last couple of days of frivolity and care-free living?