Kimmie moved downstairs and we were planning on moving Owen and the new baby into her room. I pulled off the baseboards to paint and found a small hole. In the small hole was carpenter ant frass. Carpenter ants had built a colony because a leak in the roof had softened the studs a little. All in all I ripped up 3 studs worth of drywall to expose the colony and kill it with Orthoboric Acid Dust. I'm taking quotes now to have the roof repaired, the studs replaced, and the drywall fixed. It could range in the thousands. It's basically a complete nightmare.
We had a doctor's appointment on Thursday, July 30th at 2:45pm to see if Annalisa's pregnancy was progressing. It wasn't... Her due date was July 28th so she was overdue. I was cool with waiting. You see, August 1st is the cutoff for soccer age. Basically, if you're born on August 1st, you'll be the oldest on your soccer team. If you're born on July 31st, you'll be the youngest on your soccer team. August 1st is the cutoff for soccer age. Look it up. So, when Annalisa hadn't progressed at all from the week before, and we set her induce date for Saturday, 8am, August 1st, I was cool with that. But Xavier, as if pre-emptively declaring he's up to all the challenges life and his brothers have to offer, had other plans.
We put the boys down around 9pm and I watched the second half of Watchmen with Annalisa. By the way, if you don't know what Redbox is, you need to figure it out. I love it. The movie finished and I went up to bed. Annalisa had been having some mini contractions, but nothing serious, she'd been having sporadic ones for a while. She went downstairs to play Minesweeper because Bejeweled Blitz was unavailable because our internet was down. It was then that her contractions got to be more regular and she determined that she had to start monitoring their frequency. It was 2:30am when she woke me and said, "We should probably go to my brother's, the contractions are 5 minutes apart and lasting for about a minute."
To be honest, it's not as jaw droppingly scary as it used to be. We're so much older than we were. So much more prepared. So much more ready. We had been praying for this moment for months, and all the other serious prayer warriors have had our back. It's amazing how spiritual stability and maturity can translate into emotional and even physical strength. Our plan was to go to Ryan's house which was only 10 minutes from Henry Ford West Bloomfield. All our other children were born at St. Joe's in Pontiac.
Henry Ford West Bloomfield. Maple Road, just west of Drake. Remember it if you're having a baby, you'll be glad you did.
Somewhere along the line the plan changed to going straight to the hospital instead of hanging at Ryan's until the right time. We got to the hospital, went to Emergency, went to Triage. At that point it was around 3:10am, being so early we missed all the construction traffic. Annalisa's mom met us shortly after in Triage. The contractions were getting pretty bad. The timing was:
2:30am - Annalisa wakes me because contractions are 5 min apart lasting a minute.
3:28am - admitted into Triage room 5 with bubbly Debra as our nurse. I shouldn't have had that protein shake with milk before I went to bed. Annalisa is 2cm dilated, 90% effacement. If she doesn't progress in the next hour, we might be sent home, because the contractions are strangely getting further apart.
5am - Progress! Yes! Annalisa was worried about this not being the real thing because of the cramps this time were in her back and not her legs, which was the case with the other boys. She's 4-5 cm dilated, and we were moved to Labor and Delivery Room 10 instead of being sent home. Dr. Capili was on his way. Annalisa was given a nubane IV to help take the edge off the pain.
5:30am - broke the bag of waters and the fluid was clear, which was good
6:18am - Annalisa's favorite part, the epidural was administered
6:25am - 7-8cm
7:20am - 9-10cm.. yes! Time to start pushing.
After a half an hour of pushing, there was progress, but not much. I had forgotten my only job of counting to ten during each push. I was just watching while I held her left leg.
Since it was determined that Xavier's head was a little sideways, the doctor suggested she lay on her side and try pushing that way. 2 pushes and 5 minutes after she laid on her left side...
7:55am - Xavier born!
Xavier Ambrosio Agustin
7 pounds 9.3 ounces
21 inches long
Right now, I'm blogging from Labor and Delivery Room 10. There's a wireless keyboard and a 36in. LG flat panel monitor. It's called the GetWell Network. Movies on demand, internet, TV. The nursing staff and doctors have been amazingly accommodating. I think in all my life I've never experienced so many people so concerned with our well being. This has been an excellent hospital experience and I don't want to take a second of it for granted.
Earlier today, I got all pensive and Annalisa asked what was wrong. I said, "There's nothing wrong. There's absolutely nothing wrong." I feel so incredibly blessed to be making that type of statement. I mean, I've got rotten wood and carpenter ant damage along with a leaky roof above Owen and Xavier's room. Annalisa was laid off on July 28th, her due date. I could literally lose my job at any point in time working at GM. The older three brothers seem to need more and more attention with every passing day that seems to get shorter and shorter.
And truly, there's absolutely nothing wrong. Truly truly I say to you. The peace that passeth human understanding is a storm in my center these days. Not because we have a new life that we probably can't afford. Right now, I'm reaping some of the fruits of the Spirit. At the beginning of this year I was trapped in a prison of my own making. Trapped in with bars of stress and anxiety about the future. I shared with my Bible Study that I was a mental and emotional wreck. Always worrying about losing my job. Always worrying about not spending enough time with the boys. Two Bible Study members heard my cry for help and answered with, "You should go to Confession. You should go once a month."
The merits of the Sacrament of Confession have been debated and argued throughout the centuries between Catholics and Protestants. Having grown up Protestant and now a Catholic, both sides of the argument dwell deep in my psyche. But having gone to partake of the Sacrament of Confession once or twice a month now for almost seven months, I can say that I understand a little more.
There's just something different about saying it out loud to another human being. All the worst things I feel I've done in the past few weeks, all the evil thoughts, all the sins I know of. There's just something about how the words leave the lips and fall on human ears. There's something different about the Act of Contrition. There's something different about hearing the words "absolve" and "Go with the Peace of Christ." There's just something different about it. Because of it, there's something different about me too.
Every week I'm accountable in The Struggle Against the Objectification of Women. I've named it just now because it's that rampant that serious. Males in this world sometimes don't even know that they're being destroyed from the inside out by something much much worse than cancer. It's like Cancer Soup for the Soul. That's what you're consuming when you're acting like every other consumer who eats up all the sexual innuendo in commercials, all the racy magazine ads, and all the gratuitous nudity in movies. I'm accountable weekly in The Struggle Against the Objectification of Women. It's that accountability that helps me in the effort to raise little men into real men.
Xavier means New Home.
The process of holiness is called sanctification.
This mind is cleaner. This body is cleaner. This temple is cleaner.
My home is damaged, Annalisa's job is lost, the economy is broken.
This Home is New.
Welcome Xavier, we love you so much, and I humbly accept the tremendous responsibility of being your father, and blanketing you with the Love from the only other Father who could love you more than me.