Okay, so as my delay in posting might have indicated, the Big Bang occurred and it was quite a dramatic and not relaxing one, so things have been rather hectic.
Now I am not at all sure if guys are interested in harrowing birth stories, so perhaps I should just say, “Final score: mom and baby both good.” But I know that there are women who might be reading this (yes, I know that now), and that some of them might take a morbid delight in a catalogue of all the pain and anxiety they might possibly face during this process. And guys, you might want to know what the signs of impending delivery are. Furthermore, the genre demands some kind of narrative rather than a series of philosophical reflections. So I feel obliged to tell, albeit as briefly as I can, the events. The first instalment of the narrative follows.
Pregnant Lady has dinner with a friend on a Tuesday evening. Feels crampy after dinner; it passes. An hour later she feels a cramp again, a bit worse. She has a feeling that this is it, but she doesn’t tell me yet, as I am happily downloading techno at my computer and drinking a delightfully dry rosé (La Vieille Ferme Cotes du Ventoux, which comes in a screw-top and is only $12) and there is no need to worry me. (Compassionate girl!) When we go to bed at around 12:30 she says she has a stomache-ache and needs to sleep downstairs on the sofa because otherwise she will disturb me. No problem.
She comes upstairs at 1:30 saying, um, sorry to bother you, but I think this is it. The cramps have turned into intense pain, and the pain crests about once every ten minutes, leaving her breathless and moaning.
Okay, battle-stations: I leap, or crawl, into action, the effects of the rosé making me less than efficient. I do blurrily remember that we are not supposed to go to the hospital until the contractions are five minutes apart. So we wait. This is more pleasant for me than it is for her, but I do manage to stay awake, at least for most of the time.
At 5:30 they are definitely five minutes apart. Call cab (they have told us to do this, as parking near the hospital is like renting a room at the Crillon by the hour, and we might be there for a couple of days). Make cab driver nervous. Get to hospital at 6:15, with PL very unhappily crying and twisting every few minutes. (This can make a fellow, particularly a fellow who likes to take charge of things and fix them, feel distinctly helpless.) Hospital staff are extremely chill, indeed almost uninterested. They say we might have come too soon. We might have to go walk around for a while. Or even go home and come back. PL is laughing hard at the idea of walking around. I am not feeling absolutely tip-top either, effects of rose having faded and left me with grinding dentist’s-drill headache. Great: I am going to be hungover for my son’s birth.
Finally hot resident doc comes in – looking to be about 18, in yoga pants, hoodie and cute little undershirt. (This will prove to be the first in a series of extraordinarily beautiful caregivers, both male and female, at Mount Sinai hospital in Toronto, a theme I am so fascinated with I will develop anon.) Anyway, she says PL is definitely in labour. No kidding, says PL. And we, I say, are Oscar Mike.
Did I say I was going to narrate this briefly? Sorry, changed my mind. Next few hours will be in my next post.
Image courtesy of El Patojo.