Wednesday, September 7, 2011

My Baby's Daddy

As Husband’s head has ballooned to immense proportions over the last 24 hours following my whole “he’s a saint because he buried my frozen cat” story, I feel the need to take it (him) down a notch.  Yes, Husband is generally wonderful, caring and understanding of all that is my daily insanity. 
The morning of April 29, 2003 began very early for me.  I was 9 months and one day pregnant and had spent the preceding evening walking the mall with Husband in an effort to get. The. Baby.  Out.  (Let me tell you, nothing gets you faster service than when someone asks when you’re due and you reply “oh, today.”  Or a better deal on a car.  Negotiating while  extremely pregnant has been our go-to car buying technique.  Yeah, I just did the whole “we’re pregnant” thing.  Works great.  Especially when “we” need to go to get McDonalds now because “our” pregnancy has caused insatiable cravings for their sweet sweet fries.)
I woke up at about 3 a.m. with something going on.  I had been constantly swinging between thinking I was going into labor and being terrified that I’d sound the alarms and launch the ships only to be told that I wasn’t actually in labor (with the understanding that I was obviously going to then be a horrible mother if I couldn’t even tell what my yet-to-be-born baby needed!) for the preceding three weeks.  But as I rocked on the living room glider and took in some fine fine 3 a.m. programming, things didn’t wind down.
Could it be?  Nah, no way.  I had already decided that this baby was never coming out, so this couldn’t possibly be labor. 
Oh well, I told myself, this is just another false alarm.  Let’s just watch some of Balkie’s antics on Perfect Strangers and calm the hell down.
For kicks, I started keeping track of any belly action in this little notebook we had been using. Because every extremely pregnant lady knows that the first question out of every person’s mouth from the time you call the hospital to the time you actually finally (blessedly) get a room is “how far apart are they?”  (My response was always “I want drugs, please.”)
Perfect Strangers changed seamlessly into Full House.  I lost track of time and flashed back to the good old middle school days of the TGIF line-up.  Suddenly, a doozie of a contraction tore me away from the hijinx of Uncles Joey and Jesse.  Whoa.  I looked at my watch, then my notebook.  I realized that I was at a good 6 minute pace that had been consistent for the last hour.  Showtime!
Time to get to the hospital, which meant that since “we” were pregnant, “we” needed to now get our butts out of bed and drive “our” pregnant selves to the ER. 
Yes, Husband had slept peacefully thus far.  But it was all good – nothing was really doing that required us both to be up.  Really, did he need to sit and watch me quietly contract?  But now it was necessary to inform Husband of his immediately impending fatherhood.

“Um, Husband?”  Gentle nudging as I prepared to experience that magical moment when I informed my one and only love that it was time to become a daddy.
“Babe?  HusBAND????”  More urgent nudging.  Practically shaking.  “Wake up, babe, it’s time.”  I smiled, anticipating his joy and finally welcoming his first child into the world.
Groggy head pops up.  “Whaaaa?”
“It’s time, sweetie, I’m in labor.”
Again, still groggy.  “Huhhh?”
“LA-bor, honey, I’m in LABOR.”  Starting to freak, but gamely keeping my pregnant hormones in check.
And then Husband turned to me, blinked a couple of times and uttered six tender words to express his deeply-held feelings to his laboring wife.
“Do I have to get up?”
No, no.  We’re good.  You go back to sleep. 
And.  He.  Did.
Hands off ladies, he’s all mine.

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