Welcome to the World, Son

by Fat Daddy, Esq. on January 20, 2011

My child arrived just the other day,
He came to the world in the usual way.

He’d say, “I’m gonna be like you, dad.
You know I’m gonna be like you.”

Sandy & Harry Chapin, Cat’s in the Cradle

My child arrived just the other day, he came to the world in an unusual way. His moniker on this blog will be Thing 3. His sisters, Thing 1 and Thing 2, are thrilled. My wife, Hot Mama (HM), is also delighted beyond words. In addition to once again feeling a great sense of pride and responsibility, I am relieved that he is here and everyone is healthy.

I don’t know if I have discussed on here before how my wife is somewhat into natural living. I have called her a hippie, but that is probably not quite correct because she is more conservative politically. She is also a registered nurse. I tell you this to help explain a few things about my son’s arrival.

My wife has always been interested in midwifery and home births. I have never been interested in such things; to me doctors and hospitals exist for a reason. We had to have a specialist for Thing 1’s birth but for Thing 2 and Thing 3, as a compromise, we agreed to go to a midwife with hospital delivery privileges. The problem with that plan was the closest midwife was about an hour away from our home.

Hot Mama had a midwife appointment and we knew things were getting close. We packed bags to take to the hospital and bags for our girls so we could drop them off at my parents’ house. I fell asleep around midnight but woke somewhere around 1:15 a.m. realizing that I kept hearing HM breathing through contractions and they seemed very close together. We started timing contractions on her iPhone (of course there’s an app for that) and they were already three minutes apart.

We decided to get the girls in the car to take them to my parents. I packed the car and loaded the girls in their seats. I came back to check on HM and told her that we really needed to get in the car and get on the road. HM walked down the hallway trying to make it to the garage to get in the car and as she reached the end of the hallway, her water broke. I came in again to see what was happening and she told me we were going to have to go to the local hospital because there was no way we were making it to our planned hospital.

Then another contraction came and she realized there was no stopping it, this baby was coming NOW! She told me to call 911 and get some towels. It wasn’t like in the movies when they say “go get some towels” and someone calmly walks out of the room. It was more like “go get some towels” and I rushed out of the room thinking “oh shit, is this really happening?” I tried to grab some of our older beach towels. Looking back it seems strange I would be concerned with making sure the nice towels were spared.

I called 911 and while I was on the phone I saw my son’s head hanging from my wife’s body as she stood in our small bathroom. I told the 911 operator the baby was coming out, set my phone down and caught my son and handed him to his mom. I was amazed at the sight of my wife standing in our bathroom, holding my newly born child so I grabbed my phone. I told her “I know this is weird but please look at me” and I snapped a picture of my happy but shocked wife holding our son. HM sat down, drying him off and making sure he was okay. He started to cry and I experienced a huge relief.

I went back to the garage to check on our girls. I told them “don’t freak out but an ambulance is on its way and your brother is here.” The girls went in the bathroom, completely oblivious to the mess that surrounded them, and were so excited to get to see him right away.

My parents showed up to take care of the girls and shortly after that the paramedics arrived and started tending to mother and baby. HM delivered the placenta about five minutes later without complication. The paramedic started to clamp the cord (we had not yet cut it) but then HM started to pass out and he went to work on her.

I held my son in a few towels with the placenta, still attached to baby, in a plastic container below. I held him during the ride from our house to the hospital. Once in the ER, mother and child were checked out and HM passed out again. After they got some IV fluids started, she started feeling much better. Miraculously everyone was fine. We had a good day at the hospital and got to come home less than 24 hours after the ordeal began.

In the moment, there was no time to really be scared or uptight, we just had to react to the situation and get through it. Now that I have had some time to process the situation I am very thankful for how things turned out. I am glad we did not get out on the highway as we would have certainly delivered him in the car on the side of the road. I am thankful that my mom was willing to clean up the bathroom which looked like a horribly brutal crime scene. I am glad there were no complications and everyone was healthy. I am thankful that I have been blessed with another child.

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