They tell you it only happens like that in the movies, but no… the sudden whoosh of water was surprising and like a scene from a cheesy sitcom. What they don’t tell you – or at least didn’t tell me – is that it keeps coming. Another whoosh and then a trickle. Not stopping.
Nothing else was happening. I was happily watching the Tonight Show with my hubby & my girl, up late in the last burst of summer. Go to bed, she told me, get some rest and let your body do what it needs to do. So I trotted off to bed, sleeping snuggled to my little girl for the last time it’d be just us.
I woke with a start, tensing beneath the contraction. It felt long, tight. Another one washed over me way before I imagined one would. Out came the handy dandy contraction timer app I was so proud of finding. One minute contractions, three minutes apart.
Tiff walked in looking adorably rumpled, got settled in and off we went. The pain was more fierce and it was all I could do to grip the door handle and breathe as we drove. 2:30 am and no one on the road, we ran red lights. No one seemed to mind.
They wheeled me in, sending Jeff off to park the car. The nurse’s calm chatter was a jarring counterpoint to the still wall of gripping contractions with little reprieve between. I could barely sign my name to be admitted.
Nurses flittered around, sent me to the bathroom, asked questions as though we were at tea. Is this your first birth? Is your older one a boy or a girl? Do you know what you’re having this time? “Stop asking me questions!” I barked. Didn’t they know I had to focus? Didn’t they know I could hardly breathe?
No midwife, no doctor, no space between contractions. I couldn’t not push. Barely aware of the noise I was making, other than uttering “I can’t do this” once or twice, gripping Jeff’s fingers as tight as I could, I pushed. And there she was. Perfect.