And so I had a feeling that Saturday 5th August 2017 was going to be our last weekend as just the two of us, so standing at the kitchen sink looking onto the garden I thought; “we should make the most of it“………….that’s right, I decided to clean the windows. A job that my wife had been asking me (amongst many others) to do over the past month.
Just as I finished the last window, my wife told me that she thought she was having contractions, occurring every half an hour.
If this was true, things were about to get real I thought. “Right, I am getting the bags in the hallway and I want you to talk me through each one, so I know what is in them and why those items are in there” I said.
So we sat down and went through each bag, it occurred to me that I didn’t have a clue what was in each of the four bags and I felt that we had so much stuff we could have been going away for a week. I was sent to get some items from the nursery, it suddenly dawned on me that I knew where nothing was, sure I made all the furniture, but I did not know what was in which draw. It was time to get a grip! So the next task was to find the trusty thermos.
As the afternoon went on, and the contractions become closer together, my wife asked me to take over from her and start recording them on an App she had downloaded.
Me: “Can I get you..”
“Don’t talk to me during contractions!” my wife said
I thought I noted that down, but when I forgot and asked her a question I got the same reply “I TOLD YOU NOT TO TALK TO ME” – lesson learnt, always listen. Normally when my wife talks to me I adopt a pattern of “Yes“, “Yes“, “No” and whatever is being said it falls nicely within the conversation; it didn’t apply to this scenario.
My wife: “Will you massage my back please?”
Me: “OK” reluctantly.
After I finished, a contraction started, worse than what she had had before “I don’t want you to massage my back again” followed.
As we waited for the contractions to get closer together we watched some Netflix, I had made sure my wife was as comfortable as she could be, made dinner and got her anything she needed. Another contraction came as we were watching TV. I didn’t press pause;
“DON’T YOU THINK IT WOULD HAVE BEEN NICE TO PRESS PAUSE?”
My wife normally talks through programs for longer than 45 seconds so I didn’t see it as a big deal, but I did not make that mistake again. What was a half an hour programme turned out to be a lot longer.
My wife “apparently its good to have a bath”
Me: “Ok that will be nice”
My wife: “Can you run it and be in the bathroom with me so you can record the contractions”
I wasn’t sure if she was being serious, what was to follow I have never done;
My wife: “You see that yellow tub there, can you get some scrub and rub it on my feet please.”
Unbelievable, I wasn’t sure if she was taking advantage of the situation or being deadly serious. Still, I just got on and dealt with it.
We called the hospital when the contractions got to 2-3 minutes apart, and were told to come in. My first thought was “good timing wife, its 10:30pm the car park will be empty, great start“.
Then I went into auto pilot, the laughter had to stop – I carefully and precisely packed everything into the car, double double checking we had everything as I knew my neck would be on the line otherwise. My wife was the second to last item to go into the car, I escorted her and closed the door behind her. I then returned to the house to get the thermos.
Just as I got in my wife said “could you pass me that drink and open it please”
It was one of those drinks that you have to pierce the foil with the straw, I did it and it squirted all over my shorts and groin “great! I am going to look like a fool rolling up to hospital with a wet groin, they will think I am the patient!”
We arrived at hospital in a sensible time, parked easily and I put 1-4 hours on the car in the hope my wife would go into active labour and free 24 hour parking would apply.
My wife: “where’s the loo? I think I am going to be sick”
Me: “ This way, follow me!”
Three steps later my wife was sick on the floor, what a way to introduce ourselves!