As a way of introduction my name is Damon. I am in my thirties, have a job with the government (at which I met my lovely wife Lauren), and was once the proud parent of nothing more than two cats and a dog. I’ve been described as a bit “organizationally obsessive” so when I heard the above words from the doctor my head took a bit of a spin.
The morning had started out normal enough. Lauren, who was at this point thirty weeks pregnant, was getting ready for work when she casually mentioned that she had a bit of light bleeding. We had some previous issues with bleeding related to a polyp, embraced into our lives and named Steve, so at the time I wasn’t too concerned. After she took the dog out for a quick walk around the block, the bleeding then worsening, we decided we had better take a trip to the hospital.
Things proceeded in much the way they had during our last visit (whereupon we chanced to meet the aforementioned Steve). We attended the registration desk, were brought into the obstetrics assessment room, and then hooked up to the nice monitor which let us hear baby’s heartrate. We figured it had to be Steve acting up so we weren’t worried, the news from the nurse that the doctor was busy this morning with three cesarean births was met with nothing more than smile a nod.
Lauren was taken off the monitor after about thirty minutes. The nurse told us the baby was fine and the cool TOCO graph (otherwise known as a contraction monitor) showed nothing of concern. When the nurse slipped off to deal with other patients we settled in to await the eventual arrival of the doctor. How naïve we were. I remember sitting there, the sounds of women in the beginning stages of labour around me, and intimating to Lauren that she was probably glad she still had some time before she would have to share that experience. Little did we know that our daughter had other plans.
After a few minutes Lauren started complaining of menstrual-like cramps. Neither of us knew anything about labour so we promptly did what any information-age person does; we started frantically googling for possible answers. Pre-term labour, Braxton-hicks contractions, ligament pain; all of there were posed as possible solutions. Both of us were pretty sure it couldn’t be labour, it was way too early, and besides, Lauren’s pregnancy had been flawless so far (with the exception of lovable polyp Steve of course). How could it possibly be labour?
Well, more to come… the baby beckons!