around 1am on Friday morning
Jayme tapped me on the shoulder and said
"honey, i'm having contractions..."
i was sleeping oh so peacefully
not exactly renowned for being the world's fastest wake-up-on-the-spot guy
i said "ok..."
and promptly fell back to sleep
a few minutes later tap tap again
"i think this baby is coming NOW."
i was up in a flash this time
i ran and got my phone
so i could use the stopwatch function
to time the contraction intervals
i was in the daddy zone now
they were only 3 minutes apart
i got her a large glass of water
we timed for another 15 minutes
they didn't go away
Jayme said "it's time to call the doctor"
we quickly woke G up
who groggily rolled onto the floor in a ball
"is it time for cereal now?"
he thought it was already morning
our tired little prophet had predicted all of this yesterday when he proclaimed
"i think my sister is coming tomorrow!!"
he was right
we left the house around 2am
raced around the corner to drop G off at a friend's house
they were all waiting at the door for us
a drunk driver edged down the street and came within inches
of side-swiping a parked car
on Knox-Henderson it was a traffic zoo
all the club and bar goers making their way home
or to after parties
we almost got hit at the stop sign on Henderson as we tried
to merge with traffic
Jayme actually let out a startled yelp as they swerved in front of us
finding the drop-off point at Baylor was easy
within minutes they had us in a private room
nurses shuttling in and out
performing various nursely duties
one stood a computer and asked a million and one questions
"what is your name?"
"have you used intravenous drugs during this pregnancy?"
"do you have H.I.V.?"
"who's your favorite Beatle?"
as the 101 questions rolled i noticed Jayme's contractions were
becoming increasingly intense
i'm very observant you know
the first tip was that she was beginning to have problems speaking
and was gripping the sides of the bed and scrunching up her face
everyone else seemed perfectly calm though
until one nurse went below and came up with "she's at 9 centimeters!!"
at that moment all hell broke loose
they started scrambling around like the keystone cops
they whisked the bed down the hall and through some swinging doors
a nurse asked me to wait in the corridor
i stood there in my scrubs and paper hat
after a few minutes they told me i could come in
Jayme was sitting up on the operating table in obvious excruciating pain
while 4 or 5 of them wrangled with her
they were trying to administer the epidural
Jayme was cussing now
it was actually the mild garden variety type of bad language
i was impressed
i'd heard far worse from her at home
i was surprised that she was being so polite considering
the fact she was basically having a baby without anesthesia
then someone instructed "dad to be - please get in close and help hold her up!"
i was now an active participant?
no class? no training? they trusted ME?
i thought i was here to whisper sweet things in her ears
while suspiciously gruesome things went on south of the border
the next few minutes unfolded quickly
they plopped her down
and started shooting the drugs in
they threw up a big blue tent
so that we couldn't see anything down below
i sat on a low stool near her head
and tried desperately to say things that would help her not focus
on the intense pain and agony she was in
things like "picture yourself in a field on a beautiful sunny day
holding your baby..."
the baby was coming in like a DC9
i thought briefly that Kamikaze Nourallah had a nice ring to it...
now there was a slight trace of panic emitting from the people in blue
we had planned a C-section for various medical reasons i won't go in to
but Jayme just about had this baby the other way
with no pain relief!!!
at 3:54am our daughter was born
she cried very little when they set her in the bassinet
i saw her immediately
she was so small and dainty
grey eyes wide open and looking all around
newborns usually look like a space alien/great grandparent combo
but not this one
she was beautiful
a full head of dark wavy hair
she looked right at me studiously
my face peering down at her was one of the first things she saw
the first few moments of a child's life
are awe inspiring
there's nothing quite like it
they are so pure
as i sat and held my daughter in my arms for the first time
i felt an immense wave of tranquility wash over me
the world stopped
nothing else mattered but this little baby
there was no fear of anything
just love and joy
to think that i once thought there wasn't any room left in my heart
to love another as much as my wife and son
is laughable now
oh how wrong i was
our ability to love is infinite
it's pretty cool, isn't it?