After last week's fiasco, the doctor had an appointment scheduled for today to induce labor. My Bride was looking forward to this about as much as a root canal, but if it was either that or let Squirmy take his own sweet time about making his debut, then she was all for shortening the suspense. If he wasn't going to come out, we were going in after him.
However, just because he apparently likes to retain the initiative, he decided he would skip ahead a day, and was Sameul Leland Grady was born yesterday:
My Bride woke me up about 2:45 to tell me her water broke. She thinks. But she's not quite sure. (With the Critter, her water never broke). I calmy suggested that this means we should get our asses to the hospital five minutes ago, but she wanted to call the Emergency Midwife Line. They told her to hangout for a while and keep an eye on things. Sure, her water broke, but she wasn't actually having contractions. Which was weird. But thus reassured, I went back to sleep. Because one of us should at least look a little rested.
Contractions started for real just after 4:30 in the morning. At just before 6, my Bride woke me up (if there's one thing I learned in the Army, it's how to sleep through anything). By 6:30, we were at the hospital.
I was seriously worried that we'd have to deliver that kid in the car on the way there. Contractions were 6 minutes apart when we left the house. By the time I came hurtling through the backroads of Chester, they were 4 minutes apart.
An hour (and no pain killers) later, Squirmy was born.
There were a few differences between this delivery and the Critter's. For one, the whole NHS process is different. While I never felt like my Bride received anything but excellent care, the whole process is more gritty. In the States, I felt as if I was kept miles away from the dirty part of birth, whereas here, I was right there, seeing all the fluid and gunk that comes along with labor (these are the things they never warn you about. Or maybe they do. We managed to skip all the birthing classes both times around). Somewhere in the early stages of the process, I got a little light headed. In my defense, it was a million degrees in the delivery room, and I hadn't gotten a full night's sleep. (See above). The two midwives suggested that I look a little pale, and should sit down and drink some ice water. My Bride, who was mid-contraction, wasn't sure if they were talking to me or her. I recovered and a few minutes later, the kid was breathing delivery-room air, looking at me as if he wasn't sure what all the fuss was about.
As messy as the whole process was, we're just glad you're here, Squirmy.