It was just after Christmas 2004 when my dear wife informed me that she might be pregnant again. Just to clarify, either you are pregnant or you are not, there’s nothing in between. Either way, my Latino flower demanded to get the usual supply of pregnancy tests to be sure, and I visited our local dealer who was only too delighted to see me again, and gave me a bulk discount. Whatever happened to female intuition?
Some of you would have done the math quickly to realize that it was less than 9 months since we had our gorgeous daughter. Others would simply pad me on the back saying “Might as well get back on the saddle again – dirty bastard!”
The pregnancy tests confirmed my wife’s suspicion. She was indeed pregnant and the GP told her to make an appointment with the local maternity hospital. I was looking forward to meeting the doctor again; listening to his friendly banter and abuse was amusing, although my wife didn’t like some of his comments, especially “Next time I want to see a lot less of you!”.
The maternity wards are like small baby factories, full of emotional women and their submissive husbands (me included). When we arrived, we checked in at the ccounter with the “friendly” old nurses. My wife was given a little cup to pee in and was then asked to sit outside the designated obstetrician’s office. All staff were extremely stressed, which was probably not the most suitable vibes to have among pregnant women. The majority of doctors examining the women were rude and very direct – much to the amusement to the men. Not that we would ever show this, but we would laugh frantically on the inside every time the doctor said something about their size or boobs or virgina.
I felt like an old timer. It was less than a year since I had been there, so I knew all the drills and nodded at the right times, pretended to know the last day of the last period and the stare when hearing about the various trimesters. Some of the men in the waiting room was sweating like pigs going to slaughter and frantically trying to please their wives.
Another plus about the second pregnancy was that you do not have to attend the pre-natal classes. It was a walk in the park! …Little did I know!
The months passed by a lot faster than I remembered and before long we were at the end of the 2nd trimester. By the end of the 2nd trimester you might have been told the baby’s gender and have felt the baby move. We agreed not to bother with the gender as we just wanted a child.
I always missed the baby move. Every time the baby moved, my wife would call me, often by screaming loudly that the baby was moving and I had to hurry. As soon as I would touch the belly the baby would stop. However, I did manage to see the baby’s foot once or twice, pressing against the belly. That was pretty cool.
It was difficult to prepare yourself what to expect when having two kids. It was a 200% increase, so I was preparing myself for double the amount of work. Talking about mis-calculating!
Time just flies when you have fun and the 7 months passed quickly. We were getting closer to extend the family. I was still getting to terms with having our lives invaded by the first little dude and all the new skills you had to learn in a few days such as: heating up milk, sterilising bottles, washing baby clothes and changing nappies. How could we find more hours in the day for another dude?
At the end of July, yet another Saturday, my wife said she was not feeling the regularly movements from the baby. She also had had a nightmare about the baby crying for help – my wife and her sisters are apparently psychic. We got ready to go to the hospital to get checked and left our little treasure with the grandparents for a few hours, much to their delight. We spent a few hours in a ward and they said the baby was in distress. To this day, I don’t fully understand how a baby can be stressed from lying in a warm sack (human spa) and just eating. Anyway, the doctors wanted to keep my wife in over night, which freaked me out for two reasons:
- I had to mind our daughter alone!!!!
- I was worried about my wife and unborn baby
But, they were in the best possible place, so I went back home to get some fresh clothes for my wife. Just as I pulled into the driveway, the phone rang. It was the doctor and she told me to come back immediately, as they had to do an emergency C-section. My World was crumbling right before me and I was grabbed by fear – fear of losing either one of them or both. It probably wasn’t safe to drive back to the hospital, but I did, and I managed to update our close family at the same time.
I arrived at the hospital 12 minutes later (not bad, considering it is 10 miles) and ran up 3 flights of stairs. There I was greeted by a doctor who briefly explained to me what I had to do and started to dress me in a surgical gown and mask. Without going into too much detail, my wife was given an epidural that basically paralyses her from the lower back down to her feet, so she’s wide awake but can’t feel anything.
I was placed next to my wife’s head. I watched in horror how they operated on her; pulling and moving her lower body to get the baby out. Finally, the nurse said the baby was out and they rushed him to a heating station to give him oxygen. It was very traumatic and scary.
They asked me if I wanted to see my son (of course biatch!), which in hindsight I shouldn’t have agreed to. I stood up, looked over the screen at my wife’s belly and what I saw looked like something out of the “SAW” movie. Blood, stitches, surgical latex gloves and placenta. The blood started to drain from my head and I could see the light fading away. I think the nurse realised what was happening. She raised my son over the screen instead, and there was the most perfect boy ever. My male instincts told me what to do, so I burst into tears of happiness, as you do!
Because he was born almost 6 weeks early, he also had to spend a couple of weeks in the special care unit – which just happened to be on the sixth floor, with no elevator access! Just another reason to give up the smokes.
I stayed with my wife a couple of hours, making sure everything was OK and went to see our son before heading off. It is so scary to see such a small person lying in an incubator and there’s nothing you can do to help him.
MY SON! I made a boy!! Yeeeha. It suddenly hit me again. And, I started to cry again. Crying is what happens when you become a dad – and it stays with you.
I even cried once when watching Nemo! You know, the scene where Dory has been left by Marlin, when he thinks Nemo is dead.
Anyway, I called family and friends to tell them the good news – and they were all happily surprised and amazed that we had gone early, again. Sitting in the sofa, with my daughter in my arms while watching Alien 2 and drinking a beer, made me feel proud and I cried again.
Having another child so quickly has several benefits:
- You can recycle the amount of baby clothes (unless you have bought only pink or light blue and get the opposite sex this time)
- You are still sleep deprived from helping your wife with the nightly feeds
- This is how you successfully re-negotiated SKY movies and sports packages
- You soon realise that your negotiation skills are perfect, because your wife is enthusiastic about your nightly assistance and her full night sleep, so she is easy persuaded
- You are wrecked every morning going to and the movies on TV (or satellite) at 3am are SHITE
- Your nappy changing skills have gradually improved and you can now put the diaper on the baby in less than 14 minutes.
- You know how to assemble baby furniture.
More importantly, we had two babies that soon would call us mum and dad. I cried again!
As last time, we weren’t prepared at all and we had to buy even more baby furniture to prepare his room quickly.
So, when are we going to go for number 3? To be honest, I’d like to take it easy and get some sleep, and don’t think my wife is up to much right after the C-section experience. Only time will tell.