Just as five pregnancies brought with it different emotions, going through five deliveries brought with it different memories and emotions too. Below is the story of the birth of my second child…
I was a grad student near Boston living in student housing with my family. The great thing about our building is that it was filled with people who had the same faith and goals in life. For the most part we were all training to be in ministry. Some of our friends had other plans but we still had the same values and similar life goals. Because most of us became friends what we would do is go out on dates and drop off our baby monitors with them. It was cool and convenient.
Well, when #2 decided to come out it was really really late. I went to our friends, the Hillmans, and dropped off our baby monitor and keys. My wife and I went to the hospital. A few things made this delivery interesting. First, it was so awesome that this group of nurses did not judge me for not wanting to be there after 10 cm. They respected our decision as a couple and I really loved that. There was something though that made me the most uncomfortable I have been ever in my life. That night the only OBGYN on call was a dude. A DUDE!
I know some of you progressive folks are thinking, “Get over it man. He is just doing his job. He is a professional. Yada, yada, yada…”
I have one thing to say to my readers thinking that…”Shut up! I don’t care!”
I don’t care what anyone says. Having my wife checked by a dude in the place that he does what he does was not cool with me. The worst part is I am sitting there while it is happening. My wife is equally uncomfortable but at the end of the day this guy is gonna bring our second child into the world. So we both take one for the team and go on. Luckily he is only on call for another 15 minutes and a female doctor comes. Whew.
My wife gives birth (again no epidural) and we hold our second child. I don’t cut the umbilical cord this time either. I don’t get why that’s such a big deal.
Very early the next morning I go back to the apartment and get #1 ready to meet her baby sister. Remember #1 just turned 1. I get her dressed and while I pack the diaper bag #1 yells, “Dada! Dada!”
I don’t look and just say, “Ok. Ok. Daddy will be with you in a minute.”
#1 yells again, “Dada! Dada!”
This time I turn around and I watch my baby girl take her first steps. Great timing. I start screaming and she gets scared. I get into the minivan and off we go. She sees her baby sister and from day 1 she has that older sister love and gentleness. This is a huge relief because every parent worries that new siblings will cause jealousy. Then I tell my wife what I saw right before coming. I put #1 down and she shows mommy and #2 she can walk now.
What a great day!