Thursday, September 16, 2010

Penny's Arrival, Pt. 2: What Happened That Night

I know. It's been a while since I updated. Sorry.

Here's a picture of Penny's first bath to make up for it.

I'm not the most perceptive of people. Which is to say, I'm self-absorbed.

On our way from L.A. to San Diego on Friday afternoon (8/27), Kathy began complaining that she was feeling "weird."

Now, we all know my wife doesn't take medicine (see part 1), and, similarly, she doesn't let on quickly when she's feeling sick or uncomfortable. She'll tell me she's not feeling well, but sometimes I have to pry it out of her. So, when she said she felt "weird," I probably should have been a bit more perceptive. Alert. Aware of someone other than myself. I wasn't.

To be fair (to myself), Kathy was 8 months pregnant. I imagine being 8 months pregnant makes one feel "weird" a lot. So, an argument could be made that my lack of response to Kathy's complaint was quite reasonable.

Then again, that argument could probably be blown out of the water simply by pointing out that Kathy gave birth 24 hours later.

When we arrived in San Diego, Kathy was still feeling "weird." She kept rubbing her stomach, and guessing that she was having Braxton Hicks contractions (which are sort of like warm-up contractions that happen throughout the third trimester). That night, we went to dinner with my whole extended family. Later, my grandfather (hi Grandpa!) claimed he noticed Kathy looking glassy-eyed and trying to make like she was feeling fine. Apparently, I didn't inherit his perceptive gene.

Later at the hotel, after we had put Jonas to bed, Kathy started saying things like, "I don't know..." and "I can't be going into labor...." Though she was still trying to convince herself that Penny (my beautifully impatient baby girl) wasn't coming, I finally came to my senses. Of course she's in labor, I thought. I responded to this realization in two ways:
  1. I looked up the directions to the nearest hospital and memorized the route from hotel to emergency room.
  2. I went to sleep.
My first response should need no explanation. My second response was one of calculated survival. Labor can be a long, tiring process, and if the 26 hours it took Jonas to be born was any indication, that night at the hotel could potentially be my last chance to sleep in a day or two. So, I rolled over and attempted to sleep through the Lucinda Williams concert going on outside my hotel window.

Good thing I did. Kathy woke me up at 4:45 the next morning.

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