What Kind of Mood Are You In Today?

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

My Son Was Born in an Ambulance (Cont.)

If you haven't done so already, read "My Son Was Born in an Ambulance" (part 1) now.

So, as I said, I'm arranging towels in the backseat when I hear the dispatcher say to Josh,

"Josh, you need to undress her from the waist down."

Now, I've heard women say that when it comes to labor, you lose all sense of modesty. You simply don't care who sees what. All the women I knew who have had children told me this was true.

Not I!

I had not lost my sense of modesty! I knew I was going to have to bare it all to someone, but it was NOT going to be Josh! Oh, no. This was my third child, I knew what having a baby was like, and I knew how to do it myself. I would leave my modesty intact, thank you very much!

Josh's eyes were dilated to like...10cm and his face was pale. I think he was blushing at the same time. (I don't know how that's possible, either.) I looked him straight in the eye and said the words he was very glad to hear,


There was silence.

I heard the voice again, "Josh, you need to undress her from the waist down."

Josh told her he wasn't my husband and I wouldn't do it.

"Josh, you need to undress her from the waist down."

"Josh, you need to undress her from the waist down."

"Josh, you need to undress her from the waist down."

Over and over and over again!

I kept arranging towels and Josh was pacing, trying to explain to the dispatcher that I wasn't letting him to do this and can they please just send an ambulance. Later he told us that he just kept thinking, "This better be like a pig or a cow...This better be like a pig or a cow..."

Farm boy, obviously.

An employee of the used car lot we were parked in front of came out and said to Josh, "Is she ok?"

"Ummm...she's having a baby."

I don't think the words set in because it wasn't until the second time that the light bulb seemed to go on for her and her eyes also suddenly dilated to 10!

"I have a couch," she said.

Hmmm. Couch? Back seat. Couch? Back seat.

Back seats might be where many babies have been conceived, but I figured a couch would be a better place to actually give birth to one. I grabbed the towels and headed in. I knew I only had a few moments before the next contraction, so I laid on the couch and started telling everyone what to do.

"YOU!" I said to the car lot lady. "TAKE OFF MY SHOES!"

"YOU!" I said to SuperJosh. "Call Travis!" He was all too glad to do this as soon as the Nazi dispatcher would let him go. (I hope you all know I realize she was doing her job and doing it well!)

The car lot lady got one shoe off and then the ambulance arrived. In came the paramedics who started asking questions. I'm in the middle of a contraction and somehow get out, "I'm having a baby."

"Oh, Honey," said the She-Paramedic, "You're not having this baby yet."

If life were like a sitcom (and you might be able to argue that mine is!), everything would have gone silent and it would have looked like time stood still while I gave this lady a hard stare.

Seeing how it was that I was in reality, I managed to get out, "I have the urge to push."

"Honey, I've had 3 kids. I know about this."

"This is my third one. He's coming. I need my shoes off."

I'm waiting for them to...well, like the dispatcher said, undress me from the waist down. Rather, they nonchalantly got me onto a bed and started to wheel me into the ambulance. I start undressing MYSELF from the waist down and the She-Paramedic says, "

"What are you doing?"

I didn't have the energy to argue.

I'm feeling rather annoyed at this point, but I figured that if they didn't know what they were doing, in the end I did and I would just handle it if need be.

They started to lift the bed into the truck when all of the sudden I heard a male voice...


The She-Paramedic laughed and said, "That's why *I* don't stand there! Hahaha!"

My water broke...all over the poor guy who, incidentally, also had never had any children. In fact, the She-Paramedic was the only one of the 3 who had.

Right now I think the Wet-Paramedic wished he could jump in the car with Josh...to help navigate, of course.

Instead, he finished putting the bed in the truck and got in. Now, I've got the She-Paramedic on my left who is completely relaxed and perhaps even laughing at me a bit and a grossed-out He-Paramedic on my right who is now wishing he had not gotten out of bed that morning. Then there was the driver who turns his head and asks,

"Should I turn the lights on?"

Ok. Let's recap. I am a mother who is giving birth to her 3rd child. I have explained to them that I have fast labors, that I feel the urge to push, and my water has just broke. The obvious answer would be...

"No, I don't think we need to. She's got time."

Sitcom moment-all silent, time standing still, I'm giving the hard stare. Well, that's how it would happen in a sitcom, anyway.

I still don't have the mental energy to argue and again, I figure that if they don't know how to handle it, I did.

We travel further down the road, stopping at stoplights, driving the speed limit, when I start pushing. I've now been still long enough that my body figures it better get back to what it was doing when SuperJosh called 911. She-Paramedic looks over and gets concerned. He-Paramedic freezes. Then they debate again over whether they should turn on the lights. They compromised with going the speed limit, but turning on the lights to go through stoplights. I'm beating my head against the wall in my mind.

I think they are taking the situation a little more seriously because it's a little more tense in the back of the truck. It was very quiet, except for me because it was time to push again.

Wet Paramedic looks down and suddenly bursts out with a, "I SEE A HEAD!" She-Paramedic looks, too and then tells the driver to get the lights on!

Lights go on, truck pulls in front of the hospital, I'm pushing, She-Paramedic and Wet Paramedic jump out and prepare for what Mr. Wet Paramedic was hoping would not happen...to deliver my baby. There's really no preparing, though because as soon as they got the doors open, I gave one more push and they were holding the head of my son. Another few short moments later and they were holding my entire baby in their gloved hands. According to Josh, there was a nice round of applause from bystanders in the parking lot.

Only 12 minutes has gone by since SuperJosh called 911.

I am feeling...I don't know what I was feeling. I was too tense to feel relieved, but it was nice knowing I was done with the hard part. I'm still feeling like I may need to take the lead at any moment, and so I demand them to give me my baby so I can breastfeed. Plus, this is MY baby. I want to hold MY baby!!!

"OH MY ***" said Mr. Wet Paramedic.

She-Paramedic and the doctor that had just ran out gave him a stern, "SHHHHHHHHH!!!"

The umbilical cord was wrapped around my son's neck. How bad it was, I don't know. Mr. Wet Paramedic had never had kids, so I'm guessing the site of a newborn-with all that white stuff that makes them look dead-with a cord wrapped around a baby's neck was more than a little frightening for him.

I was wheeled inside and Josh, who had been trying to explain to deaf ears for 12 minutes now that he was NOT the father, now approached me, as I was now covered once again from the waist down.

After what seemed like hours to me...possibly days to Josh, my husband finally arrived at the hospital. Josh was now able to return home to his beautiful wife...

...except that he left his wallet on top of his car when he left to follow the ambulance and in it was our insurance card.

Poor Josh. Poor SuperJosh. Poor, poor DoulaJosh. And thank you, thank you, THANK YOU, We-owe-you-one-Josh. :) Love you guys!


  1. Oh. my. goodness. Are you sure your life isn't actually a sitcom?

  2. If so, I'm like Bolt and I don't know it!