06 May 2009

A Boy

Walking past closed doors, I knew each room held its own pivotal event, and I felt like a voyeur. I had heard report at 7am: sorrow and joy about to happen behind every room, most likely on our shift. And then sitting at the foot of of the bed in 19, I was in the core, the axis around which every other event would unfold. The third child, the first son, was born with his hair pressed slick with vernix into a beam of light and the smiling sobs of his father. Everything outside our circle vanished. There were no walls, no rooms with sick babies, new babies, and mothers in pain. There was no hospital, no city, no time. We could have been anywhere, anyone.

This birth was the first I have attended in five years. I was anxious for months leading up to Tuesday. Amidst moving, selling our home, planning for the new house, my return to deliveries was never far from my thoughts. They say it's like riding a bike, and it is, in a way. Obstetric fads come and go, one research trumps another, and we go from VBAC to cesarean, obsessive fetal monitoring to broad strokes, cervidil to cytotec. But the central pieces of watching a woman's perineum bulge, checking for a cord, celebrating the child, waiting for the placenta- these hold true.

1 comment:

melissa s. said...

this makes me happy for you. love, melissa