Tiffany woke me up at 3:40ish in the morning to tell me her water broke. I mean it when I say she looked angelic. She seemed relieved to finally be able to go to the hospital and was glowing. I got dressed and woke the kids. All their gear for an overnighter was in the van and ready to go. I gathered Tiffany’s bag and made sure we had the camera and left for the hospital. I was a little concerned about getting to the hospital in a hurry and it being the middle of the night I was driving about 10 miles over the speed limit to get the kids to my sister’s home. (Thanks Christie and Keith) Tiffany was polity requesting that I go a little faster if I could. We dropped the kids off and gave all their gear to Keith and we were on our way. Tiffany, while breathing heavy, tries to be polite and thanks Keith for his help.
A few seconds after we get out of the neighborhood Tiffany starts to breathe a bit heavier and starts into a little moan which into a matter of seconds turns into a scream. I get wide eyed and start driving faster. Within a few more seconds Tiffany’s scream turns into an all out SCAH-REEEAM. As a result I start driving a little faster. I’ve explained this to many family members and get a similar response that they can’t picture Tiffany SCAH-REEEAMING. All I can say is that this moment was not very Tiffanyesque. I was trying to be comforting, as much I could while driving like there was no one else on the road while my wife is SCAH-REEEAMING. We get about half way to the hospital and Tiffany’s SCAH-REEEEAMING intensifies even more as she lifts her feet onto the dashboard of our minivan. I immediately begin to experience more thoughts and random emotions then ever before. I begin to panic as I realize that this child has a very good chance of being born in the van. I forget where the hospital is. I began to wonder how to clean the van. How quickly could I sell then van? Could I sell the van without telling the buyer why I’m selling it and still keep my temple recommend? Tiffany bought a book on how to deliver a child. I purposely avoided it and then wish we had it in the car because I don’t remember if the First Aid merit badge covered this. I ask Tiffany to tell me when I can ask her a question. She gives me permission but tells me to make it quick and I have to ask her “the hospital is on 9000 S. right?” as I pass the on ramp to I-15. She confirms that it is and starts into another SCAH-REEEEAM. By missing the on ramp to I-15 I drive us into an area that is under heavy construction. Cones are everywhere as I bobbed and weaved our way down the street. It felt like we were in a luge and I don’t think we had all four wheels on the ground until we reached the hospital. Tiffany asked me later what happened to make us turn so often. She remembers experiencing a little motion sickness in route to the hospital. I blamed her sickness on the lack of oxygen she was getting due to her constant SCAH-CREEEMING. Needless to say I broke a few laws in route to the hospital and remember a few words I learned in Jr. High. I purposely keep this part vague in case someone with the law enforcement or my Bishop read any of this.
We make it to the hospital and I drive up to the entrance of the Women’s Center and Tiffany tells me that she can’t walk that I should take her to emergency room entrance. Again driving quite fast I take her to the emergency entrance and realize that I shouldn’t be taking turns as quickly as I am. I stopped trying to slow down for the speed bumps and just plowed right over them. It was 4:00 as we drove into the ambulance entrance; I jumped out, and ran into the ER lobby. No one is there. I have not seen many horror movies but this reminded me of one. Most of the lights are off, one light coming from vending machine is flickering off and on and nobody is there. I begin yelling for help and a woman comes to the counter. Her speed did not match the intensity of my pleads for help. She looked at me like she normally gets weird people in the ER at the middle of the night. I tell her, “MY WIFE IS HAVING A BABY RIGHT NOW!!!!” She calmly tells me to park in the ambulance drop off. I tell her I’m already there. I run back to the car and look inside the sliding doors they will take my wife and nobody is coming. I’m frustrated and start to go back into the ER when I see someone calmly walking a stretcher towards the door. I open the van door and Tiffany SCAH-REEEEAMS, “WHAT IS THAT SMELL.” It smelled like burnt rubber but I couldn’t believe that she would care. I just stared at her for about 5 seconds and then tell her the smell is coming from the van. She then SCAH-REEEMS, “IS THE VAN GOING TO BE OK?” Again, I just stare at her as the mighty women of the ER help her onto the stretcher. I get back into the van and park. I grab Tiffany’s bags and such and run to the ER entrance hoping I could follow Tiffany. I slow down as I approach the entrance noticing that one of Tiffany’s shoes in lying alone on the asphalt. I was a bit puzzled, I’m not sure why. It was kind of a lonely moment. Everything is quite for the first time since we got in the van, I’m by myself and I’m staring at a lone shoe on the asphalt outside the ER doors. I pick up the shoe as the sliding doors are closing. I stand at the door expecting someone to see me and let me in but nobody was thinking of the father. I go back into the ER lobby and try to get someone’s attention. A few people are there but they all look really busy. I get a lady’s attention and ask her where maternity is. She points as if to give me directions and then realized I must be the father and lets me take a short cut through ER. I get to the maturity door and ring the buzzer a couple of times. I can’t even get into this part of the hospital without someone letting me in. It takes about 2 minutes but someone comes to the door and lets me in and says “you must be ‘The Father’ like I was no ordinary father. He tells where Tiffany’s room is and gives me directions. I didn’t bother to listen to them because I could her Tiffany who was still SCAH-REEEMING. I got to her room and reasoned that she must have made a racket all the way to her room because she had 11 nurses all in there. (I counted)
On a side note, the day after Mari was born Tiffany went to a lactation class to freshen up on her mad lactation skills. They all were sharing there labor “stories”. On gal said that she having a hard time deciding if she wanted the epidural or not. While debating this decision in her own mind she heard a women making like a banshee being run down the hall on a stretcher which made her decision a little easier.
I was guessing that the hospital wasn’t very busy because of all the attention we were getting. I found later that they were busier then usual but with Tiffany’s SCAH-REEEMING they all dropped what they were doing and came running to help. Tiffany had 3-4 nurses in her face telling her what to do as I entered the room. They tell me to drop everything in the far corner and get out of the way. I do as I’m told and look down at Tiffany who is begging for some drugs and the nurses in unison say “Sorry, It’s too late”. I was not sure what all the nurses where doing. Some where helping Tiffany with her breathing, some were preparing the bed, some were trying to get an IV in place, and others were waiting for instructions. I know it sounds dumb but I was thinking, “at least they could get some water boiling and bring some fresh towels.” One nurse was working the computer on the other side of the room and was trying to ask me questions. She asked me, “What is her name”? I responded, “Tiffany.” The nursed followed that up with “spell it for me”. I gave her “T . . . I. . . “ and then my mind went blank. She asked the question again and eventually gave me multiple choice options of which I chose one. A few seconds later she came over and asked me for Tiffany’s birth date and all I could do was stare at her, which I did for about 15 seconds, before I could remember. The nurse who was helping Tiffany with her breathing tried to ask me my name which I knew if I told her I would begin to cry so I just smiled at her. They kept telling Tiffany that the doctor was on his way and that the baby was crowning. She asked me if I wanted to see the baby crowning and all I could do was laugh at her. I’ve been through this before and I know my role. I take care of one end and they take care of the other. I politely declined and was able to pay attention to Tiffany a bit. She was not longer screaming due to the nurse telling her to use her air to push. 2 nurses left and we were down to having 9 in the room. They reassured Tiffany that the doctor is coming but if they need to they can deliver the baby. Tiffany told them that she trusts them and she pushes. Mary was born at 4:30. The clock in the room said 4:31 but they entered 4:29. I’ll split the difference. Literally 2 seconds after Mary is born the doctor walks in the door. I yell across the room, “Doctor, your timing is impeccable!” and smile. I’ve never meet him before and he seemed to not know how to take this statement. He kind of glared, smiled, and glared. He’s a great guy and we chatted a bit while he worked on Tiffany.
After Mary was born Tiffany looked great. She looked at me and said, “I feel so much better!!” It was said the same way as a child might say after being up all night with a tummy ache and finally vomiting up a bunch of those nasty peeps that are available around Easter. “I feel so much better.” She said like, “I feel so much better, when can I start training for that marathon?” The nurses were able to hook Tiffany up to some pain meds and all was well.
Christie brought the kids buy that morning with some breakfast. I was starving after the emotional rollercoaster that last less then an hour and wore myself out as I remembered every second over and over. After a brief visit with Mom, I took the kids home hoping to sleep and have some “quite time”. We went back to the hospital that late afternoon to visit with Tiffany some more. This time I took I-15 and still hit some construction that slowed us down considerably. While on I-15 I realized that I was driving a little to fast, my knuckles were white, and I was uneasy for some reason. I was trying to figure out why I felt this way when I heard Tiffany SCAH-CREEEEMING and looked over to where she was sitting on the way to the hospital. I was suffering from some crazy version of post traumatic stress. I don’t know what it was but all the feelings I had earlier came back at once. I didn’t sleep much during our “quite time” which might have had something to do with it. I began to think of how blessed we were that morning. What if the baby came while I was at work? What if she came during the day and we had traffic to worry about? What if I had rolled the van, was in an accident, or the van broke down? Even now, while typing this all I can do is shake my head and think of how lucky I am to have a wife who is deserving of these blessings. I’m sure I neutralized any blessing I might have been due by my actions in route to the hospital.