The Birth Story
Birth Day Part 3
The Birth Evening
“Don’t you want to go get dinner?” Katrina asks me.
“I’m not really that hungry.”
“I think you should go get dinner and bring it back up here to eat.”
Katrina is starving, and is not being offered anything of substance from the nursing staff. She wants to eat off my plate without my being able to complain for the last time.
I get a surprisingly good plate of pasta from the hospital cafeteria, and Katrina is ripping through it.
“Just give me one more bite,” she says for the eighth time.
Katrina is doing her math, and she doesn’t like her answers. Progress is slow to nonexistent, and Katrina does not want to start the Pitocin drip at midnight, deliver early in the morning, and be wiped out tomorrow. If she’s going to need the drip eventually, she might as well get it now. The nurse/practitioner, who lives across the street from the hospital, is called.
I head out for another refill of water. This time I notice that there is a touch strip on the machine. When your cup touches the strip, water comes out. Suddenly, every trip to the water dispenser replays in my mind. From the beginning, I had been pushing the spout housing, which has nothing to do with the dispensing of water. The two nurses who I stood between must have thought I was an idiot.
The Nurse Practitioner gives phone approval for the drip. The nurse repeatedly unsuccessfully jabs Katrina, trying to get the needle into a vein, but she cannot do it. She moves to Katrina’s other hand, and finally gets it in. We start walking the halls again, wheeling the drip along with us and trying not to get tangled up.
Back in the room, Katrina asks the nurse if I can have a better chair from one of the other rooms. The nurse hauls in an overstuffed recliner from the room across the hall, and I am in heaven. I fully recline it for only a second, afraid that in five seconds, I could be sound asleep.
A new shift of nurses has come on, and a new, more sympathetic nurse gives Katrina a peanut butter and jelly sandwich.
Every once in a while now, Katrina gets what she calls a “good” contraction. I am still timing them, and there is still no pattern.
I am still useless.
Next: Finally, the Birth