Five great questions of life: Life * Love * Learning * Labor * Leadership
Midnight Ride to the Hospital - Preparing for ChildbirthBy Evan Nehring
I was getting ready in my music pastor office in Racine, WI for the morning church service to begin. The Worship Choir was gathering in the back hallway and getting their robes on…when in walked my bride with a smile on her face and her hands behind her back.
She pulled out a little colored stick and put it in front of my face. I don't remember whether I interpreted the stick color or Colleen’s face, but I knew our lives had just changed.
This was part of the reason we left family in central Wisconsin: so I could work a job that would allow Colleen to be home. But plan or no plan, that moment is an amazing moment, shocking and wonderful.
Colleen’s belly began to grow as she carted our growing bundle around. I went to every prenatal visit with her. I had a metronome app on my PDA. When the nurse would find the baby’s heart rate, I would match it with the metronome to know the beats-per-minute.
We did Lamaze classes together 20 minutes south in Kenosha at the hospital where the delivery would later take place. We answered questions about the birth plan, cord blood, circumcision, anesthesia…things like that. They asked if we wanted to test for Down’s syndrome. We didn't, knowing that we would never end the child’s life.
And then the night came to take the freeway ride for real. We scheduled an induction for 9 pm the day before I was to direct the Christmas production dress rehearsal. We got a call at 8 saying they didn't have room for us. The alternative we chose was to come in at midnight.
Tuesday, December 3, 2002, we piled into the cloth seats of our green 1998 Ford Windstar minivan and made the chilly, nighttime road trip down the interstate to Kenosha. We waited in a triage room and watched Little House on the Prairie while they found us some space. Col was weary…and ready!
When they got us settled into the delivery room, I found a comfy chair near the bed where I could lean back for the night. Sounds thoughtful, right? Actually, my snoring made it pretty tough for Colleen to sleep. That and the Pitocin drip which gradually began to induce contractions.
I told Dr. Park I had dress rehearsal at 6:30, but that I would not miss the birth of my son. I would stay after the delivery for a couple of hours no matter what. It happened just like that.
The delivery team needed a bit of suction on the baby’s head to help him out. I can still hear Jason’s quivering cry and the doctor’s first words: “There’s nothing small about that baby!”
The day was miraculous.
|Baby Jason, Ready to Go Home|