Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Her Story - A Normal Check-up

After a few months in the States with my family, I flew back home with my baby. Back to my husband - oh, how much we had missed him!

The flight was interesting since I was still recovering from that awful flu and was pretty weak. Halfway across the Atlantic, I gave up. I couldn't find any more strength to rock a fussy baby. I was wiped! I put him in his carseat, fastened him in, and lay back in my seat. I knew he was crying, but I also knew that if left alone in a carseat, he would only last about ten minutes before he was out.

Yet, ten minutes of a howling baby is tough on people strapped down in close quarters in a metal tube. Not surprisingly, the flight attendant came by. What she did next surprised us. After taking one look at me and determining that I was exhausted; she fairly sternly, although politely, scolded the young man sitting on the other side of the carseat for not taking care of his baby when his wife is obviously worn out!

The poor guy! He looked up slightly bewildered and said, "umm... the only baby I have is a ten month old German Shepherd at home." (He was really nice about it, actually, considering he was sitting next to a crying baby!)

So the flight attendant asked me what they could do. I told her that I am still weak after being sick for a week, I'm pregnant again, and I am getting dizzy standing up rocking him. Thankfully, my son was never a shy type, so she asked if she could take him. She did, and about an hour later, she brought him back to me laughing. He had been up front to visit in the cockpit and had been playing with the pilots and having a ball. Just six months old, and already in love with anything that moved!

Finally, finally, the plane was home, and I was back in my husband's arms. He laughed at my tummy, now round with another baby, and put me in bed to sleep.

Within a week, I had an appointment with my OB. That morning, I had gotten up and pulled out my maternity clothes again, surprised at how early I needed them. With my son, I hadn't worn maternity clothes until well into the seventh month, but with this one, I was a few days short of five months and already pulling on my waist of my normal clothes.

I put on my favorite of my maternity tops and went out to drive the half hour to the doctor. A happy greeting with all the doctor's assistants as they drooled over my son and assumed I was in for a check up. Exclamations of surprise, and then delight, when I said that we were actually here for round two with the next baby. Wow! The babies will be so close, ten months apart. What fun!

The secrets hidden inside the womb.... unknown by us all.

We stood around the reception desk talking and laughing, and none of us knew. It was the last thoughtless, carefree moment I had in any pregnancy. Within a few minutes, I would hear those three words which changed everything on that rainy morning.

An hour later, I sat in tears alone in the car while my husband got gas, and tried to close my eyes and take myself mentally back to those minutes we stood by the desk with receptionists rubbing my belly and laughing. My hand rested on my belly now, an unconscious gesture, but one which was unable to protect or comfort the tiny baby girl inside. I couldn't even pull up a memory of how my world was a short hour before. Now, there were only tears, and tears I had to keep quiet so I would not frighten the little boy who babbled and laughed in his carseat behind me.

1 comment:

Karis said...

Oh, Ellie, you're such a good writer. I'm right there celebrating and then agonizing with you.