Almost five years ago, as my due date came, passed and gave me the middle finger, I waited and seethed and glared at this unwavering bump in my lap.
Yeah, yeah, yeah, I was supposed to be centered and peaceful, enjoying these last hours of freedom before the baby bomb. But it was hard to be calm as om when I was hobbling to the toilet every 45 seconds, burping up dinner from days past in a sour fog, and woefully over-tired from the aforementioned sleep-interrupting bathroom breaks.
After ten months and 9 days, I was ready. Sure, I’d skimmed most of the “important” baby books and nearly fell asleep in the Baby CPR Class but I was still ready.
Ready and waiting for the tell-tale “as seen on TV” sign that baby has it’s bags packed and jaunty hat on just so, and is ready to explode out of your vagina – the water break.
My water broke as we sat late Sunday night watching an episode of Dexter (a clear sign of the gore to come). I stood slowly as warmth flooded down my thighs and excitedly locked eyes with my husband, “It’s HAPPENING.”
Being the practical woman that I am, I went and stood in the bathtub to curb the mess, while bags and pillows were gathered to go to the hospital. I then graduated to the toilet, kicked off my wet maternity jeans (with an extra good riddance punt) and let the remaining fluid collect in the toilet bowl.
Minutes later as we hopped into the back of a cab, I realized the wet in my crotch was still drooling out and pooling right into the open pores of the cushioned cab seat. The contractions hadn’t started so I had nothing to distract my brain from thinking, “This is SUCH a dick move.”
This cab was now sullied and sweet with my baby’s pre-entrance essence.
When we got to the hospital, I scurried out of the cab as quickly as I could and immediately sat in one of those ancient hospital wheelchairs.
Did I need it? No.
Did I like being pushed like a lazy and fancy VIP? Very much so.
Did my water continue to break all over the seat of that wheelchair? Oh, yes.
Over the next few hours I spread my juices all over that hospital. All totaled, I sprayed spurts of my sweet nectar:
- Through my underwear and pants
- On the examining bed
- In and on the examining room toilet
- All over the hands and wrists of three student nurses
The last gasps of my insides settled onto the seat of the cab that eventually took us home, where I was asked to stay until I was in the deeper throes of labour. Or maybe the hospital just ran out of clean towels. I’m a bit fuzzy on that.
Once back inside, after I peeled my sopping bottoms off, I was surprised I could even blink or swallow. How was there any fluid at all left in my body? I was sure the baby was now sitting in a barren desert of a womb, surrounded by mirages and dust.
Not a single word in any of the books I’d flipped through and spilled a snack on, had mentioned water breaking and then continuing to break until the end of time.
But then there’s the thing. There is so much you will never read or discover about having a baby or becoming a parent until it actually is happening to you, and you’re avoiding eye contact with the taxi driver in the rear view mirror. All you can do when it comes to your pregnancy surprise is just roll with it, take deep breaths and pay cash so they can never track you down for the deep cleaning bill.