More from Nikhil's archives...
There is so much written about Labor in various books, guides, blogs and websites that women pretty much know what to expect and how to deal with it. But there are 2 things that have always intrigued me about labor.
- In almost everything that happens, Nature has a way of enabling and assisting procreation. Nature is focused on ensuring that every species gets more than a fair chance of expanding and growing. Hell, when that pretty girl in the red dress at the bar looks at you suggestively, it’s basically nature’s way of saying “go get in on and make babies”. It’s not as cool, but that’s what it is. So then how come the actual process of child birth has been made so tough and difficult for the woman? I can understand that it’s tough for us Indians, because its God’s way of controlling a people who procreate like mice!! But what about those Scandinavians or even those Japanese people, whose population is actually shrinking? Surely, God would make the whole process easier for them. But it’s equally tough for them too. Quite intriguing.
- All the published information on Labor has lots of information for the mother, but hardly anything for the father. Hang on ladies, don’t take out your knives…. I know that the woman does all the hard work and this is really about her, but spare a thought for the poor Dad. He is also completely into the moment. But the only advice every book gives him is to try and not be a pain in the ass and act like a moron. Surely at such a time, even a piece of furniture would be “caring, sensitive and supportive”, so asking the Dad to be this way is really telling him that “we have very low expectations of you”!
Anyway, the labor classes do come in very handy and gives one a good idea of what to expect at the actual moment. But my case was different. Due to some complications, Pallavi had to go in for a Caesarian. This is an event of astronomical proportions, for which no one prepares you!
It is supposed to be the most important event in your life, but your wife is in pain, there is chaos all around and everyone in the room thinks that you are in the way. Great! What is worse is that they dress you up in loose, ill fitting clothes, with the Pyjamas sliding off every 2 minutes, a strange cap that resembles a joker from a circus and a sterile white face mask. If you were telling your self “Don’t act like Moron, please don’t”, then one look at the mirror will make you feel exactly that.
So there was my wife lying on the Operation theatre, quite expectedly nervous, as I entered the room. As I tentatively walked towards my wife, trying my best not to look at anything except her face, the doctor announced “Don’t worry Pallavi, now your husband is here too”. I thought to myself “Thanks for the vote of confidence Doc, but right now, I am about 2 seconds away from deliriously running out of this room!!”
To make matters worse, the Doctor announced that 7 out 10 men actually faint in the labor room at the site of the blood and gore.
“Thanks, Doc, this is just the information I needed at this point in time”
Luckily my wife was given local anesthesia so she was awake through out the surgery, which was quite re-assuring for both of us.
At precisely 2 minutes before the big moment, the Doctor announced “2 mins to go Mr. Nikhil, so please keep your camera ready”
Me –“Camera? What Camera? This is an OT Doc…. they frisked me from top to bottom and did not let me get anything inside”
Doctor – “That’s unusual. Usually they let cameras inside”
Wife – Pissed off. “I can’t believe that this one time when you needed to get your camera, you go and forget. It’s so typical of you”
Me – Protesting "But what could I…”
Doctor –“Don’t worry, you can use my phone to click snaps”
Pallavi – “He always does this Doctor”
Doctor – “Ok. Let it be…hey…the countdown begins”
Me – “Doctor, your phone is Samsung. I have a Nokia. Don’t know how to use the camera on this one”
Doctor – “1…2…”
Me –“If you could just help me here for a second…”
Wife – “And leave me on the OT? What’s wrong with you”
Doctor – “...3”
Me – “No…I did not mean…”
Doctor – “It’s a GIRL!!!”
Oh My God!