In the dead of night, as quiet as it gets, Leelee shakes Alex who is sound asleep. Alex. Alex. Wake up. Huh! What? What is it? You have to take me to the hospital. What’s wrong? he wants to know. She screams; we’re having a baby! Oh! OH, he exclaims. Jumping up and turning on the light. Are you sure? he asks. With pain driving her responses she quips, of course I’m sure. My pains are getting constant.
Still in half asleep mode he gets dressed. Do you want to get dressed? he asks Leelee. She’s not holding back now. Screams, NO. I DON’T WANT TO GET DRESSED. Well what do I do? he begs. Get the bag I prepared for the hospital. I need a wet face cloth. He runs to the bathroom and returns with a facecloth and towel. Do you want me to wipe your face? NO. JUST GIVE IT TO ME. He realizes his wife is not her normal self.
As she quickly gives her face a once over with the wet cloth, she orders him to call the hospital, and let them know they are on their way there. Help me to the car, Alex. They cautiously make it down the stairs and to the car. With Leelee laying in the backseat he slides behind the wheel. He is so flustered he nearly backs out of the garage without opening the garage door. He hits the brake so hard Leelee almost landed on the floor. She yells, don’t be stupid, Alex. Sorry! I’m sorry, Honey. Just get us there before you kills us, she bellows. He wanted to say something back to her, but, thought better of it.
Alex’s hands were shaking as he drove fast, cautiously. Her moans are scarring him a little. What if they don’t make it? he wonders. Could he deliver the baby before help came? Oh God, he thought, we have to make it. Between agonizing rants, Leelee is saying some very mean things to Alex. He had no insight and nobody warned him that this is how it might be. His first inclinations were to correct her. To give her a piece of his mind. Wisely, he resisted the temptation.
He whipped into the drive of the ER. Stopping the car again too fast for Leelee’s liking. With her giving him the business he jumps out of the car. Before he could get her door opened two people emerged with a wheel chair. Are you having a baby? they asked. Yes he replied, in a state of panic. They get Leelee out of the car and into the chair. They whisk her into the building. Alex is running behind, wanting to follow them, when the receptionist stops him. Excuse me, she said, you have to park your car. When he comes backs she stops him a second time. I have some paperwork for you to fill out. Can’t we do that later? he snaps. Sir, we need to get your wife checked in and your information filled out. Reluctantly, he complies.
Taking the clipboard and what seemed like a mountain of paperwork he finds a seat to complete the task. While he is feverishly filling in all the paperwork a doctor came to give him an update. The doctor said it would be a while yet. But, you did the right thing by coming in when you did. He encouraged Alex to finish what he was doing and then he could be with his wife. He didn’t care if they could read his writing or not. He completed the paperwork and handed the clipboard to the receptionist. Here, he said, and turned to walk away. Just a minute she said. What now? he asked with a scowl.
This is an experienced front end person he’s dealing with. She’s been down this road many times. Looking him in the eye, she questions him. Is this your first child? Yes, it is. And I want to be with my wife not here with you. Uh-uh. I hear you. I just need your driver’s license and insurance card. Alex takes his wallet out so fast he popped the button off his pocket. Seeing how perturbed he is, the lady said, Mr. Handman, let me help you relax a bit. You don’t want to miss the birth of your child by being to stressed out. Let’s just finish up here and you can go be by your wife’s side. I’ll make a copy of these things and you can be on your way.
Taking a deep breath, Alex calmed down. He thought, she’s right. She hands the things back to Alex. Gave him a nice smile. He said, thank you, and spun around to leave. The lady said, hey, do you know what your having? He paused before he answered. We decided to wait and see, offering a smile. Do you want a boy or a girl? she asked. He paused again. I want a healthy baby. That’s what I want. Well, good luck to you and your wife. Thanks again, he said, and walked away.
Just then the ER door opens and several people came charging in asking for help. It dawned on Alex that he had been the only one in the ER until then. Hurrying along Alex is compelled to move away from the drama. He pulls out his phone and calls the parents. They are all on their way. He reaches the nurses station and inquires about which room his wife is in. They point him to a curtain. Just as he was about to enter the curtain opens from the inside. They are taking Leelee to a delivery room. Their eyes met. She reaches for his hand. He walks along her rolling bed. They squeeze each others hands. Are you okay, Leelee? I’m fine, she replies.
He has to let go of her hand so they can get her through the door. They transfer her to the delivery bed. Her pain appears more intense. Two nurses and a doctor are busy doing what they need to do. He can’t take his eyes off of Leelee. He has her hand again. Leaning down he whispers in her ear, I love you. She tells him the same. They both have eyes filled with tears. A deep resolve came over Alex. Peace settled where turmoil had been. Alex sensed a presence he couldn’t explain. He didn’t say anything. He just stood there beside his beautiful bride. Leelee broke the momentary silence; we’re not alone Alex. God is here with us.
The room is filled with unseen reality.
Marty will return next Friday!