The Road to Rainbow and an Alien
Approximately 4 years ago this month, we received a series of photographs that clearly resembled some form of alien invasion. Fortunately for Kim and all of mankind, that was not the case. As it turns out, I am not a “natural” when it comes to sonogram interpretation. However, I was assured by the resident expert at the doctor’s office that the image was in fact a healthy baby in my wife’s womb and not the creature that erupts from human stomachs that you see in horror films. One of the coping mechanisms that seemed to work for us was during this difficult journey was humor. There was downright gallows humor at some of the lowest points, but everyone copes differently I suppose. When you’ve experienced the ultimate devastation and disappointment a loss of this magnitude carries with it, you’ll resort to any method to maintain sanity. It didn’t help that every appointment with the OB during Logan’s time in utero was a proverbial holding of our breath. The tension in the car was palpable from the moment the ignition started, to when we stepped out of our vehicle and shut the doors. The walk from the parking garage to the front counter for check-in was tense and full of angst. Sitting in the exam room, we would always hold each other’s hand in silence. It was the most bizarre phenomenon. This was our unspoken communication that simply stated, “I love you and everything is going to be ok…. But if it isn’t, we’re in this together.” Thankfully, this pregnancy ended in success despite Logan’s best attempts to remain in Kim’s belly WELL past his curfew. It was what I’d equate to telling a toddler that it’s time to get out of the jungle gym. At some point you just have to go in there and get him out (kicking and screaming sometimes) which is exactly what we had to do. Our son was sunny side up and refused to rotate downward for a natural delivery. After being in labor for a few days and pushing for hours, the OB finally made the call for an emergency cesarean procedure. It was almost poetic that the conclusion of this journey was going to manifest itself in a terrifying and unplanned fashion. Reflecting on the whole ordeal, it was a strange type of time warp phenomenon. It seemed as though from start to finish, the whole thing took forever, but also in some strange way occurred in the blink of an eye. I went from observing the agony my wife was in, making every effort to coach and support her, to suddenly being instructed to don protective clothing in order to accompany her and our unborn son into the O.R. I know that what we were experiencing is relatively common. I will tell you this. I don’t care how common a procedure is. I appreciate hearing that “this is routine and we’re not expecting any complications.” However, when everything you love most is on the line and potentially in jeopardy, none of the obligatory words of comfort offer the slightest amount of relief from the worst fears your imagination is capable of conjuring up!... The surgeon receives us at the door and articulates the details of how this will go. The team gets her prepped and the procedure begins. Holy $#it! It could most aptly be summarized in one word, violent. I was sitting at Kim’s head trying to talk her through what was happening when all of the sudden I witnessed droplets of blood and chunks of “things” hitting the sheet that was draped between her head and torso. The team of professionals were performing in what could be described as a symphony of cesarean. Their efforts synchronized, every movement purposeful, and not an action was wasted. They did their jobs with a palpable sense of urgency. Suffice it to say, there were brief moments in my sleep deprived and anxious mind that the initial “alien theory” I had may have been correct after all! Perhaps that’s why one of the first things I said to Kim when he emerged was so absent minded, idiotic, and in hindsight, kind of comical. Once he was out and crying, I leaned down and lovingly whispered, “Oh my gawd, darling! He’s out! He’s ok. I don’t know what’s up with his head though. I think we have an alien child.” Yeah... Not a statement that will get me into the Word Smith Hall of Fame. When everything was said and done, it was an incredibly humbling experience. I hope more than anything that we are fortunate enough to go through it all over again. Preferably, with less of the speed bumps.