My parents are gone for at least the day. My Pseudo-Aunt's sister-in-law, Rachelle, is in labor. In earlier times, French queens used to have to give birth in front of entire audiences to certify the succession. You'd think this kid is 16th Century French royalty in the making from the number of people attending the birth, Other than the mother-to-be and whatever non MD personnel the hospital happens to provide, everyone in there will be an MD either from the family or from the extendd family or, like my dad, almost part of the family. My dad is the baby's father's Godfather; that's the rationale for his invitation to the big event.
You know the saying that too many cooks spoil the broth? I'm concerned that too many doctors could get in the way of delivering this baby. I'll give you the head count to the best of my knowledge. There could be others who have received last-minute invitations since I was most recently updated. Here it goes: 1. Vincent, the baby's father, who probably should be there; some would say he wasn't holding up his end of the bargain were he not present, since he had no issues with being present for the conception; 2. the baby's father's father; OK, I'd find this one just a tad awkward, but if Rachelle is good with it, it's fine with me; he is, after all, an OBGYN, and who knows when a second opinion will be required. 3. the baby's dad's brother, Gerard; whatever floats Rachelle's boat, I'd say; this is jumping way ahead on things, but were I to marry my current friend who is a boy (I'm not allowed to have a boyfriend yet), he can forget about dragging his little brother Bryson into the delivery room for my big event even if Bryson (currently a 2-year-old who still sleeps in Pull-Ups, so it's difficult to fathom at this time) is a world-renowned OBGYN specializing in whatever form of high-risk pregnancy I happen to have; you're staying the hell out of my birthing room, Bryson! Get it through your thick skull now so you're accustomed to the idea if and when the time ever comes; 4. the baby's dad's younger brother Timothy, who is a freaking medical school student; he's barely qualified to insert an IV, but maybe it would be considered discrimination to keep him out; 5. Scott, my Pseudo-Uncle, the baby's father's brother-in-law; he's at least an MD; his current count is seventeen births at which he has been present; for some reason unknown he obviously wants to pad his numbers; professionally it's not doing him that much good, as he's an internist with pulmonology emphasis- in-training; 6. John, my dad, the baby's father's godfather; he's an MD and primarily a research physician; OB isn't a particular specialty of his, though, in his mind, no sub-specialty of medicine is beyond his scope of specialization; (he says he likes to assist in the birth of a baby at least once every year around Christmas to remind him of the miracle of Jesus' birth; I say he knows the beer will be flowing freely once this baby is out, and my dad has never been known to walk away from a good party; 7. Kent, Scott's brother, is an MD with a specialization in, I think, general surgery; let's see, if his closest link is that he's Scott's brother, that makes him the baby's dad's sister's husband's brother; pretty close connection, huh? (by the way Dr. Kent, father of Jared, boy who is my friend: what I said about Bryson applies to you as well, times two; 8. Brett, Scott's brother, same relation to baby's father and baby as Kent, same right to be there, which would be just about zero in my book; 9. Cousin Peter, a neuro-ophthalmologist, baby's father's cousin; at least he's a blood relative, however remote, and he has bona fide privileges at the hospital where the blessed event is currently taking place; besides, you never know when a neonate will be in need of a board-certified neuro-ophthalmologist and oculoplastic surgeon ( I certainly hope not anytime soon); 10; Dr. Quo, the OBGYN of record.
Notably absent from the birthing room is the baby's paternal grandmother, a pediatric registered nurse practicioner. She elected not to be present because watching someone else close to her suffer would bother her too much. She said after she witnessed one contraction, she would grab the OBGYN of record by the collar of her lab coat or scrubs and scream, "What's the problem, bitch? Didn't they teach you how to do a C-section in med school?!?!?" Yep. I think she made the right choice in keeping out, although I may want her in the room when I have my first child. Besides, someone has to watch the new baby's already existing sibling. The new baby's sibling has a couple of cousins on the scene who are very young and in need of supervision as well, so my mom is there at the baby's parents' house helping the baby's grandmother. Additionally, that will allow the baby's grandmother to go to the hospital to see the baby immediately once it has made its appearance. Jillian is there, too, along with the other children's mother. Jillian is still in a weakened state and probably creates more work than she actually does, but the children love her.
The baby has been reported in advance to be a boy. With the precision of today's ultrasound technology, I'd place my bet in favor of the accuracy of the gender prediction. My ultrasound from before I was born made me look like an extra-terretrial creature. (My rude cousins from Utah say I still look like an extraterrrestrial creature, but that's another topic for another day's blog.) In this baby's ultrasound, you could see that he has Cuban coloring and looks somewhat like his paternal grandmother. He could do worse in the looks department. She's very pretty.
This place where I am now reminds me of what the polygamous cults must have been like after the Short Creek raids in the 1950's, when they rounded up all the menfolk and took 'em off to jail, and left just the women in charge of a million children. Jared and my brother Matthew are the only males present who are ten or older. They're like the polygamous equivalent to The Lost Boys. If I were slightly more able-bodied, I'd be expected to chop the firewood and plough the back forty, but being a recovering surgery patient has to be good for something. I lie on the sofa and play peek-a-boo with babies who crawl or toddle over to me. That's the extent of my contributio to the labor pool. That, and reminding The Lost Boys to put the toilet seat down.
Timmy is keeping us updated by texting. Rachelle is fully dilated and is now just beginning to push. Unless this baby is a freaking behemoth, it should be out any second. Rachelle only pushed for five minutes with her first baby, and that baby was almost a nine-pounder. This baby should be at least a pound smaller because it's just a bit early.
I'll let you know when I hear more, but word is that Grandma has already arrived at the hospital to scrub up and be handed the baby after its Mommy and Daddy have first held it. Him, that is.