I had such a nice chat on the phone yesterday with my dear friend, Little Wife. She was very busy cleaning house but happy to sit down for a bit and visit with me. “Little Wife,” I said. “Your house is neat as a pin! Why are you cleaning?”
“Oh my gosh,” said she. “The boys are coming home today!” So that explains everything, doesn’t it? I’m sure you know the story of Little Wife in the delivery room almost twenty-one years ago. Wait! I guess I never told you that amazing tale, did I? Well, please forgive me, and please make yourself comfortable — Mother Goose will tell you a wonderful story now.
Little Wife and her husband, Freddie Schnitzel, were happily married and had enjoyed three fantastic years as blessed parents of a happily precocious and compliant, sweet little girl. Her name was Lulu. Being a mother came easily to Little Wife, and she was overjoyed to discover that soon she would be having another baby! Pregnancy was also easy for Little Wife — she experienced very little morning sickness and even had extra energy for traveling up north with Lulu to visit the family. (She even went bear hunting with her dad, but that’s a story for another day…)
Every month, Little Wife would visit Dr. Baloo who listened to her ever-expanding tummy for the very special sound of the baby’s heartbeat. Little Wife was glowing with anticipation of the baby’s arrival, but at each visit with Dr. Baloo, she would ask the good doctor, “You hear just one heartbeat, right, Dr. Baloo?” And he said, “Yes, Little Wife, just one heartbeat.” Smiling, Little Wife would carefully climb down from the examining table and head for home to continue reading “East of Eden” — it was a compelling read, but she just couldn’t quite figure out why. Little Wife also spent extra time with little Lulu because she knew that it would be a very big adjustment for her to have a new baby in their quiet home. They went for long walks and had long talks — it was a special time for them both.
After months and weeks of expectation, the day grew nearer for Little Wife to have her baby. She was visiting Dr. Baloo for what would be one of her final exams. (teehee teehee… final exams sounds like a huge test, doesn’t it?) “Well, Little Wife,” announced Dr. Baloo with a flourish. “It looks like you’ll be having an eleven pound baby!”
“Omigosh!” exclaimed my friend. “What in the world? I’m not THAT big! I’m a rather diminutive woman with a normal-sized pregnant tummy. How can this be?” But she smiled and climbed down carefully from the examining table. “I better get home and finish making all those Christmas presents for my family and friends. And maybe I should buy some bigger baby jammies for the little tater tot.”
Well, sure enough, that night Little Wife’s water broke while she was finishing all those Christmas presents, and Freddie drove her to the hospital. Lulu went to stay overnight with her favorite Auntie and Uncle. It was a long labor, but finally Little Wife pushed one last mighty push, and delivered a smallish baby boy. Tears of joy and hugs all around the delivery room as the nurses took the little fellow and wiped him off and weighed him.
As distracted as she was, Little Wife still had to deliver the baby’s placenta. Dr. Baloo was surprised at the delay of this final phase of an otherwise uneventful pregnancy and delivery, so he took a little peek to see what was holding up the show….
“There’s another baby!” Dr. Baloo shouted. He had spotted a tiny little foot within the mysterious womb of Little Wife.
Pandemonium and amazing chaos reigned in that hospital delivery room for the next hour. Freddie Schnitzel nearly dropped the tiny baby boy he had been holding so carefully as he rushed to the side of Little Wife’s bed. At this point, Little Wife didn’t know what to think. She was not having any contractions at all — her labor was done! But how did another baby get in there? That was the question on everyone’s mind!
Breach babies are a bit of a complication, but especially SURPRISE breach babies. The medical staff decided that with such a last minute surprise at hand, they couldn’t turn the baby around for a headfirst arrival into the world. Suddenly an anesthesiologist appeared at the bedside of Little Wife as well as an surgically trained obstetrician. With much gentleness and kindness, they informed Little Wife that she would be delivering the baby via Caeserian section, and everything would be just fine.
And when she woke up, Little Wife was the mother of identical twin baby boys. “Well, my goodness,” cried Little Wife through her tears of joy as they placed the tiny little babies in her arms for the very first time. “Omigosh, look at them! How sweet and tiny they are! How much do they weigh?”
“Well,” said the neonatal nurse. “Baby number one weighs five and a half pounds. And baby number two weighs five and a half pounds also. It seems that your doctor DID guess the weight right at your last check-up. He just didn’t know how many babies you were carrying.”