My daughter Amanda is a stay-at-home mom with a 3-year old daughter named Evelyn, and is married to an Army guy currently deployed to Iraq. Her second baby (a boy) was due on January 12th. My plan was to drive to Georgia with my husband Jim on Monday, Dec. 21st (arriving in the evening) and I would stay with her until the end of January. My husband would of course have to leave after the holidays to return to work.
Since I am writing this blog on January 1st, you probably know where this is going. However, I bet there will be a surprise or two for you in the story.
The saga began on Saturday, December 19th, in Haines City, Florida. My husband and I were spending the evening at my in-laws house for an early Christmas dinner. Mid-way through dinner, we received a phone call from Amanda, indicating that her neighbor had taken her to the hospital because she had been sick all night, and she thought she was going into labor.
Jim made an airline reservation for me to fly out to Columbus, Georgia first thing the next morning. First thing. Really. I had to get up at 3:15 am in order to shower and get to the airport on time. Needless to say, I didn’t sleep at all that night, because there were a lot of things that we had planned to do on Sunday before leaving in the car on Monday morning.
They sent Amanda home from the hospital that night, because after giving her an IV, her contractions stopped. They attributed them to dehydration. So, Sunday around noon, she and Evelyn picked me up from the airport. We stopped on the way home to have lunch, and then decided to stop at the commissary for some groceries. It seemed that it was all a false alarm, but I was glad that I was there “just in case”.
That night, Amanda was up most of the night with back pain. I didn’t even realize that she was up; I slept like a baby myself after not having any sleep the night before. In the morning, she calmly said, “I think we need to go to the hospital now”. So, Amanda called her neighbor to watch Evelyn …..children are not allowed in the hospital because of the H1N1 virus, and I tried to act calm as we had to scrape ice off of the windshield of the car before we could drive to the hospital! Remember, I’m a Florida girl ….ice? What’s up with that?
Amanda insisted that I not drop her off at the door of the hospital; she felt we could park and walk in. It wasn’t an extremely long distance, but it was VERY cold, and, not having ever gone into labor myself (both my deliveries were scheduled c-sections), I really didn’t know what to expect, and since she had been through this before, I decided that she was the expert and my job at this point was to do whatever she wanted. So, we walked in. And then …….we walked, and walked, and walked some more! The maternity triage department was on the opposite side of the hospital, on the 4th floor! Amanda knew this, by the way. Remember, she had been there two days earlier. At this point, I was beginning to think I was in the presence of a super-being.
We get to triage, and they are exremely busy.
After a while, we started to smell smoke. Yes, I said SMOKE. The gas-smelling kind. Then we started to hear bells ….you know, the kind you hear in a department store that usually mean they have spotted a shoplifter? The nurses were scampering around, and looked a tad too busy to answer questions like …”Should we be concerned about a fire or something?”
A little while later, the intercom came on with “Code Red in the kitchen”. I looked at Amanda, and said, “Code Red? That doesn’t sound good”. A few minutes later, the intercom came on again with “Code Red in the dining room”. At this point, I wanted a schematic of the hospital, but I doubted that any of the nurses would accommodate me; they looked entirely too busy.
During all of this, I called my husband, who was already on the road heading toward Columbus. He was pretty surprised when I told him that we were in the hospital, and that she was being admitted. He had pretty much decided that Saturday was a false alarm, and that he would probably not be with us when the baby decided to arrive. Now, however, it was a race against time …he wanted to make it to the hospital before the baby showed up.
Cutting out about 4 hours, where Amanda when to Labor and Delivery, and we both napped a while (epidurals are a wonderful thing) ….Jim showed up about an hour before Liam David Hatcher entered the world!
Back to the smoke …..after Liam was born, we found out that floors 1, 2, and 3 had been evacuated due to a fire in the cafeteria! (Remember, we were on the 4th floor.)
So, as a result of this adventure, knitting was put on the back-burner for about a week. I can’t remember the last time I went a whole week without knitting! I needed a quick fix, so I decided to cast on a pair of socks for Evelyn; child’s size 8. I had some leftover yarn from designing my Garter Stitch Stocking Gift Card Holder (a free pattern on Ravelry); Regia Softy in color 425, a cream ……it was perfect for the project. I used Sock Wizard to create the pattern, and decided to make sport socks, because I was not sure how much yarn I had left in the skein.
I finished them in 3 or 4 days (with lots of time off to play with the grandkids)! I think she likes them, don’t you?
By the way, did I mention that Amanda knits too? Check out these cute pictures!