December 18. We are celebrating grandson Krisâ€™ 3rd birthday as a family. Son Lukas and Ravinia, his wife, are expecting their first child that very next day, December 19. Ravinia feels confident: the child will come tomorrow. We all go home with great expectations. Soon we will see our eagerly awaited new member of the family!
Days go by. I break at least two glasses jumping up whenever the phone goes. I go about my daily business but feel suspended in time..When is this baby coming?
Text message, 23/12 early Thursday morning 02.15 at night: â€˜Things are moving!! Pains all day. I am going to call the midwife soon.â€™ Yes! We are delighted, wide awake for a while, anticipating the good news of the birth. We pray and fall back asleep.
Text message, 23/12 two hours later, around 04.30: â€˜False alarmâ€¦No real labourpains yet. Could last a few more days. Go back to sleep!â€™ Oh noâ€¦Poor Ravinia. She seemed to be in real pain, so how bad will it get for her? After we say a short prayer we do sink back, feeling slightly guilty, into our disrupted night sleep.
Awake again around 09.30 a.m 23/12. I wonder..shall I call? Hear how things are going? I decide to call around noon. My son says Ravinia is spending most of her time in the shower, the warm water helps against the pain. Not much change as of yet. They want to go to the birth clinic, just in case the delivery really begins, but need permission from the midwife. Sheâ€™ll let them know around 19.00, that night.
We pick up the other Grandma-to-be from Gouda and together we drive to Utrecht to be nearby. Grandma Gouda will be staying after the baby is born to help out. We will stay overnight at daughter Saskia. For sure the baby will be born soon.
That night we take Big Bellied Mom and a tad anxious Dad to the hospital and are relieved to hear she will be getting some pain relief in order to sleep a bit. We return to our overnight address and go to sleep feeling a little guilty againâ€¦Wished we could help bear the pain a bit, but thereâ€™s no way
Text message 24/12 with good news in the morning: â€˜No longer false alarm, the delivery has begun, Ravinia is receiving spinal pain relief and is groggy, free of pain and happily letting the labourpains do their job.â€™
We sit together in daughter Saskiaâ€™s place. Two Grandmaâ€™s, Grandpa, aunts Saskia and Suzy and we are in touch over the phone with aunts and uncle from both sides. Any news? No not yetâ€¦Tension is rising.
Text message 24/12 09.30: â€˜good news, 3 cm dilationâ€™. We all break out in happy cheers. Than we realize: another 7 cm to go. How long will it take? We eat another piece of Christmas cake, make more coffee, call the sisters and sit down for another couple of hours waiting. We speculate: 3 cm. is not much, but well, itâ€™s something! Who knows, it might suddenly go fastâ€¦We hope, we pray, we wait, we eat.
Text message 12.30: â€˜7cm!â€™ We cheer again. Now it is moving in a good direction. Those last couple of centimeters will go fast!
Text message 13.00: Ready to start pushing!!!
After another 30 minutes of waiting I collapse. This doing nothing and waiting around is taking a lot of energy! I lie down for a catnap. Just as I am about to sail away on sleepâ€™s balmy waves my phone goes.
Text message: â€˜I can only weep so hereâ€™s the news by text: Noah Michael was born at 14.32. All is well.â€™
I jump out of bed, scream out the news and we all gather and dance around the room and hug each other..Yeah!! Finally this little baby boy decided to come out and stay with us.