It had all happened so suddenly. From trying to contact a friend to arrange dog-walking support if we had to go into hospital we went straight to driving along the streets of Manchester with Adria screaming in the passenger seat. At the hospital, the waters broke the moment we got out of the car. We didn’t make it to the ward, instead taking shelter in a bathroom with an off-shift ICU nurse who turned into our Good Samaritan. It looked for one brief moment as if our son would be born in a toilet stall.
Then, a mad wheelchair dash to the Midwifery Lead Unit, like a silly chase in an eighties movie, except it was followed by blood and screaming and what must truly be considered hard labour. Half an hour later, we had a baby boy. (I barely had a chance to sample the gas and air!) My own contribution, beyond chanting mesmerised support, was to sever the umbilical cord – a strangely official act, like stamping a ticket. “Any more fares for fatherhood…?”
We were home within twenty four hours of our arrival, and have been adjusting to the chaos ever since. We hope to be back in Church some Sunday soon, once the chaos abates a little.