Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Wasn't Born Yesterday

I really had my doubts about this past weekend.  With Jennifer just weeks away from giving birth, I was starting to think that taking an eight-hour road trip was probably not the best idea, especially if I had no intention of delivering the baby myself.  But our close friends Chad and Nicole were getting married on Saturday in Wheeling, West Virginia (home of Gumby's Cigarette & Beer World), and we didn't want to miss it.  We decided it was worth taking the chance, even if it meant sitting in nearly two hours of traffic... just to get to the Holland Tunnel.

(Above: Kyle finds a good spot in the hotel
for the bassinet... just in case)
So began Operation Do Not Give Birth.  Our mission was to get to West Virginia and back with only one child in the back seat.  For a while, I considered preparing for the possibility that our baby could be born during our crazy trip, and I intended to put together a list of the hospitals along the way, just in case we needed to rush to one.  A friend of mine also suggested printing out information about delivery so that I'd be all set should I have to deliver the baby myself at a rest stop.  I didn't like the thought of delivering our child myself, or delivering him at a rest stop, or even worse: delivering him at a rest stop in New Jersey.  The thought of that was so appalling that we became determined to not have this baby this weekend.  We decided that we'd skip on all the prep and just avoid the three major things that, according to rumor, may induce labor: dancing, stress and potholes.

BA-BOOM!  BA-BOOM!  BA-BOOM!  Okay, so we couldn't avoid the potholes.  Apparently New Jersey and Pennsylvania get their roads paved by the same people who do New York's streets.  Great stretches of highway looked as if workers had dug trenches there and then filled them up when they realized that the fighting was happening overseas.  There were bumps every few feet, stretching across the entire lane, making them almost impossible to miss.  Our little guy shifted around, but still didn't feel the time was right.  Phew!

BA-BOOM!  BA-BOOM!  BA-BOOM!  We couldn't avoid the severe weather, either, and that caused a bit of stress.  It was just before 10 p.m. Friday night, as we were on the road near Harrisburg, when the beautiful lightning display we had been seeing turned into Armageddon.  A waterfall burst from the sky, pounding our car and everything surrounding us.  Within seconds we were practically floating on water.  I think I saw a submarine pass by us on the interstate, but it was very hard to see anything at all.  We took the next available exit, and as we contemplated staying at the local hotel/trucker hook-up spot, the rain suddenly turned into a pleasant mist.  We went back on the highway and continued for another hour or so, and the stress had no impact on the baby-to-be.  Phew!

BA-BOOM!  BA-BOOM!  BA-BOOM!  Then came the live wedding band.  That was perhaps the most dangerous part.  We made it to Wheeling without incident, only to play with fire after the nuptials.  While I spent most of the reception chasing after Kyle (who chose to turn the reception into a triathlon practice), Jennifer took a quick spin on the dance floor.  By taking a spin, I don't mean she did anything wild and crazy, like break dancing.  While that would have been fun to watch, it probably wouldn't have been good for the baby or our mission.  No, Jennifer just stood there, swaying her arms and moving slightly.  Her plan worked perfectly, and, by the time we returned to the hotel, there were no signs of labor.  Phew!

The drive home went smoothly, except for the aforementioned potholes.  We held our breath through New Jersey, partly because of our desire not to have a baby there, and partly because of the air pollution.  Once we hit New York City, we celebrated.  Mission accomplished!  Our kid's going to be a New Yorker after all.  We got home - just the three of us - and had an uneventful evening.  So, no baby yet.  He will arrive this month, but hopefully, when that time comes, we'll be in a hospital with Jennifer's doctor right there.

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