Wednesday, September 5, 2007

The Birth

It wasn't easy for either of us. Physically, it was demanding on Trien. She was in labor over twenty hours. Mentally and emotionally, and thus physically, it was demanding on me.

It was hard being separated from her during the whole process. While she was in the 3rd class ward, after being induced, I could stay with her and hold her hand, and possibly stroke her head. That stopped after she knocked my hand away. After visiting hours were over, I had to leave, with no way to find out what was happening. That is, unless Saras called me up with information. Saras goes to our church, and is a nurse in the maternity ward. She was keeping vigil with Trien, and acting as her personal nurse. She did internal exams, massages, and at times, prayed. All of which helped tremendously. If it wasn't for Saras, Trien would have definitely had a c-section, something we all wanted to avoid.

I was wiped out. Visiting hours were over at 7:30, and I was having trouble trying to do anything. It was raining out, and Ramesh's wife and I were waiting for him to return and take us home. Because of the rain, he didn't show up until 9.

At first when we were talking, I was feeling sick and grumpy, and wanted to tell her to shut up. I controlled myself though, and as things went on, I really enjoyed our conversation, and felt a lot better. Still, I was so tired. Ramesh came, and I picked up some pau for dinner, and some ice cream for comfort food. I had just taken a shower, and started to eat, when Ramesh called, oh, about 9:30, and said that they had just wheeled Trien into the delivery room, and they were coming back to pick me up.

I barely had time to put my clothes on before they were downstairs waiting for me.

News travels fast. When we got there, Pastor Phillip was already there. That's him in front, with the glasses. Also there was sister Grace and her husband, whose name escapes me, but he is pastor of the church in Bagan Serai. They are the couple on the right of the picture. Ramesh then left to pick up Kevin Singh from worship practice. That's Kevin on the left. I like Kevin. Him and his wife Rebecca are really cool people. (Plus they have really cute kids!) As for the mystery couple in red, between Kevin and Grace and her husband, that's Ramesh and his wife. Ramesh is another guy you got to love. He's got a great sense of humor, and is always willing to lend a helping hand. He does drive his wife crazy, but they love each other to death. He had to walk away when Trien was in the labor room, in so much pain she couldn't talk, because he couldn't stand to see anyone suffer like that. That may be because he knows what it is like to suffer himself. He suffers from an intermittently recurring infection in the lining behind his eyes that causes him excruciating pain.

I know I am forgetting some people, because I was so tired. I am under the impression that there were more people than that waiting, but I didn't get their pictures. If you were there, and I forgot you, please accept my apologies.

So we were there, and waiting. I was excited. They were excited too. When I mean waiting, I don't mean in a nice air-conditioned waiting room outside the delivery room. What I mean is waiting outside the building, in the waiting area next to the parking lot. At least there was a color TV there that worked. Around 1 am or so, we watched the end of Con Air (what a totally ridiculous film that was), and then the end of The Forgotten, which is better off left that way.

Since I wasn't even allowed in the building, I would sneak in the door to see if I could hear anything. It was silent. According to the board outside, there were 7 women in there giving birth, and the only sound I could hear was a machine going "BING!" Heck, I was expecting wild screaming and pleas for mercy, like we heard when we checked in that afternoon. Or at least some mild whimpering. But there was nothing.

So I decided to do my stupid foreigner thing, and wander around trying to find the bathroom. Still, nothing. It was if they all decided to go out for ice cream or something.

At 3am, Saras came out and said that the pregnancy was progressing slowly. They had given Trien a sedative, and she was asleep! Here I am walking around expecting to hear that our daughter was born, and she's snoozing. That was OK, though. Since the labor was so long, they wanted her to get some rest, so when the big push finally came, she would have the strength for it. Later, Trien said when the intense pain would happen, she would wake up, and then drowse for a while.

By that time, we were all sitting there drooling and looking at each other cross-eyed. Nothing was happening, Trien was asleep, so we might as well do the same.

About 8:30, I got a call from Saras. I was groggy as anything. She said that Trien had delivered a baby girl, and mother and baby were fine. Feeling like I did, that left me underwhelmed. I felt duty bound to call up my family and let them know, and as I did, I started coming to. I even got a little excited, until I realized I wouldn't be able to see Mommy and Baby until 12:30 anyway, because they wouldn't let me in until visiting hours.

-To Be Continued-