By Sara Nolan
You can’t fail at birth, they tell you.
But you sure fucking can, and here’s how you do it.
It starts when your baby’s heart rate slows down so much that even a novice midwife, or, for that matter, even a four year-old, would know something was wrong.
In my case, you could think whole profound thoughts between those heart beats. You felt like John Cage, because the silence was as loud as the noise. You felt like a Buddhist Monk whose awareness is so attuned she can see through the holes in time and space to an eternal present where your baby’s next heartbeat never comes.
Well, it wasn’t that bad.
Yes, it kind of was.
My husband doesn’t freak out. Generally. But stooped in the desk chair by my bedside, he had the same look on his face I get when I burn toast, or when the baby (yes, there is a baby at the end of this) gets a little too pinkish red around the lips, or when my computer doesn’t save my hard-won revisions. Panic. In him, though, it’s only detectable by those who know that slight agitation in the corner of his eyes means the earth went off its axis to court Mars. Continue Reading…