Monday, December 05, 2005
You Wouldn't Believe It If I Told You...
Previously, I briefly touched on how "surreal" Sadie's birthday was. I know my West Coast friends have taken great pleasure in making sure everyone this side of the Grand Canyon knows, so here is the East Coast feed - direct from the source. I can laugh about it now that a week has gone by.
Krissy and I scheduled a C-Section for Dec. 12th. I could go on about how odd it is that you "schedule" your child's birthday; it all seems a little "Gattica" to me but I digress...
We had a great Thanksgiving with our MTV friends Jenn and Joe and my buddy and buisness partner David and his family. With a child about to fall out of her womb, my superwoman wife still managed to cook an amazing dinner (with Jenn's help). The holiday weekend was off to a good start.
Friday, completely unrealted to Krissy's cooking, Ella came down with a massive stomach virus. Puking every half hour, poor thing. It's been going around and I guess it was Ella's turn.
By Saturday morning Ella was feeling much better...but Krissy wasn't. Now she had the bug and was puking every couple of minutes. While I do not wish this on anyone, I admittedly didn't give Krissy as much sympathy as she deserved. Maybe it is our fundemental view on vomiting:
My wife could practically vomit on cue. Everything makes her nauseous - the car, certain foods, watching Fear Factor - you name it. Add two bouts of 6 month+ morning sickness on top if and she handles throwing up like a pro. She'll excuse herself, I'll hear her cough in the bathroom, she'll return and I'll ask if she's ok. "Oh fine. I just threw up."
This is where we differ. For me puking is the most vile, violent, horrible thing that can happen to you. That feeling creeps up on me, I break into a cold sweat, every single muscle in my body locks, and my stomach turns into a supersoaker. For the moment while I am puking it's like all time stops. I have no control over my body and I make one of the most violent, disgusting roars this side of Godzilla. I have been known to rip sinks out of dorm room bathrooms, grind grooves of my finger nails into toilet seats - it's not a pretty sight.
All Saturday night, Krissy is getting up and puking and it was horrible. Mainly because it was really disrupting all of the TiVO that I had to catch up on. I had to pause it every time she sprinted for the bathroom...cause I'm considerate.
About 3am I felt it. I woke to the sound her in the bathroom and it started to make me ill. I have a strong stomach. This never happens. I think that is why vomiting is so horrible to me - I can count the number of times I've thrown up on one hand, maybe two. So now I have the creeping feeling...and its getting worse.
At 4am I joined the club and Krissy and I had some nice together time vomiting into various recepticles around the house. We dozed off somewhere around 6:30 and were woken up by Ella. She was feeling like a champ by now and wanted to play. She wanted to watch tv. She wanted cereal. She wanted anything but to watch mommy and daddy lay in bed with garbage cans next to them.
All this time Krissy had cramps. She assumed it was from all the puking, but now she was getting concerned. We also came to realization that neither of us could physically sit up let alone get out of bed and take care of Ella. Krissy called her sister Robin to beg and plead and see she could watch Ella for the day. Luckily Robin felt like playing hookie and said she would help us out.
While we waited for Robin and her fiance Robert to save us, we passed the time hurling and trying to get Ella to stop jumping up and down on the bed. Krissy's cramps got worse and it dawned on her - can I be in labor? When Ella was born Krissy actually got the epidural before she even conceived, so labor pains are new to her.
Krissy called the doctor. They said go to the hospital. Crap. We can't stand let along drive. Ok, we thought, we'll have Robin and Robert drive us to the hospital. It's probably a false alarm and we can return to our beds and they can take Ella for a few months.
Krissy manages to stand upright. Luckily, and even though this is two weeks ahead of schedule, her bag is already packed. Her clothes are laid out - in fact I think all she had to do was step into them.
Meanwhile I made my way to the bathroom to see if I could physically turn myself inside out. The wave came, the cold sweat broke out all over, but nothing happened. Then I started to feel pins and needles in my feet and fingers. This had been happening during the last few hurls so I wasn't alarmed. Suddenly they got worse, much worse. Picture your leg being as asleep as it could be. Numb. Then the pins and needles start and you can't even walk on it. Got it? Multiply that by a hundred. And it was spreading - up my legs, up my arms, across my chest.
This is the unbelievable part. Within seconds I was paralyzed. I swear to God. I could not even move my jaw to talk. I had no idea what was happening to me.
I guess I managed to make some sound because Krissy ran into the bathroom. When I saw her reaction - that's when I got scared. Krissy's father was a stroke victim, so she is very atune to the symptoms. I guess I was displaying all of them.
I could register what she was saying but I couldn't answer her. All I could do was blink. She grabbed the phone and called 911. It wasn't until I heard her describing my condition to the operator that it really hit me. My face was drooping. All my joints were locked. My hands had shrunk into those "claws" cerebral palsy patients have.
I instantly thought of Ella. I did not want her seeing my like this. God forbid this was my time, I did not want this sight to be the image burned into her brain. It practically guaranteed she would become a stripper or a serial killer. While Krissy kept Ella away and stayed on the phone with 911.
I also came to realization that my wife was having a baby and I was completely upstaging her.
You know when you hear a siren in the distance? It starts real faint, gets a little louder, and then grows faint again? It's entirely different when you hear sirens and YOU KNOW THEIR FINAL DESTINATION IS YOUR HOUSE. It doesn't grow faint. It gets louder...and louder...and louder and before long you are in your underwear, paralyzed, with 9 firemen (and firewomen) staring at you. Nice. I used to watch Cops and always think, "Why don't they ever have a shirt on when the police come?" Now I know.
The paramedics lifted me onto my bed where I began to convulse with more cramps. I was also severely worried that Krissy was going to shit her pants when she saw the dirt they were tracking through the house.
For the next couple of minutes I only remember two sounds. A paramedic saying, "You're going to be ok," and the distant voice of Ella telling everyone, "My daddy's in there naked!"
Now Robin and Robert show up - just in time. They get Ella calmed down and manage to stop Krissy from asking the firemen to kindly remove their shows. At least the thought of my having a stroke completely drove the nasuea from her body. She became Wonder Woman.
Krissy threw sweat pants and a shirt on me and the paramedics strapped me to a stair chair. This is a special chair designed to get people down the steps. There are 9 firemen standing around. 7 beef cake calendar looking guys. One skinny guy and one petite woman. I understand being equal in the work place. I understand feminism, but fuck it - do the wimp and the chick have to be the ones to carry me? This girl looks like her left eye is about to pop out of her skull she is straining so bad...
They ask me what hospital I want to go to - West Hills or Tarzana. Well, I want to go to Cedars in L.A. cause that's where my wife and fetus are going. No dice. They can only take me to those two hospitals. You've got to be fucking kidding me.
It is decided that Robin will take Krissy and Ella to Cedars and Robert will follow the ambulance to West Hills. Just like in the movies they transer me to a stretcher and wheel me outside. All my neighbors are on their lawns looking. They think Krissy's water must have broke and I am having an anxiety attack.
The petite girl gets in the ambulance with me and there I am. Laying in the exact same position Hannibal Lecter was when he sat up and took that guy's face off of his head. The exact same position I have seen in a million movies. I step outside myself and watch the scene. This movie sucks.
By now I am starting to get feeling back in my body but the rocking of the ambulance is making me really ill. At this point we still thought Krissy's cramps was a false alarm so I am not too concerned. I figure she will be back home before I will.
I get wheeled into the emergency room. I could go into detail but just picture a montage of nurses not finding a vein and sticking me several times, some puking, some horrible show on ESPN, an IV, and a male nurse that keeps begging me to pee.
Somewhere into hour three Robert tells me they are wheeling Krissy into the delivery room to have the baby. You've got to be kidding me. Some how they get Krissy on the phone on the wall behind me and I assure her I am going to be ok. Robin is going to play daddy this time and scrub in.
So I sit, watching ESPN, knowing that across town my wife is about to undergo this monumental event and I am going to miss it all. That's right, she is having a baby but it's all about me.
Now, what I have not mentioned so far are our friends David and Jane (from Thanksgiving). Krissy and Jane share the same doctor...and Jane has a scheduled C-Section...oh...um...now. Like the juggler on Carson that never makes it to air, Jane get's bumped so they can rush Krissy in. I have turned off Three's Company because more plausible situations than this seemed ridiculous.
I was released later that day and my paralysis was attributed to severe dehydration and no C02 in my body from dry heaving and puking so much. I also looked like a heroin junkie from all the places the nurses tried to insert an IV and failed.
Robert drives me to Cedars and I am told Krissy is still in recovery and will be brought to her room shortly. I look down the hall and see David standing at the nursery window. I walk down and there is beautiful Sadie Jane...laying next to the dashing Max Hudson Armour. Saide and Max - they sound like an old Jewish couple already. I bet they kick ass at Marjong.
Krissy and I were reunited and she looked amazing. She looked like she climbed a flight of stairs, not had her stomach slit open, organs moved aside, baby ripped out and skin stapled back together. That's my wife.
And that was what I meant when I said the day was surreal. You couldn't print it if it wasn't true.
at 5:11 PM