A boy was born to Vinita and me on this Sunday at 1.22 pm (IST). The delivery was in Bangalore (Manipal Northside Hospital).
Minutes [Last two days]
Aug 15, 2009
Morning : India commemorates 62nd independence day. Jo Chechi and Aji Chettan (Vinita's sister and brother in law) arrive at Bangalore for a weekend visit to us. MuSa (Dr. Muralikrishnan, Faculty, NITC) comes to meet his better half. Mummy is already with us since last month. A typical getto menu - lunch with shark fry and prawns theeyal, 56 and jokes.
Evening : I and Aji chettan take Vinita for a NST testing to Manipal Northside hospital. They give Vinita a buzzer to press whenever the baby moves so that they can take the foetal ECG. Baby refuses to move. Mother is warned yet again of keeping the baby starved and is sent to canteen. Baby responds after three glasses of horlicks. The test goes fine. When asked about when we can expect the delivery, the doctor gave the usual reply - we can't tell, may be you will need to come back tonight itself.
Night : MuSa and Jasine join us. Jo chechi's special green chilli and pepper chicken curry, home made ari pattiri, our house owners' home made pizza, tender coconut water and Smirnoff Twisted V Green Apple Vodka. MuSa's kachchery, my evergreen melodies, 56 with Jasine leading the team with me and Aji chettan. MuSa stops at 2.5 as promised (he had decided to ride back to IISc). I and Aji Chettan share the remaining 10 between us without favoring either way. We part at 1 am and I go to bed. Mummy is floating a few rumors of my speeches at bed. Don't believe any of them even if you happen to hear one.
Aug 16, 2009
Morning : [5 am] I wake up hearing Mummy and Vinita quarreling. Mummy says its a fluid loss, but Vinita insists that it is urine. By 5.15, mummy wins the argument and decides that we should go to hospital. I get out of bed quickly, feeling unusually more alert than a usual post booze morning and gets ready. By then it is almost sure that it is a fluid loss. I and mummy drive Vinita to hospital. We walk into the duty nurses' room at 5.45 am and with in a few minutes I see most of them on their heals. Vinita is taken to the labour ward. Mummy says, if its a fluid loss, then they won't wait any longer. The sisters call up our gynecologist (Dr. Manonmani) over phone and are doing something on her orders.
Mean time, Aji chettan, Jo chechi and our house owners (Santhosh and Sevanthi) joins us at the labour room corridor. Dr. Manonmani comes at around 7 and rushes into the labour room. After half an hour she calls me inside and tells me -
"The fluid loss is a bit high and we have artificially compensated. But we have to take the baby out today itself. We will first try for a normal delivery by inducing some pain by medication and wait till afternoon. There is nothing to be afraid of."I said OK to everything. (I was already very impressed by the doctor during the many consultation visits that we had made to her.) I come out and tell this to others and mummy is visibly shocked but in control.
After 20 minutes, doctor comes out and starts scolding me because Vinita took tea in the early morning and that has added to her gastric problems and that she was continuously vomiting. Then she calms down and tells me that its OK, they have given antacids and that the pain inducing will start after Vinita settles down. The doctor then leaves. Nothing much happened then and Sevanthi manages to squeeze news out of whoever comes out of the labour ward.
At 9, mummy, I and Jo chechi were allowed inside one by one with the strict warning that we won't be allowed inside any more. Vinita was looking tired but recovering. By 9.30 we could hear Vinita crying of pain whenever someone opened the door. Pappa joined us in between. He too had decided to join us on the weekend since everyone is going to be here.
The previous day's boozing began to take its toll on me. My head was burning and my stomach was almost giving me away. I skipped breakfast and was half asleep on the waiting chair, pulling my head up whenever someone opened the labour room door. Doctor had paid one more visit during this time.
Noon : At around 1 pm, we saw the doctor running into the room again. In 10 minutes a dark and stout looking ayah walked with her glows on. Many were going in and out, but this particular ayah had taken my attention because of her strength of look and confidence in steps. In 5 minutes a call went out for the Pediatrician and he also was seen rushing in. Every one was now sure that something is going to happen.
At 1.30 the stout ayah slid open the door and appeared poked her head out with a smile (for the first time in the day.) and shouted -
"Yaru Appa?" [Who is the father?]I stepped ahead. She looked at me and said -
"Super Kolanthai." [Super baby]and then one more sentence in tamil-kannada which no one could make out. Pappa claimed that the the third sentence was "Penn kolanthai" [Girl Child]. Mummy refuted and debate started. Pappa won the debate. Mummy slid the door half open and called inside -
"Boy or Girl?"Ayah's voice came from inside -
"Male Boy."The pediatrician brought the baby out wrapped in a blue flannel. Eyes closed and as pale as snow. He said -
"It is a heavy baby. We will keep him under observation for 4 hours to check for hypoglycemia"and took him to a blue room on the opposite end of the corridor.
The uncertainties ended there. Vinita came out after another 2 hours - delayed mainly due to another emergency delivery in the same labour room. We shifted to a normal room. The baby was brought out for his first feeding. In between Jasine came out laughing to inform everyone present that the baby wasted no time in starting to suckle and showed no signs of stopping. He was taken back to complete the probation period and then at around 6 pm he joined back with his most trusted companion.
|From A Closer Look|
Post Script :
It is been two days now in hospital, and probably one more day should suffice. Some more snaps are available in my Picasa Album. [All clicked with flash and AF assist forced off.]
|A Closer Look|
What lingers with me as the the lead trailer clip after these few days is the scene of that ayah stretching out of the sliding door and shouting - "Yaru appa?".