Mom made the time from when her water broke to my birth sound like a short film David Lynch would have made in college. All she needed was Eraserhead as her OB/GYN. Dad took her to the hospital not long after her water broke. At Muskegon General Hospital, now Mercy General, Mom was examined by Nurse Moore. She was rumored to be an alcoholic, not to mention a bit kooky. This was 1972, way before drug testing, HIPAA, and all of the serious rules in medical care came along. Nurse Moore seemed amused when she told Mom she heard two heartbeats through the stethoscope. She used a marker to write two Xs on Mom's belly, telling her that she might be having twins. Mom later showed the two Xs to Dad, who said Nurse Moore was a drunk.
Dad, surprisingly, slept in the bed next to Mom as she endured labor pains through the night, my birth taking a long time. Mom ended up getting two injections to induce labor. With the second injection, Nurse Moore said," Now don't tell anyone we're doing this..." The hot August weather turned dark, thunder outside. The hospital building was new, unlike the creepy old Osteopathic Hospital downtown, where Mom gave birth to my two oldest brothers, in 1963 and 1965. My third brother was born at General in 1967. Once Torrence House, the Osteopathic is now the Red Cross building. Still old and creepy.
Mom was later taken to the delivery room when her doctor arrived, followed by a group of interns. She had not given permission, but the strangers looked her over as a lesson during rounds, something new to Mom after three previous deliveries. I don't think they made any comments about the two Xs on her belly.
I was born, finally, around eleven in the morning. I was a big baby, with a lot of hair. The nurses remarked that Mom must have had gas. What pregnancy farts have to do with hair, I'll never know. Mom was relieved to have a girl after three boys, already a handful. She wanted to see me as soon as I came out, not wanting to wait after I was cleaned up. The nurses obliged her, wrapping me in a blanket and handing me to her. I think she wanted to see for herself that she had finally had a girl. I was covered in birth-goo, looking like Freddy Krueger as a newborn, but a mother's love is unconditional(most of the time). Dad would follow up with a vasectomy. No more kids:)