False Alarm…


Arghh. Looks like I spoke too soon. Sari’s Thursday-night contractions were false labor. After they stopped (at about 5:30 a.m.), they never came back. Seems they really were brought on by the stomach bug she had, and now she’s (mostly) over that, the contractions have not returned.

Of course, that may be for the best, at least for the next couple of days, as I seem to have acquired a couple of “itises”: bronchitis and conjunctivitis. Guess that “summer cold” I’ve been suffering from for the last week got out of hand. And pinkeye?! I thought you only got that if you were a 19-year-old college student. Oy. I was all laid-out yesterday, hacking like a cancer patient, with a temperature of nearly 102, which is what finely sent me to the doctor.

What a pair Sari & I make! My theory is all my maladies were brought on by our Thursday night hospital visit. Why do they keep those triage rooms so damn cold? Fuckers.

Well, now I’m doped up on multiple antibiotics, steroids, and codeine-doused cough syrup, so we’re actually hoping to get a couple of days’ respite — for me to get better — before Sari goes into actual labor. Course, if she doesn’t go into labor by Wednesday (by which point she’ll be ten days past-due), they’re gonna induce her anyway, so we’ll definitely be parents by then.

Right? Right?

Labor? Pre-labor?


Finally! Sari started having real contractions today. Poor thing, they were brought on by a touch of the stomach flu, and some stomach cramping, but they were real by-gosh contractions. About ten minutes apart, and pretty strong, lasting about four minutes each. Sari powered through each one like a trooper. She vocalized, I vocalized — it was just like a high school pep rally!

Our doc, however, was a little concerned to hear Sari wasn’t feeling the baby moving during all this, so she had us go to the hospital, just to make sure everything was okay. We spent a couple of hours there while they did the fetal monitor/ultrasound thing. Everything is fine, of course, but Sari’s not the least bit dilated, so they sent us home.

The contractions kept going through all this, even as we were heading out to find a car service, so there were multiple pauses along the way as Sari dealt with the pain. At one point, as we were leaning against a wall in a hallway, Sari was transfixed by one of those cheesy pieces of generic art you see in hospitals and motels everywhere. It was a neon-colored pastel landscape in the “Fauvist” style, and in her compromised state, Sari thought it was the most wonderful thing she’d ever seen!

After our little art appreciation moment, I got her in a cab, headed back to our place, and put the exhausted gal to bed. Now the contractions seem to have subsided, hopefully to let her sleep through the night. But I wouldn’t be surprised if they start up again tomorrow, and we get to go back to the hospital for real (once they become more regular and closer together).

That’s my hope. We’re looking forward to meeting our kiddie!!

Adolescent Schizophrenia


When I was 14 or 15 I used to hear voices. It was during a very stressful time in my life, when I had just moved from San Francisco to New York City. I was unhappy where I lived with my mom (in Brooklyn’s DUMBO, way before the current revitalization), and I longed to move in with my dad, step-mom, and half-brother.

The voices spoke to me during especially stress-filled parts of my day, but were not directly caused by the specific situation I was in. They did not manifest themselves as direct responses to a situation, but, instead, seemed to happen more frequently when I was unsure of something. If I was at my dad’s and I was about to go back to my mom’s house, the day would be filled with voices.

The voices never actually said anything, as much as they suggested things to me. They were soft and soothing… but garbled. They had the quality of some sort of alien child that knew me quite well, but hadn’t yet mastered the art of communication. Regardless, when they spoke I seemed to get the gist of what was said, and since they often came at some sort of crossroads, when I was deciding which course of action to take, they seemed to almost guide me in a certain direction. They worried me enough for me to mention them to my mother, but they didn’t become dominant enough for me to ever get really scared.

Soon, I moved to my dad’s — first temporarily, then permanently — and I began seeing a therapist. Because of these changes (or maybe not?) the voices soon disappeared and I never heard them again. They remain only as a fleeting memory or sensation, like the remnant of a dream.