False alarm. It’s usually a relief to hear those words. You thought the building was on fire but you find out it’s a false alarm — you’re relieved. You think you see your dreadful ex walking toward you in a Starbucks. False alarm. Phew, dodged that bullet. But when you’re pregnant, the words false alarm take on new meaning. All of a sudden false alarms involve timing contractions, multiple midnight trips to the hospital, being hooked up to IVs and monitors, and your husband sleeping with one foot dangling from the bed as if, even while sleeping, he’s ready to slip his feet into his shoes, jump in the car and make yet another trip to the hospital at a moment’s notice — only to once again hear those words — false alarm.
The last month of pregnancy feels like a whole nine months of its own. The nursery is ready, mommy to be is beyond uncomfortable with an itchy, heavy tummy that ripples with each squirm of a baby that’s running out of room in there. Her extremities are swollen, her back hurts, she’s tired. And each day the contractions come and she huffs and puffs and moans and wonders if this will be the day she’ll meet her daughter. And it isn’t. Daddy to be is a wild eyed, messy haired bundle of nerves who’s so exhausted from the false alarms and from doting on my every need that he nods off at inappropriate times. But he’s my hero. Every night, he’s my hero. And when the painful contractions come and I work myself into a frenzy, he soothes me and breathes with me and doesn’t show an ounce of impatience when we make that fifth trip to the hospital, knowing in our hearts that we will once again hear those words — false alarm.
We can’t wait to meet our Hailey. And though frustrating, we know that every false alarm means one more day that she can grow and develop in her current home before she joins us in our home. So we’ll be patient. We know that it’s only a matter of time before our false alarms give way to real labor and to us finally being able to leave the hospital with our daughter in tow. We’re ready when you are, Hailey.