My trip to Oklahoma was stranger than usual.
I had something pressing, beating against my brain. Karen, my ex-wife called the night before. She had gone into the hospital to deliver her baby. She promised to call the next day, but she didn’t. Disorganized me didn’t even ask which hospital she was in.
It’s a weird situation. Because Karen and I still feel close, I knew it would make the child’s father nervous if I tried to keep too close of tabs on her. But I care, and it’s been hard to tolerate not knowing what’s going on even if my mind tells me it’s for the best. Her water broke before she felt any contractions, and when I told my mother this, I could tell that she was concerned too. My mother told me that the same thing happened when I came into the world. There was no real warning before the arduous labor commenced.
So I drove to Oklahoma, not knowing. After I got there, my mother explained a bit more about my birth. As usual, I tried to do things backwards and land on my feet in this world. It was a long and painful process to get me turned around. She didn’t tell me when I left, because she knew I would worry even more. When I got back, I still didn’t know.
I called when I got in last night, to try to talk to the child’s father. No answer. More fear. He finally called today. While the child wasn’t a breech, Karen had to have a c-section. His head was too big, 14 inches around. She’s still in the hospital, in pain. I’m going to go see her tonight, now that I know where she is. Everyone is fine and healthy, he says. But it seems so weird to be distant when your best friend is going through such trauma. But it seemed weirder not to write, to try to get stuff out of my head.
I just found out. Sorry about the surfeit of words today, but writing does help me cope with uncertainty. It’s a narrowing of possibilities, I think. You place one word down, and the list of words that can follow is narrowed. It’s a way of making things go a certain way, of controlling something in the face of uncontrollable uncertainty.