And no, I am not kidding.
I wish I was.
Actually, no I don't. This is hilarious.
It was a cold but clear autumn morning, comfortable yet not too comfortable. My father paced excitedly back and forth across the driveway as the car warmed up, making the calls that I was on my way. Now keep in mind, this was 1999, a time before things like social media and such, when news traveled slower than it now does. Despite this, in some way still unknown to my parents, by the time they reached the hospital, my mother's brother Uncle Mike had already been there for some time. He lived ten minutes farther away and was not even the first person to get the call; it's an enigma, then again so is he.
My parents checked in and were given a room. They sat for some time, my mother's patience beginning to chip away and my father hooking her up to the machine through his past knowledge other recent trips. Soon the doctor entered and only with news that my mother was not very far along and that they should just go home and wait. She would not take this, however. Rather, she went out of the room and walked the halls, and walked, and walked. It was her attempt at moving me along.
A good mile and a half later and... nothing. This was the moment in which my dad now wishes he took as a sign of how long it was going to take me to get ready in the morning.
It was now the grandparents began to arrive. And it was one, my father's father Pa, that was especially nervous. He, much like my father, and my mother, and my mother's father, and my mother's grandfather, and his father, and my little brother, and myself; he had crazy anxiety. Pa also happened to be in the process of quitting smoking, so without the cigarettes it was even worse. To help, he applied a nicotine patch, though this was not enough. What had helped before apparently was caffeine. To get some food and drinks, now several hours after arriving with little sign of myself arriving as well, the grandparents went to go get some food. Luckily there was a Pizza Hut right across the street, so they went. Pa ordered two ice coffees and two large diet cokes to caffeinate himself. The rest just had pizza. As they ate, bickering could be heard from over their shoulders. It was a customer and the manager; they were arguing. The little skirmish grew louder and louder until all other chatter ceased and all other eyes were on them. A screaming match had begun.
Suddenly, a chandelier in the pizza place crashed and shattered on the floor, no warning to it either. Everyone in the Pizza Hut was inspected for injuries; no one in my family was hurt. But that did not stop one of them from being sent to the emergency room...
Pa's caffeine was now starting to take effect, all of it. Now I am still not sure why he thought caffeine would help calm his nerves, maybe because he's addicted to that too, though the only effect it had on him was hyper activity. This would be usually not all that life threatening simply to be on a crazy sugar rush, only if it weren't for the fact the he also was on the nicotine from the patch. You're not supposed to do that, and it seems he had learned the hard way. All of the chemicals in his body evidently gave him heart palpitations and this was believed to be a heart attack. Pa spent what ended up being a several hours in the emergency room just a few floors below my parents.
Meanwhile, my other grandfather we refer to as Poppy was called by a co-worker and went to find a quiet spot to converse with them. Unfortunately, the maternity wing itself was filled with nothing but the sounds of screaming soon-to-be mothers and newborn children, occasionally scared spouses as well. Since of this, Poppy took the call from inside the nearest elevator.
This went from a pretty good idea to a really bad one rather quickly.
Not too far into call, the elevator got stuck. This situation is not a fun one, no matter who you are, but to make it worse for him, he already has anxiety and can easily to made jumpy plus someone in the elevator with him whom just happens to be very fond of elevators. At all.
The other man in the elevator was in a state of pure panic and immense fright. He walked in tight circles, his hands on his temples, then on his cheeks, then in his hair, then over his eyes, then back to his temples. The stranger was having a nervous breakdown. Minutes later, the security guards of the building were able to open doors enough to squeeze a person through, but then also realized that the elevator was frustratingly place between two floors. They could not climb up either, so they had to jump down. Poppy did not waste any time getting out of there once they let him jump. The other guy, however, was too freaked out to, so Poppy stayed to help talk him down.
It had been 10-12 hours by the time we finally had everyone in the same place, which was great, but not the end of the story. Because when you have been sitting in the hospital for 10-12 hours, suffering from not only immense irritation as a whole but ceaseless pain and hunger and thirst. These go along with several other things too. You are not happy person at this time, rather you are a monstrous and frightening being because you are just that 100% done with everything. If my father never feared my mother before, he sure as hell did that day.
It was as if she had been possessed. Her eyes molded into a look of Death; her teeth were gritting enough ultimately crush each other or anything else that got too close; her voice may have even dropped a few octaves in her growling shushes and roaring "SHUT UP!"s. Her trigger happy clicks for more morphine were the only sounds she aloud. Whispers were too loud. Eating was too loud. Walking around was too loud. Breathing was becoming too loud. And then-!
Well before anyone actually got a chance to be killed, I finally decided to show up. So in the end, it was all good. And now my family can look back at this crazy day and laugh...um, well, sort of.