In the beginning, she wasn’t sure.
Maybe it was nothing.
Maybe it was just gas, the taco she had for dinner last night.
She lay there, waiting and there was nothing. It was nothing.
And she drifted almost to sleep.
But again that rolling not quite hurting pain.
A hardening, separating from the familiar softness.
And there was the hardening almost pain and the soft not pain, the first act.
And she said, “I think we had better get up.”
And so they got up. And her waters broke.
So she called out. Because she knew they should hurry now.
Call the doctor, give words to what was happening.
And there was some pain and the not pain, the second act.
And she said, “I need towels to sop up the water.”
She paid attention to the passage of time. How long between?
She gathered together every good thing that was necessary, that she had prepared.
And there was more pain and the not pain, the third act.
And she said, “We should go now, to the hospital.”
In the car, she prepared herself.
But still, in the hospital, it was more than she remembered.
There was the paperwork and the wheelchair.
There was the lying down and the light overhead.
And now the pain, when it came, caught up her breath and clenched her ribs, the fourth act.
And she said, “Go away, go away, go away or make it stop.”
Because there were people.
Good people, kind people, knowledgeable people, but so many people.
People pressing in while pain pressed out, the fifth act.
And she screamed, “Let me push!”
Now there was no not-pain. Now there was need for concentration.
First the effort of no effort, until the command, until the release.
Then she pushed. She breathed and pushed. She focused and pushed.
She squeezed out tears and she pushed out a baby.
And she smiled and said, “She looks like my grandmother, a little old wrinkled lady.”
And she saw that she was good.
She blessed her, and she said to her, “Be strong and gentle, fill your heart with care for this world.”
She said, “See, see my breast, here is your food, your strength. Latch on, my love.”
And it was so.
Woman saw everything that she had made, and indeed, it was very good.
And there was evening and there was morning, the birth day.