Life After You

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Chapter 30

“Holy crap, getting out of bed is like training for the Olympics.” I sigh, finally able to stand up straight while waddling over to my bathroom.

“You didn’t tell me you were interested in the Olympics!” Riley says from the other end of the phone.

“I’m not Rie.” I sigh, rolling my eyes. I balance my phone between my shoulder and ear while I go to the bathroom, and I hear Riley sigh.

“Can you not piss while we’re on the phone?” He asks.

“You’re the one who called me early in the morning. I can’t control my bladder right now, you know that.” I laugh, flushing the toilet after wiping.

“So why did you call me Rie?” I ask while washing my hands and drying them on my bathroom towel.

“Oh! I wanted to know if you wanted to do lunch with me and Tori today.” He asks.

“Sure, where at?”

“iHop?” He says.

“Oh my gosh, yes!” I smile though he couldn’t see.

“Great, we will pick you up in twenty minutes.” Then Riley hangs up the phone.

“Twenty minutes? I can’t get ready in twenty minutes!” I exclaim to myself.

I begin waddling over to my closet to pick out some yoga pants and a large T-shirt. It’s basically the only thing that fits right now. I am eight and a half months pregnant now, and these last few weeks have been very life altering.

I pee like every five minutes, and my back is always aching. Walking is the only exercise I get nowadays, and my stomach is so big, I can’t even see my feet anymore.

Noah and I have gone on quite a few more dates since our first one at Olive Garden. He’s also been helping me with some of my school work, since I haven’t made an appearance in majority of my classes lately. Dr. J has put me on bed rest, with limited mobilization. He said I could walk around for only an hour or two each day, and the rest of the time I need to be resting.

I don’t mind, sleeping has become my favorite hobby.

My due date is March 15th, but hopefully he comes sooner than that.

After I throw my long wavy hair up into a ponytail, I throw on a pair of black flats and grab my bag. I throw it over my shoulder and head toward the door of my apartment.

I lock the door behind me, and wait on the sidewalk for Riley and Tori.

About ten minutes later, they pull up and Tori gets out of the car to help me. She walks me over to the car and helps me inside, then gets inside herself.

“Hungry sissy?” Riley smiles through the rearview mirror.

“Yes!” I shout, causing him to roll his eyes playfully.

“How are you feeling?” Tori asks, turning her head to cast me a glance.

“I’m fine, just a little tired.” I say, smiling.

“Tired? You went to bed at seven-thirty last night and only just woke up whenever I called you.” Riley says, laughing.

“You try carrying a tiny human inside of you and see how much energy you have!” I defend myself, slightly running my hand along my belly.

“I can’t believe you still haven’t decided on a name yet, your due date is right around the corner.” Tori says, causing me to frown.

“I know! I just can’t decide. I’m thinking once I actually see him, a name will come to me like you said.”

“One can hope, otherwise I’ll be calling my nephew No-Name Harper.” Riley laughs.

“His last name is going to be Cavalier.” I correct my brother. “Not Harper.”

Riley smiles with a nod, understanding.

“I want to keep his name going.” I say, leaning my head against the window of the car. “Wake me up when we get there.”

“Um Liv.” Tori says.

“Yeah?” I say sleepily while my eyes begin to flutter.

“We’re here.” She chuckles.

My eyes open wide and I sit up. “Dang it.”

We all get out of the car, and Riley helps me walk inside of the restaurant.

The host takes us to our seats, and I carefully sit down while grabbing my menu to look over.

“Hm, what am I hungry for?” I wonder out loud, trying to decide on if I want waffles, or a juicy hamburger.

“Liv, you can’t want a hamburger at nine-thirty in the morning.” Tori laughs.

“Says you! Yesterday morning Noah brought me onion rings.” I laugh.

“Dang, we should have invited Noah.” Riley says. They have both been hanging out a lot more since I have started dating Noah. He felt bad at first, as if he were betraying Landon, but I assured him that Landon wouldn’t want him to miss out on having fun at his expense.

“We’re allowed to move on with our lives Riley, he’ll understand.” I remember telling Riley one night.

“He’ll live.” I laugh. “He’s probably stuffing his face in the school cafeteria anyway.” I shrug.

“True, that boy can eat.” Riley laughs.

“I think I’m going to get the spicy chicken and waffles with a side of hashbrowns.” I smile, happily closing my menu.

“Hm, that sounds good. I’m going to have the same.” Tori says, closing her menu as well.

“You guys have fun with your waffles, but I’m having the ultimate sticky cinnamon bun pancakes!” Riley sighs happily.

“Oh, can I have some?” I ask with rose eyebrows.

“Um, I don’t think so!” Riley pouts.

The server comes by and takes our orders, then leaves us to chat.

We talk randomly for a few minutes and then the server brings out our food.

“Wow, fast service.” I smile at the server who shoots me a wink.

“Hey back up buddy, she’s spoken for.” Riley announces while shooting a glare toward the server.

His eyes slightly widen, and he simply nods before walking away.

“Riley, why did you have to embarrass him like that?” I laugh.

“He was being flirty.” He shrugged.

I rolled my eyes and began eating my delicious food.

“Wow, this spicy chicken really is spicy!” I say, taking multiple drinks from my glass of water.

“You better slow down.” Tori laughs. “You aren’t supposed to be eating a lot of spicy foods.”

“I’ll be fine.” I smile, taking another bite of my hashbrowns that I drowned in ketchup.

“I’ll be right back, I need to pee.” I say, standing up.

“Need some help?” Tori asks.

“I can pee by myself Tor.” I roll my eyes. “Be right back.”

I get up slowly, and begin waddling over toward the bathrooms. As I walk inside, I smile at the fact that I’m alone. I walk into the big handicap stall and sit on the toilet to pee.

I wrinkle my eyes in confusion, because this didn’t feel like a normal pee. I stand up and look in the toilet to see small traces of blood in my pee and notice that there’s an odd color to the liquid. I quickly pull up my pants and continue examining the toilet water.

“What the heck...” I say, and then suddenly I feel a very sharp pain shoot through my entire stomach. I clutch my stomach with one hand and lean against the wall. I realize what is happening and I reach for my bag to get my cellphone.

Except, that’s when I realize that I left my bag and cellphone out on the table with Riley and Tori.

Panic starts to set in as the contractions get worse and worse, keeping me from being able to walk.

I slowly slide down the wall and sit on the bathroom floor.

There’s only one thing left to do, so I do it.

I begin screaming at the top of my lungs for help, praying that someone hears me.

Minutes go by, and no one has come into the bathroom yet. I really start to panic when I feel even harsher contractions. My fingernails are digging into the sides of my thighs as each one hits.

“Help!” I scream again, this time as loud as I can.

After a few more seconds, I hear the door to the bathroom finally swing open.

“Hello? Please help me!” I say, startling the woman who walked in. I only say that, because I notice their feet slightly jump.

“A-are you okay dear?” The older woman asks, nearing my bathroom stall door.

“No, I’m going into labor and I need you to call 911!”

“Oh Goodness. Okay, hang on! Let me go grab my cellphone!” The woman says while rushing out of the bathroom.

Moments later, the doors bursts open and I’m thankful when I hear Tori’s voice.

“Olivia? Are you okay? Can you open the stall door please?” Tori says with a panic to her voice.

“I can’t move Tori. It hurts so bad. Please get someone to help open the stall.” I say, beginning to cry due to the pain.

“Fuck that, they will take forever!”

Suddenly, I see Tori lay down flat on the floor as she squeezes through the small opening near the bottom of the stall door. Once she’s inside the stall with me, she reaches up and opens the door, so when the paramedics get here they can easily access me.

Tori crawls over to me and takes my hand in hers.

“I told you that you shouldn’t have eaten that spicy chicken!” She smiles, happy that I am about to give birth to my baby boy.

“He’s two weeks early!” I say, trying to smile myself despite the pain that shoots through me every few minutes.

“Tori! Is she okay?” We hear Riley yell through the bathroom door.

“She’s fine Rie! Just going into labor.” Tori shouts.

“That’s it, I’m coming in!” He says, before the bathroom door swings open and Riley is at my side.

“Riley, you aren’t supposed to be in here.” I say, a slight smile on my face.

“My little sister is going into labor, you need me. I don’t care about stupid bathroom procedure.” He says, taking my other hand in his.

A few moments later, the same older woman who came in before walked through the door again.

“Honey, I’ve called an ambulance, they are on their way!” She says, her eyes widening when she sees the three of us on the bathroom floor.

“Thank you so much.” Riley says to the older woman.

“Not a problem and congratulations young man. I bet you’re excited to be father.” The older woman smiles at Riley.

“Actually, I’m the uncle.” He smiles. “This is my sister. That’s my beautiful woman over there.” He motions toward Tori who slightly blushes.

“Oh, my apologies. Still, congrats!” She says once more before leaving the bathroom again.

“God this hurts!” I yell, squeezing the life out of both Riley and Tori’s hands. “My body wants me to push.”

“No! You can’t start pushing until we get to the hospital!” Riley shouts, feeling scared about potentially seeing me give birth right here in this iHop bathroom.

“I can’t exactly control it!” I glare, squeezing their hands even tighter than before.

“Liv, you’re going to break my hand!” Tori whines, trying to pull away though I won’t let her.

“Where the hell is this ambulance!” Riley shouts, and soon after he does, the bathroom door swings open again.

Two paramedics push a stretcher into the bathroom, and then come over to examine me.

“Hello Ms. My name is David, how far apart are your contractions?” He asks.

“I don’t know, like seven minutes.” I say, really wishing I had some pain medication.

“Alright, John and I are going to help you up and place you onto the bed. Are you ready?” He asks.

“Like I have a choice.” I grunt as Tori and Riley step away to let the paramedics to their jobs.

After a few minutes, they both get me onto the stretcher and they begin pushing me out of the bathroom and out to the ambulance.

“Tori, grab my bag please. You guys go get my hospital over-night bag from my apartment please and meet us at the hospital.” I say, before they shut the ambulance doors.

I let out a scream as another round of contractions pulse through me.

“My body is making me push!” I yell, catching the attention of both David and John.

“Alright, you’re going to have to start pushing.” David instructs as he places a sheet over my lap. “Are you alright with me taking off your pants?” He asks.

“Go ahead.” I say, allowing him access to do so. Once I’m naked from below the waist, David softly lifts the sheets to check and see if I’m crowning at all yet.

It feels weird having a complete stranger see such a private part of me, but I know he is only doing his job.

“Okay Olivia, if you feel like pushing, allow yourself to do so. Even if you give birth right here in this ambulance, we are only fifteen minutes away from the hospital.” David says, giving me a reassuring smile.

“Okay.” I say wearily.

“We already called Dr. J and he is meeting us at the hospital.” David says soon after.

A few minutes go by, and the urge to push begins again. I start pushing but suddenly I find it hard to get a breath in.

“David... something’s not right.” I say. I try to relax myself and take in a few deep breaths but am unsuccessful.

All of a sudden, I can’t breathe at all and I’m thrashing my arms about as panic begins to set in.

“Olivia, please, you need to calm down. Your heart rate is beating too fast!” David instructs.

“John, you need to get us there faster!” David yells toward his partner. “We’re losing her!”

I feel my eyes growing heavy as I continue trying to take in rigid breaths. The urge to push is still there and I can’t stop it. I continue pushing while the air from my lungs disappear.

David places an oxygen mask over my face and continues trying to get me to calm down, but I can’t.

I just can’t.

My eyes flutter close, while my body continues to push the baby out.

“Olivia, stay with me please. You’re crowning, I see the head!” David says, trying to keep me from passing out.

That’s the last thing I hear before the lights go out completely, enveloping me in complete darkness.

“No Olivia!”

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