Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Flying leaf

Eighteen years ago tonight my wife and I were in the hospital, awaiting the birth of our first child. The fact that he was dead did not make the event any less auspicious.

There were many details that Toni did not experience, as she was bed-bound with preeclampsia, and anyway she was operating on a different frequency of observation than I was. But I did have freedom of movement and saw the world just outside of her room and beyond.

One feature that I barely noticed on the first few passes was the photo of a floating leaf with a single drop on it, it was taped to the door. The room adjacent to ours also had one.

I wondered about it but did not think to ask. It was later that I learned that hospitals post this picture specifically to alert anyone entering that the woman inside has lost a child.

The was one moment when I was leaving this room as a man around my age was entering the room next to ours. We made eye contact. There was a moment of realization. We both looked away.

Our leaf picture was upside down. I think this was just carelessness on the part of whoever tacked it up. But I like to remember it that way, because it was as though it was suspended in air, flying.

Eighteen years.

"I Hate This (a play without the baby)" is available at Amazon as paperback or ebook.

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