We’re caught up in a new summer entertainment at our house. Like a Hollywood movie, it has a little bit of everything. Drama! Comedy! Action! Romance! Medical people doing medical things! And, potentially, lots of swearing – all set against a sunny summer backdrop.
No, it’s not Baywatch, the movie my husband and I saw earlier this summer (two hours of our life we’ll never get back). In our family, it’s more like Babywatch.
Yes, our son and daughter-in-law are at that stage in pregnancy where the baby’s been gestating for nine months, but it feels more like ten. Mom is so full of baby that she can’t see her feet and her lap is a distant memory. Our two-year-old granddaughter has accepted this new state of affairs regarding her mother’s altered shape with aplomb. But the child has no idea about the earth-shaking effects of the Category 5 Baby Hurricane that’s lurking just offshore and is about to make landfall right in the middle of her living room.
Our story has plenty of suspense, too, not to mention false alarms. For a grandparent, there’s nothing like getting a 2 a.m. phone call and driving through the dead of night to be at your son’s place so he can take his wife to the hospital without disturbing their other child. (“Let sleeping grandchildren lie” seems like a wise policy.)
It’s exciting, even thrilling, to be right on the cusp of a birth. But in this case, seeing the parents come back home disappointed after a couple of hours was definitely a low point.
While this story unspools in real time we’re all on full alert, ready to spring into action at a moment’s notice, night or day. And the baby, I believe, is enjoying the attention, toying with us, when he’s not busy drumming on his mother’s ribcage with his feet or seeing how far he can push out her belly button.
In our Babywatch tale, there are no ocean waves, sandy beaches, or surfboards, much less a bare-chested David Hasselhoff (for fans of the TV series) or a bare-chested Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson (star of the current movie). There are no babes in bikinis, either, though there will be at least one babe in scanty clothing later on.
Like this summer’s movie, our version will probably have a few gross-out scenes, either in the delivery room or when the baby starts getting accustomed to using a diaper. And is it a coincidence that my daughter-in-law recently wound up with Zac Efron, who’s also starring in the movie, as her obstetrician in a Mad Libs baby shower game?
Much as I felt when watching the movie, I’m sure I’ll be relieved when our Babywatch is over. Unlike our film experience, our happy ending will arrive not with an empty bag of popcorn but with a wriggling, precious prize, like the best box of Cracker Jack ever.
And we can’t wait!
Art courtesy of Wikimedia Commons and Pixabay