Those were the words I'd written to myself.
Scrawn on a sheet of paper,
decorated with multi-coloured stars and circles.
I stuck the paper on the wall and stared at it
as I counted each contraction.
Dancing in the kitchen while your father held my waist.
Climbing stairs in our building
and dropping into a squat at the top.
Twerking on the sofa with Missy Elliott
playing in the background.
All so I could see you sooner.
But it seemed the joke was on me.
Why wouldn't it be?
After a second time sent home from hospital
I was ready to pull you out myself.
The pain got stronger.
A shift in my body said I should call again.
"Well," said the midwife, "do you want to come in?"
"Either that or I birth my child on the bathroom floor," I rolled my eyes.
My waters broke in the back of the car.
I felt your head descend,
my body break open.
That infamous ring of fire that we so often hear about.
Your father equated it to a scene from ER
as the midwives rushed to the entrance of the centre.
"Give me the fucking drugs!" he remembers me saying.
I was still mounted on the wheelchair
when she pulled down my trousers.
Just one more exhale,
and there you were in my knickers.