Things Noticed in a Hospital Waiting Room

Labor and delivery, floor 3. The doors are locked. You push a button and say, ‘I’m here to see a patient,” then they buzz you in. Seemed like a fallible system.

Somewhere in between 2-7 PM as I waited for a baby to be born, I listened. Three new grandmothers stood in the middle of the floor. They had the same haircut that seemed to be popular with older women. Short bob.

One: short and stout with colored brown hair and blond highlights. Or was it blonde with brown highlights? The colors were so intermingled that it’s hard to decide. Her grandson had been born forty-five minutes ago. One push and two whole minutes was all it took, she said. Beaming, proud–almost bragging.

Two: the tallest with her bob in simple brown. She had a new grandson, too, except he was early. Born four pounds early. He’s doing great though, she said. He’s strong, a fighter. Adorable even so small. He’ll be out of the hospital in a few weeks.

Three: the face of everyone’s grandmother with her bob in her natural grey. The grandmother on the other side of the premature. His name is Alexander Walker, she said. They were going to name him Bowen, but they moved it to the middle.

They proudly gave the weight and height of each baby. Talked about how precious each boy was. How good the newborns were–hardly even cried. They sounded like the same model grandmother, with only differing looks.

Later, I met my beat friend’s baby. A boy, too. I asked, ‘how long did you push?’ ‘how much does he weigh?’ They answered and even mentioned how good of a baby he was–hardly even cried. He was adorable all wrapped up, just the cutest.

Then I laughed at myself and wondered what was it about babies that made people become the same person. We all became those grandmothers and it’s only a matter of time before we decide to don the same hair cut.

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