I was overdue. The midwife, a wonderful girl who visited me at home, presented my options.
"We don't want you to go much more than 2 weeks over. If you haven't delivered by 14 days past the due date we'll induce labour. That would be Monday the 8th."
I didn't want an induced labour. I'd read about them and they didn't sound pretty. I protested.
"OK." she acquiesced,"If you're prepared to come into the hospital daily for monitoring we'll let you go over. We just need to check that the baby's not in distress."
Relief. Permission. Control.
But on the other hand.......
I was pretty sick of being pregnant.
What was that date again? May the 8th. The 50th anniversary of VE Day? That's a pretty cool day to be born on.....
"OK," I agreed, "book me in for the 8th just in case."
Of course the rest is history. I tried every trick in the book but that baby was simply not coming into this world by choice. She needed coaxing; so on the 7th of May I entered hospital and started the 'drugs' and on the 8th of May I was in labour.
The fiftieth anniversary of VE Day was a big deal in the UK. Street parties were planned up and down the country; there were public ceremonies; TV broadcasts; fireworks and a network of beacons to be lighted in a chain around the country at 8.30pm. I wish I knew the significance of that timing.
That morning, with the aid of oxytocin, we went into labour. I missed all the celebration. It was a long day. A very long day. I don't know how those people who supported me made it through that long, boring day but at 8.06pm my tiny and slightly problematic daughter was born. Pre mobile phones, my mother rushed off to call my father. The first public phone she found was out of order so she rushed about finding staff to help her and finally, the call was made to my father at 8.25pm.
Five minutes later, as if to celebrate the arrival of his first grandchild, of my daughter, of the Baby Angel, they lit the beacons.
Want to see some more takes on 'Timing'? Click over to Cheese Party.