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- Challenge Response
Garcia was starting to believe that this baby was a seasonal nightmare. It started out as a late Valentine’s dinner with Morgan, that turned into a fabulous night of lovemaking. Announced on April first, she just knew the home test must be wrong. Memorial Day honored those who gave their lives for our country and an end of morning sickness. The fourth of July may have marked America’s independence, but for poor Penelope, it was the start of a dependence on the bathroom being close. When Labor Day arrived, she was tired of being hot and sweaty daily. Yet, the only thing that occurred was a healthy change in appetite. October at least brought cooler weather. The large round belly she was sporting just had to be dressed in orange for Halloween. She even made stick on jack o lantern face parts, which she allowed people to rearrange all day. That was the last laugh, she swore up and down, she couldn’t get comfortable standing, lying, or sitting down. Although she was thankful for all that she had, the Thanksgiving feast just made her uncomfortable and sad and bigger than the turkey.
There would be no celebration of the winter solstice, this year for that day would be filled with the care of the new little Garcia. With a due date of the Fourteenth, surely everyone would understand the lack of Christmas cookies for one year. Morgan “the tap dance king”, had learned when to avoid Penelope and when to be handy. His December had been spent so far at the baby store, at Garcia’s, back to the baby store, assemblies and disassembly’s of cribs, changing tables, and dressers for little Morgan-Garcia. He had a permanent crick in his back from her couch. He found himself praying for an early delivery, just so this would all stop. Even though he just really wanted the lovely Miss P to be happy.
As her due date grew nigh, came and went, the tears began to flow. Hotch and JJ tried to explain that first babies are difficult to predict the due date of. The snotty reply of “sure miss early labor and Mr. Preeclampsia, real easy and early for you two. You’re not up to pee every few hours, just as soon as you get comfortable!”
She wanted to take it back as soon as she said it and waddled from the room in tears. Spencer tried to cheer her up with an office pool on the actual arrival date, weight, gender. Which was doing well until she saw his guess of December twenty-first. The tears started again. It took Morgan, Hotch, and Dave to calm her down. They banished Spencer from the office for the rest of the day.
Morgan offered to get the car on a snowy cold December Fourteenth. She could stay in the warm doctor’s office and hopefully calm down. Morgan called ahead to Hotch to warn him.
“The doctor tried to explain they won’t do a c-section for two more weeks. That a late first pregnancy is normal, but I swear if she could’ve reached the doctor, that she would’ve performed one on him right then and there.”
Morgan took the long way home to Garcia’s. The surprise baby shower took her mind off of it until she tried to get comfortable in bed that night. Morgan crawled into bed with her to help give her some back support. After he rubbed her back, that place where the baby just loves to lay and kick then push on the bladder, that hasn’t had any relief in months. He finally let out a sigh when he heard her breathing relax into a sleepy rhythm.
On the first day past my due date, my true friends gave to me, a still very testy very pregnant Penelope. Then came the fifteenth of December and the second gift of overdue pregnancy that my “lovely” fetus gave to me. Two huge swollen feet. On the third day overdue, my body gave me false hope with Braxton-hicks contractions, and I cried myself to sleep til December seventeenth.
Doctor visit what seemed like number two hundred and eighty-three.
Penelope yelled, “Get this baby out of me.”
She threatened to have his last four years of taxes audited if he does something soon. Plus she guaranteed, never a refund in sight. The team felt so bad, but no one had a cure. They all wished her well as she headed out the door.
On the nineteenth of December, Penelope said to we, “screw it all. I’m going on maternity leave. My clothes no longer fit me. My shoes are too small. It hurts to sit, stand, lay, and I’ve had a system-wide crash.”
“You know where to find me. I’ll call if things change. I have things to finish knitting and a baby to name “
They tried to honor her request for non-interference. It lasted an entire day. Then Spencer brought spicy foods, that he had read brought on labor. It’s all fun and games till it’s even more fun. Prentiss slipped her some cod liver oil, after all her research said that would bring on contractions. All it accomplished was a December the twentieth spent in her bathroom.
December twenty-first the solstice did arrive. Derek kindly offered to take her for a ride. She could enjoy the day that was special to her. If it kept her distracted, then that would be great too. They stopped for a snack. They enjoyed the weather and headed back. There was a bumpity bumpity bumpity bump. Derek pulled over and opened the trunk. The afternoon sky began to turn gray, just about when the tire was changed half way. Penelope felt bad from her back to her front. She dare not complain when the cold rain came down. Derek was drenched when he got back in the car.
There was no towel to dry him off. She started to cry as another pain came through. What was she to do?
“Derek can you please take me to the hospital now? I’m in such pain and I don’t know why? I’d rather get you warm and dry.”
Without a sound, a care, or a worry, Derek flipped the lights and sirens on and hurried. They arrived to the sound of Derek’s deep bellow. “Pregnant woman here, help a fellow.” He laid her on a gurney and made a call to Hotch. A young nurse brought him scrubs as he hung up. The nurse led him back to Penelope.
“Breathe, hold, push, no not yet”
The doctor’s orders all blurred together. The silence was so loud. As everyone waited for a sweet solo to be sung out to the birthing room crowd.
Then a ruckus roar. Twas a Christmas melody sung this winter solstice, life continues once more.
The word was passed unto all good people in the hall.
Peace on Earth from baby girl Garcia, Noelle.
Profilers for Christmas is an anonymous crime drama Advent Calendar featuring both art and stories. Additional information about the challenge can be found here.