“It’s a great way of bonding with the baby but still, if it annoys you I’ll try to stop.”
“Thank God! I still can’t believe you have to go into hospital the day after tomorrow. Shit what will you do?”
“Do what they tell me. I have to get better for you and our baby.”
Ava nodded. “It will be weird here without you, lonely in fact.”
Oscar patted Ava’s hand. “You’ll be fine without me.”
“Yes well, that’s easy enough for you to say!” Oscar ignored her comment.
“I have a consultation with my midwife mid-week so that will take up a few hours.”
“Why didn’t you mention it?”
“It’s rare for Fathers to come to the appointment.”
Oscar nodded. “Fair enough, but you could have told me.”
“It slipped my mind.”
“Please tell me everything.”
“I will, I’ll write it down.”
“Good, what about antenatal classes?”
“Oh them? I really don’t fancy it, they look so boring!”
“How do you know unless you try? Ava I’m not going to lie, if I was in your shoes I would have been going whenever I could!”
“Yes, well I’m not you am I!”
“No, you’re your own person and I respect that. But it wont kill you go to one!”
Ava gritted her teeth. “Okay, one.”
Oscar smiled weakly. “You might really surprise yourself and get a lot out of it.”
“I doubt that very much.”
A tear trickled down Oscar’s cheek. “Oscar? Oscar don’t cry. Treatment is so much more advanced than it used to be, don’t get upset.”
He laughed nervously, wiping away a tear. “Look at me crying like an idiot. I’ll be fine. My emotions seem to be all over the place at the minute! I really want to go for a walk or something, it’s such a beautiful day.”
Ava shook her head. “You’re not well enough, you can barely stand.”
Oscar sighed. “I’ll sit in the back yard for a while.”
“Do you want me to join you?”
“I’ll meet you out there. I’m starving, do you want something to eat?”
Oscar shook his head. “I’m not hungry, but a glass of water would be lovely. I’ll have a quick shower.”
“You haven’t eaten all day! Have something to settle your stomach, I have bread sticks? I really fancy humus. I think I might make myself a little platter.”
“Alright, I’ll try bread sticks.”
“Good, I’ll be out in a minute.”
Oscar showered rapidly and limped slowly into the back garden, appreciating the sun’s gentle beams upon his face. He stood there, tilting his head back, closing his eyes.
“What are you doing?”
“Oh erm, enjoying the sun. Here I’ll do that.” Oscar spread the blanket upon the warm ground.
“Put the water and bread sticks down. I’ll give you a hand to sit down.” He gently held Ava’s hands, ensuring that she was safely seated. He inhaled sharply as his joints smarted as he bent down.
“Are you okay? Do you need painkillers?”
“N-no, I’ll be fine. It’s lovely to be outside in the sun, I need to make the most of it while I can.”
“Your hair is still damp. You look really flushed.”
“It will soon dry, I’m okay.”
He patted Ava’s stomach gently, the foetus kicking in return.
“Wow! That was so strong! Amazing!”
“I felt it! Our child is practically beating me up inside.”
Oscar laughed. “Always the drama queen.”
“Oscar I’m not the one who goes around fainting in hospital corridors.”
Oscar gritted his teeth. “Uncalled for.” He abruptly pulled his hand away, staring in the opposite direction.
“Oscar it was a bit of a joke.”
“Yes, I was joking, but you took it a step further.”
“Alright! Don’t get in a huff with me like some moody teenager!”
“Well at least apologise!”
“Oh okay, fine I’m sorry. We can’t even sit outside without having an argument!”
“No one asked you to sit with me!”
“You agreed to it! I can’t be bothered with you when you’re sat there wallowing in self-pity. Don’t you dare try to drag me down with you.”
“Let’s start again shall we?”
“Oscar, I don’t think you understand how difficult you are to live with at the moment! It’s so draining and stressful!”
“Go inside Ava.”
Oscar rose to his feet, storming inside. An argument was the last thing he wanted, not now, not with this vast amount of pain he was enduring. He needed painkillers and fast. Oscar rooted in the cupboard, stumbling across a packet of ibuprofen. That would have to do, not strong enough, but better than nothing. He swallowed them without water and grasped the banister, stumbling upstairs into his bedroom, seating himself on his bed. Oscar placed a hand to his burning forehead and removed his T-shirt, catching a glimpse of his bruised back in his small mirror.
‘Idiot! Fancy passing out in the middle of the hospital. How embarrassing!’ He thought, as he climbed exhausted into bed.
To be continued…