…so how lucky is Joff to be born on the 8/8? I don’t know if there is such a thing as luck but we know that was a fortunate day indeed for Team Effie when Joff arrived.

When I had Miss Effie Senior, I had a minor complication at the end of the pregnancy which meant that the doctor wanted to induce her. From the start of my first labour I was doped up to the sky with pethidine, then was advised to have an epidural and had gas and air to hand…though to be fair I was so relaxed from the epidural I was just playing with the gas and air.

That first labour was 22 hours long and I slept through almost all of it. Utterly useless was the “mix tape” I made to get me through the experience and Mr Effie was frightened to leave the delivery room in case he missed something and spent the day mostly pretty bored and very hungry. I genuinely didn’t feel a contraction that first time so when Joff made it known he was on his way at 2am on the morning of the 8/8 it was a big shock to my system.

We made our way to the hospital, me in my maternity nightie, leaving Miss Effie senior with her gran and granddad. Mr Effie stopped in at an all-night garage. I was both confused, as I knew we’d have ample petrol to get us there and yowling each time a contraction came. It struck me as particularly funny that the garage’s CCTV would see me writhing about in the passenger seat with “Let Me Out” on the front of the nightie, waiting for Mr Effie to come back to the car.

Mr Effie had stopped to get a prawn sandwich. No way was he going to be hungry this time!

So we went up to the labour suite and the contractions continued. I asked for and was given an epidural again which was smashing. Just after 9 in the morning and nothing much was happening, Mr Effie decided to risk walking to the local bookies. Nope, he wasn’t going to place a bet, but going to tell my younger sister, who was working as a cashier there, that I was in labour with the bold Joff. However, neither of us knew that the shop didn’t open till 10am so on finding that out, he turned round right away to return to the hospital.

Meantime, Joff’s heartbeat had dropped a bit, giving the medical staff cause for concern. They monitored us closely for a short time then made the decision to use forceps to deliver him right away.

Uh oh! No Mr Effie!

I asked the midwife to look out for Mr Effie returning from the bookies. My legs were put up into the stirrups, and I was getting increasingly anxious that he’d miss the birth. The midwife peeked out into the corridor and asked, what does he look like?

Oh, says I, he’s a wee guy, dark hair, jeans and a t-shirt.

Hen…. she says, deadpan,…. that’s hauf the population of Glesga.

But ta-dah! In he strode just at the right time to see bonny Joff enter the world. The baby’s head was misshapen from the forceps and he had a huge bruise on the side of his head/eye but he was alive and he was here!

And the prawn sandwich was spot on too.