The nurse approached him, smiling. "The labor is going
great," she said. "Wouldn't you like to come in?"
"Oh, no." The man shook his head.
The nurse returned to the mother's side, and the labor
progressed smoothly. As the birth neared, the nurse returned to
the man, now pacing frantically in the hall. "She's doing so
well," she assured him. "Wouldn't you like to at least come in
and see her?"
The man seemed to hesitate slightly, then shook his head
again. "No, no, I couldn't do that." He jingled car keys in his
sweaty palm and resumed his pacing.
The nurse went back into the room and coached Mom's valiant
efforts in pushing the baby into the world. As the baby's head
began to exit the birth canal, the nurse raced to the hall,
grabbed the man by his elbow, and dragged him to the bedside
saying, "You have got to see this!"
At that very moment, the baby boy was born and placed on the
tummy of the mother whose radiant smile shone through her tears.
The man began to cry openly. Turning to the nurse, he sobbed.
"You were right! This is the greatest moment in my life!"
By now, the nurse, too, was tearful. She put her arm around
him, and he rested his head on her shoulder. She soothed, "No one
should miss the birth of their son."
"This isn't my son," the man blubbered. "This isn't even my
wife. I've never seen her before in my life. I was just bringing
the car keys to my buddy across the hall!"