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ARTS , CULTURE & EDUCATION


and that there was no flights going to Inuvik tonight or tomorrow. It was almost midnight on Monday night, thirty-six hours from my booked flight. I tried to get some sleep. No sleep came.


I went into the RCMP Detachment at 5 a.m. and called my boss. “Sir, I am so sorry to call you so early, but I’m freaking out!” I explained that my wife had gone into labour and could deliver our baby at any moment. My boss told me that he would see what he could do and to stay at the office. He phoned me back in forty-five minutes. Those forty-five minutes felt like hours. “I made some arrangements; the police plane is on the way to pick you up.”


“Babe, the baby is coming.” Time stood still. ...I hung up the phone and began to cry. I could not believe that I was going to miss the birth of my first child.


I felt relieved for the moment, but knew


that it would be hours before they got to the community, and another two hours before I arrived in Inuvik. I went home and packed. I drove out to the airport and began to pace. I began praying that my child would wait for my arrival. The police plane came and picked me


up. Unfortunately, there were three other communities that we had to stop in on the way to Inuvik. My mind was racing. I began to wonder if I would make it to Inuvik in time.


The police plane landed and I was whisked


away to the hospital. I ran into the hospital as fast as I could. I was pointed in the right direction and sprinted down to the hall. A nurse saw me arrive and immediately knew who I was. I was told which room my wife was in, and nothing more. I poked my head into the room, not


knowing what I would see. Would my wife be holding my newborn child? Or had our baby waited for me to get here?


July/August 2011 above & beyond 45 As I looked into the room I saw my


wife’s beautiful smiling face. Our family friend was at her bedside eagerly awaiting my arrival. Our baby had waited for me to arrive. I apologized to my wife for not being there for her. I kissed her head repeatedly. She shrugged it off and told me that she was relieved that I was here. Twenty-four hours later we welcomed


our baby boy to the world. The birth of our son was the most amazing feeling in the world. I was so happy that I made it in time


to welcome him and his squished head to the world.


Being up North comes with sacrifices.


There is the extreme climate, the isolated communities, and being far away from family and friends. But, at the end of the day I will take it. In twenty years when my boy is grown


up and my wife and I are old and grey, we will joke about this story. I have no doubt that our time up North will be our fondest memories of all!


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