A Million Little Things‘ Maggie is gung-ho about having her baby at home… until something happens during Wednesday’s episode that seriously shakes her confidence in a non-hospital birth.
Claire and Evan, the couple we met at the birthing class in the previous episode, have dinner at Gary and Maggie’s. Gary can’t believe that their new friends are so into the idea of home birth, and he’s even more bothered when Maggie mentions again that she wants to explore the concept, too. But he agrees to meet with a midwife (played by Lauren Lapkus, Good Girls, Orange Is the New Black)… then peppers her with questions about other home-birth hazards and is pretty rude, overall.
After she leaves, Maggie angrily explains that, given their shared experience with cancer, she associates hospitals with sickness and fear. “I don’t want to be anywhere near that when we bring our son into the world,” she says. “Our baby is being born in a hospital, period,” Gary says, putting his foot down. (You can imagine how that goes.)
Gary meets with their fertility doctor, who counsels him that “the safest way to give birth is whatever makes the mom most comfortable.” So he comes home, chagrined… to find Maggie crying: Claire went into labor at home and something went wrong, and she had to be taken to the hospital for surgery. They later find out that everything went fine, and agree to keep discussing the situation. But they might want to hurry up: While they’re in bad later that night, Maggie wakes with what she thinks are contractions. Has labor begun?
Here’s what else happens in Episode 5, which was directed by Romany Malco:
* At the homeless encampment, Dustin tells Regina that he got fired and evicted; his daughter, Daniela, is living at his mother’s. He says all the shelters are full, but adds that Regina doesn’t need to worry about him: “I’m going to dig myself out of this. I just need some time.” When she eventually gets him a spot in a shelter, he turns her down coldly. And she doesn’t understand… until she realizes that Daniela is, in reality, living in his truck with him. He explains that he won’t seek shelter care for them because then Child Protective Services will intervene, and he doesn’t want to lose his kid to the foster system. So Regina uses some of her airline miles to get Dustin and Daniela a bunch of nights at a hotel, and he’s grateful.
* Greta helps Carter cover up the name tattooed on his bicep — which we learn belongs to the man to whom he was married for six days, years ago. She changes the name, “Don,” to “freedom.” Later that night, Theo says “Love you guys” to his mom and her girlfriend, which marks the first time he’s expressed the sentiment to Greta.
* Walter moves in with Rome and Regina. Sophie stays with him while Rome and Regina are out and about. Though he’s initially resistant to having someone hang out with him, they bond over their shared love of Otis Redding. Then he gives her advice about her love life. Later, when Walter doesn’t remember that his wife has passed, Sophie tells Rome that it’s often better not to correct dementia patients and instead roll with whatever they say. Before bed, Walter tearfully admits that he doesn’t want to sleep over because he’s afraid of waking up and not knowing where he is. So Rome says they’ll hang some of his photos to make the room feel less alien, and that comforts the older man.
* Eddie is poised to start his college career but can’t get into the behavioral psych class he needs for his major. However, Nicole — the woman who was fleeing her violent husband the night she hit Eddie with her car, and whom Eddie helped find an apartment — is working in the registrar’s office and does him a solid by getting him into the at-capacity class. The professor is kind of a jerk. He swings by her office afterward to apologize for getting off on the wrong foot, and she harshly suggests that he drop the class. Later, he’s about to fill out the drop form, but he thinks about Theo being proud of him and throws away the paper.
Now it’s your turn. What did you think of the episode? Sound off in the comments!