Saturday, January 17, 2009
Thirty-seven years ago on January 17, I went into labor. I had taken a bath and noticed I couldn't get completely dry--a bad thing in our chilly little rented house in mid-January! However, the reason was that my water broke, not in a gush like the first time, but in a quiet little ongoing trickle.
Well, the roommate came home from work--he worked nights; what fun--and said very calmly, "We're going to town. We'll stay at Mom's." We, you see, lived 13 miles from the hospital. His mother's house, on the other hand, was a only few blocks and absolutely no train tracks away. So we packed up Chris, the sleeping two-year-old, and my three new nightgowns and went to town. Chris and the roommate promptly fell asleep while I...didn't.
Several hours later, when things were only a few minutes apart, I shook the roommate. "Hey," I said, "it's time."
"Uh-huh." Pat, pat, pat on my huge stomach. "I love you, too, honey." Pat, pat, pat.
"Now, I think," I said, and then not so calmly. "We need to GO."
Several hours later, a nurse said, "Hmm..." and then the doctor came in and said, "Hmm..." and I said, "WHAT?" and the roommate said...oh, who knew what he said? I wanted to know what "...hmm..." meant.
What it meant was, for the second time, I was going to have a breech delivery. In case you've never had one, it's a whole lot like parking a schoolbus in a one-car garage. (I know this isn't a real good analogy, but just as I was 37 years ago tonight, I'm tired.) Like the mature adult I was (I was, after all, 21), I wailed, "I want a caesarean!" The doctor agreed, since I wasn't very dilated and there was plenty of time. The roommate breathed a sigh of relief, and a surgical team was hastily assembled. But we never made it to the operating room, there wasn't any need for surgery, because...
Fifteen minutes later...
Awkwardly and noisily, weighing just a little over six pounds, Kari Christine Flaherty came into the world in her own way and her own time. It was one of the very happiest days of my life and of the roommate's life, too. Chris is still reserving judgment, but he did give up on asking us to send her back.
Now she's married to Jim, has three boys of her own (ALL of them born by caeserean; what a wimp!) and is a Special Ed. teacher. She's given us many, many more happy days since that first one, not to mention a few anxious ones.
Happy Birthday, Kari. We love you.
posted by Liz Flaherty # 8:26 PM
What a wonderful blog. Of course, you have great material to work with here!
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