There are some things that I remember from October 21. Things that mom’s do not typically forget. The first was of course that First Daughter was born.
Though actually it is the first thing I recall of that day, it is not the first “thing” that day.
The first “thing” was waking up to severe back pain. But I had been experiencing this severe pain for a couple of weeks or longer. It was so bad I was losing weight while being 9 months pregnant. I could not sit still, stand still or lay still. It hurt. I would sit down, it would be okay for a few minutes and I would have to move. So I moved. More so than any other time of my life up to that point. I made myself two over-easy eggs. Toast. I had a doctor’s appointment later in the day. I figured I would be having this baby soon. I was convinced it was a boy. The doctor had guessed a girl.
I had to ride to the doctor appointment on my knees facing the back of the car because I could not sit down with the back pain. The doctor says “let’s admit you. I’ll come over after the office closes. We’ll have this baby today.” I appreciated his effort at taking some of the responsibility of having this baby. Though “we” did not share in the pain. But that’s okay because the pain is part of the love that was in my life for this baby. No one else had the joy of this pain just for her. I would do it again.
I go to the hospital, conveniently next door to his office building. Though I had been preparing for 9 months I was quite unprepared for this experience. It felt like the wait had lasted forEVER and yet…. now it’s here. I would have gladly gotten up and said “yeah well, let’s put this off a week or so”. Because NOW is the moment. NOW is reality. This baby is going to depend on me for EVERYTHING. FOR EVER. OH MY GOD.
Doctor comes in after he closes the office, and by the way, he is a beautiful man. Beautiful. Anyway, he checks on me. Leaves. Comes back. Leaves. The nurse hooks up all of the monitors and shows me how to read the monitor. Look here, says she, when this line goes up you are having a contraction. She was not happy with me when I told her to turn it around – HAVING the contraction was enough, I did not need to see it also. She really did not understand that. I’m not sure why she thought I would not be aware of the contraction. I did not have any drugs in me. No epidural. Just pure and simple PAIN. I think I got it. When it hurt, I was having a contraction.
Though even without the pain medicine I was passing out between contractions. Kind of. Not totally. I was still aware of her dad sitting there eating Lays potato chips and drinking Coke while I was in labor. And he was watching tv. But in all fairness to him doing those things, what else, exactly, could he have been doing. (Note-sarcasm is sometimes appropriate).
Around 11 pm Doctor comes back in. We go to have a baby. I have the baby at 11:18 pm, and passed out very briefly. When I came to the nurses were gathered around her doing the clean up and measuring. There was comfort in coming to, with the nurses all gathered around the baby and laughing. Happy laughing. They took joy in that baby. They took joy in her health and her happiness. Baby of Mine was the happiest baby from the get go. Finally after what seemed like another 9 months of waiting…..
They bring her back to me.
I can not describe this moment. So I will let it be, between me and my baby.
Now I am a mom. What was God thinking? Oh Yes we have free will, so…. okay…. what was I thinking? How do I do this? Oh is she incredible or what? Okay, like everything else we do, we do this one day at a time. That’s why God only gives us one day to live, at a time. So that was my plan. I can do it that way.
A nurse comes in the next day. What are you going to name her? I do not know. We had had a name picked out but due to a sad and tragic event in someone else’s life we do not use that name. She said her grand daughter was just born in Texas and they named her XXXXXXXX. And she left. I looked at the baby. My baby. And there was First Daughter wearing her new little name.
We bring her home. And one day at a time I take care of her. It’s the best I could do. I think I did okay. I think she did okay. I think she is great.
Daughter was born. My mom life began. It is always the first thing, and the best thing, I remember for this day.
Next Daughter was still a few years away but I’ll save that story for her day.