Ten years ago today you were born. I remember it so clearly. I remember the start of labor pains on the night of August 19, 1998. I remember not wanting to be in the hospital any longer than necessary. I decided to tough it out as long as I could at home. It hurt. A lot. Your father and I began timing the contractions. Once they were five minutes apart, we called the doctor. He told us to head on over to the hospital. We dropped your sister off at the babysitter’s house. We didn’t want her to be there because we were afraid it would scare her. On the way to the hospital your father jokingly asked me if I wanted to stop and have a beer. The icy cold stare I gave him was answer enough. I was really hurting by this time and his feeble attempt at humor did not amuse me. We pulled up in front of the hospital. Your dad dropped me off at the front door and parked the car.
As soon as I walked through the doors of the hospital, my water broke. It was nothing like what I have always seen on TV. They always show this big puddle of fluid pooling at your feet. In reality, it was more like a trickle. As a matter of fact, I almost wondered if I had peed my pants. Off we went to the maternity floor to check in. A test confirmed that my water had indeed broken, albeit with very little drama.
The pain was escalating now and I was pretty miserable. My best friend arrived to witness your grand entrance. While I struggled with the most horrible pain I have ever had the misfortune to bear, your dad seemed blissfully unaware. That was OK. His time would come. Finally, the time had come to administer the epidural. I was so relieved. I have a very low threshold for pain, and I was more than ready. The doctor came in and gave your dad instructions to hold my hands to keep them steady. He said that I needed to be very still and I was shaking and cold.
Your dad took my hands and stared into my eyes. It was a beautiful few seconds before his faced turned green, his eyes rolled back in his head, and he passed out. I thought he was having a seizure and began crying and demanding to know what was wrong with him. The nurses assured me that he had only passed out and would be fine. Upon being revived, he informed everyone that he was, “only taking a nap”. Thankfully my BFF stepped in and took his place while I got the epidural. Oh the joy! Even though my entire pregnancy had been wrought with one pain after another, the rest of the birth was surprisingly easy, once I got the good drugs of course. At 6:10 a.m. on the morning of August 20, 1998 you very easily made your grand entrance to the world. A few pushes and some mild pain and you were here. Weighing in at 8 lbs 14oz, you were the biggest newborn I had ever seen. You immediately put your whole hand in your mouth and began sucking. That was to be a sign that you would forevermore be a bottomless pit, able to eat more quantities of food than I could have ever imagined. From the time we got to the hospital until your birth it was six hours. Thank you for not taking hours, and hours, I will always be grateful.
You had your father’s hands and chubby little cheeks. How I marveled over your dimples and fat rolls. I loved them and thought they were the cutest things I had ever seen. I was so happy to have another little girl to love. Thank you Keri for joining our family and being my little girl.