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Life, viewed sideways. Emotions, amplified. Answers, questioned. Me, between the lines.

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"From this hour I ordain myself loos'd of limits and imaginary lines, going where I list, my own master total and absolute, Listening to others, considering well what they say, Pausing, searching, receiving, contemplating, Gently, but with undeniable will, divesting myself of the holds that would hold me."

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Wednesday, February 16, 2005

Baby Day

Function: noun
Etymology: Middle English destinee, from Middle French, from feminine of destiné, past participle of destiner
1 : something to which a person or thing is destined : FORTUNE
2 : a predetermined course of events often held to be an irresistible power or agency
3 : what took control Sunday morning

It's Tuesday, and I just bought a Sunday paper. But I'm not going to read it. I'll pack it safely away for eighteen years, maybe twenty one, for a birthday present.

Why? Because on Sunday, my daughter Jessica gave birth to my grandson. And, when we look at how it happened, God's fingerprints were all over it.

It started early Sunday morning. Her due date was actually last week, and the doctor had told her that if she didn't go into labor naturally, he would induce labor the next Tuesday or Wednesday.

But on Sunday, she awakened with a sore throat. Her husband had a flu or something, and she didn't want to gamble this close to delivery, so she went to one of those "doc's on a corner" places.

They looked at her stomach and sent her straight to the emergency room.

This is how I understand what happened next.

When they got there, the ER curtly sent her straight to labor and delivery. When she got there, they gave her a rough exam, and she went into pre-labor as a result.

They hooked her up, and the baby's heart rate started dropping.

An ultrasound was done, and the baby's umbilical cord was wrapped around its neck.

This was when they began talking C-section. When they told her that, first of all, the baby was at risk with a regular delivery and a cord wrapped around its neck, and second, the survival rate was twice as good for a baby delivered by C-section, she decided quickly to go that route.

In the meantime, her natural father, my wife's ex-husband, is in the hospital in Florida thinking he has prostate cancer. They come in and tell him that no, its not prostate cancer, but another cancer that is reasonably easily treated. He calls his daughter, my stepdaughter (who I have been referring to here as my daughter, just to make matters confusing), and tells her the news, and she tells him her own news.

Then he calls his son, my stepson, and tell him both things.

After that, my stepson calls us and says "Did you know Jessica is in the hospital getting ready to have a C-section?"

My wife was out the door in a heartbeat.

Now, I figured we would have a bit of time, so I shower, get dressed, etc. That's when my son in law calls and tells me that all this is happening. I thank him and assure him I'm on my way. He will be quite surprised when my wife walks in 90 seconds later.

So, I get to the hospital, get into her room, have just enough time to say I love her and I'm praying for her before they take her. And off she goes, scared, excited, hurting, a bucketful of emotions. Understandably.

Only about 45 minutes pass until she is back in the room with a very healthy brand new squaling baby boy. Which she immediately tries to hand to her husband saying "Make it stop crying!"

When the doc drops by, we discover there had been a further, unknown complication. Apparently, the baby had what they referred to as a "true knot" in the cord, as well as having it tied around his neck. The doc said it was a knot like a pretzel. If it had been delivered normally, it may well have died in the process.

So, my daughter's timely sore throat in fact probably saved the baby's life.

There is a slight down side of the story. I wish I could say that the baby had been named Charles or Steven or, heaven forbid, Cliff. But no.

They've named the kid "Magnvs." And no, I didn't misspell that. The middle name is "Cash" which is a sight better.

Ouch. Poor kid. Could have been worse though. My daughter's last name is Weaver, and the first name they picked out was Beau.

I mentioned in a previous post how the baby and I made an almost electric connection, at great surprise to me. Perhaps I should give you a bit of background so you will understand that.

First of all, as far as I am aware, I have no natural children. If you've been reading this blog for a while, you'll understand the caveat. But if there are any kids, they are plenty old enough to have found me, and I've made myself easy to find, so I think that there aren't any.

That means that, as far as my line goes, I'm the period on 7,000 years of human history. It dies with me.

It also means that I have never really been around a pregnant girl, or a newborn baby to any degree.

My stepson was ten when I met their mom. Jessica was only two. As far as she is concerned, I'm the dad in her life. And she is the daughter in mine. Same with her brother, of course, but there wasn't the amount of time involved.

I taught her how to ride a bike. I was there when she rode in a horse show. I was there when she took tap dancing lessons. I saw her grow from a little clumsy kid to a graceful beautiful successful woman, and now mother.

In short, this baby is, in a very real way, the only one ever that has been in any way "mine."

Up until now, I have been baffled around babies. I have only held a baby one time, immediately following someone spilling something and saying "Dammit, hold this..." So that's my baby experience.

I'm gonna get more.

But at this point, the father hasn't left her side since they arrived at the hospital two days ago, and when they left to go home today, he still was right beside her.

If I'm gonna hold that baby, I'm gonna have to have a reservation.

And that is the way it should be.

Tonight I realized I was showing everyone around me his picture on my Palm Pilot. Surely anyone would want to see him? How grandfather is that!

My friends gave me some really nice presents too, a book to read to him, a book for ME to read, a baby calendar/book, and a card that read "Remember, diaper spelled backwards is REPAID."

Yep, there's justice in the world.

Anyways, we'll shower that kid with love from now on, just like we do our other grandkids. It will be neat watching him grow up.

But I may call him "MC."

Babies are such a nice way to start people.
~Don Herrold

Permalink: 2/16/2005 01:17:00 AM |
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