My oldest child’s birthday is tomorrow and I will then officially have a teenager in the house.
“Is there anything special you want to do?” I asked her this morning. She shrugged her shoulder in a very grown up way and pushed her blonde hair away from her blue eyes, “Six flags?”
Yep…ANOTHER sign. The girls are pining for – water – the ocean. Daughters # 1 and #2 were both born on Cape Cod. On the day Daughter #1 was born, I looked out the window of my hospital room. It overlooked the water and even though it was a typical New England winter day, a couple of boats were tied to the pier. The golden sun glittered off the rippling water and it was a bit hard to tell what the temperature actually WAS outside.
When Daughter #2 was born, my room again overlooked the water, but it was summer this time, and fun-looking relaxed people sunned themselves on their boats and I clearly remember a champagne toast at sunset that evening in late August. This time the sun reflected off fine crystal and shattered into a million different pieces on deck.
Daughter #3 was born in one of the finest hospitals here in the area, on a day that had something to do with baseball. Playoffs? I clearly remember vying for attention from the hospital staff. They were riveted to the TV and I was screaming that my epidural was NOT working. The medical team cheered.
Daughter #4 was born with the sounds of hooves striking the fertile Saratoga soil…literal stomping grounds of the most beautiful, elegant animals that grace these rolling hills and that define Saratoga County.
And then, there’s Daughter #5. The one who looks like Shirley Temple and acts like Dennis the Menace. Aside from Daughter #4, all my girls were born about 2 weeks late. So, when my due date came and went, I thought nothing of it. Roughly 10 days later, I was feeling fidgety and restless – surely a warm, relaxing bath would help. The girls were busy with schoolwork and I settled into a deliciously warm lavender bath with a magazine. About half an hour later, I began feeling cramps…prob a good sign I should get out of the tub. They got worse and I FINALLY called my doctor, assuring them that I would get to their office immediately. Immediately after I blow dried my hair, curled it and put my face on. And then I would drive myself – 55 minutes away. The nurse at my doctor’s office laughed at me and asked who else was in the house with me. That’s when the REAL contractions set in, unable to catch my breath I handed the phone to my then 10 year old daughter, and sank to the bathroom floor.
She calmly took the phone and explained that we were the only ones in the house. One woman in labor and 4 little children. The fabulous nurse on the other phone coordinated a phone call between 911 and my daughter who faced delivering her baby sister in the bathroom. There was NO WAY I could even take a single step. I was NOT leaving that bathroom.
Everything after that is pretty much a blur. The baby came out perfectly fine, seconds after my husband came home and caught the baby’s head before it hit the bathroom tile. And my favorite memory is hearing the EMS say, as they administered smelling salts to my husband who was now laying passed out a few feet away from me, “Sir? Sir???!!! Are YOU alright?”
Daughter #1 was the first the hold the baby. And she was completely grossed out because she had grabbed her most favorite blanket to catch the baby in and it was looking anything but “fresh” now. Later, in the hospital, she begged to have me throw it away. Today, it’s one of her most prized possessions. The bond between my oldest and my youngest is truly beautiful.
This move to Myrtle Beach is very similar to this birth. It’s a brand new experience and we will all enjoy each second of this new phase of our lives. This milestone that we are about to embark on is simply another one of God’s wonders…he’s opening up another door for us.