Today is your birthday and on each one of my daughter’s birthdays I am always remembering – remembering that very special day in our lives.
I had a lot of fun being pregnant with you – in August I was swimming in the ocean off LI (Robert Moses/Fire Island) and I remember one day the lifeguard asked me to please not go in the water – what? He didn’t want to rescue and eight months pregnant woman??? I promised him I wouldn’t body surf . . .
Dad and I were so excited to be having another baby and were looking forward to your birth towards the end of September. Your older sister started nursery school and still no baby! Day after day was going by and nothing was happening so I finally called the doctor because I was now like two weeks overdue – I mentioned this to him and he acts surprised and schedules me to be induced on Oct. 6th – 16 days past your due date!
We got everything scheduled and Dad took me to North Shore University Hospital where everything got started – the mechanics – but not the delivery! Hour after hour went by with nothing really happening and finally the doctor came to talk with us about 2 p.m. and told us he felt he should deliver you by C-Section and then things really started to happen. They asked if they could give me an epidural and I agreed (I later learned when I had April that it must have still been in the experimental stage). One of things I remembered was they asked me to bring my knees up under my chin and I replied that I hadn’t seen my feet in three months let alone my knees (my friends said I looked as though I had the largest beach ball in the world under my shirt – nice).
After they administered the epidural I went into shock – shaking or I should say violently vibrating all over and getting cold and clammy. The nurse came in to wrap me in warm blankets and elevate my feet and I asked her if I was in shock and she wanted to know why I was asking and I told her I had read enough Reader’s Digest articles to know what the symptoms of shock were. She laughed nervously.
They were rolling me down the corridor to the operation room (still vibrating) and I realized that with everything happening I had never even prayed – and I was really concerned how they were going to start the surgery with me shaking all over. I closed my eyes and said, “Jesus,” and whoosh this amazing feeling of peace, calmness and joy just washed over me and the shaking disappeared. I have never forgotten that moment.
The operating room was freezing cold and everyone was ready to start once the guest of honor arrived – they started my pricking my legs asking me if I felt that and I kept saying yes – yes – yes – and my doctor says that he’ll start – and I say something about the fact that I felt all of those and that I was six feet tall and shouldn’t we wait until that numbing stuff takes affect? They started and I mentioned to them that I could feel the surgical knife!!!! I could see their eyes and the doctor said they would wait a moment (I’m sure they put something in the IV to keep me quiet!).
The best part was that I got to see you right after the delivery and all I could say was how beautiful you were – over and over again. You weighed 11 lbs. 14 oz. and you were 23 inches long!!!!! And the doctor had said he wanted to do the C-Section before you got too big!!! HAH!
Everyone loved you in the hospital. The nursery nurses asked Dad to bring in one of his T-shirts as they didn’t have anything big enough for you and anytime I went down to the nursery to see you one of the nurses would be carrying you around. I was breast feeding you and had absolutely no problems though I would let you fall asleep nestled on my shoulder (no I didn’t do rooming in – that would happen soon enough when I got home).
When it was time to go home the doctor gave me instructions not to lift anything over 10 lbs. and I looked at him and said that that would leave Heather out!!! Really!!! Arriving home we began the tradition of the last sibling holding the newest for the first time and how special that was to let Kristen hold her brand new sister - sitting down with lots of pillows around!!!
And now we celebrate Heather – who is so much to so many people -wife, mother, daughter, sister, granddaughter, daughter-in-law, cousin, aunt – involved in church, school, soccer, tennis, bike riding, scrapbooking (that are truly works of art), decorating, mural painting, warm welcoming parties, camping and the list goes on. Heather has the wonderful character quality of friendship and hospitality – she truly knows how to be a really good friend by encouraging, speaking truth in love and always being there for you and combines that with a home that always welcomes you. I have to mention her sense of humor because she was the daughter who called me after having her first baby and said, “Mom, this is the worst baby sitting job I have ever had! The parent’s still haven’t come back!!! What am I going to do?” – I still laugh over that one! And Heather the artist – her imagination, talent and design ability have been proven and when she finds the right direction to go with it all – watch out!
What a blessing to have Heather in our lives – what a blessing to have a daughter whose faith is a real daily walk and who can call me and ask me if she can pray for me. What a precious gift – a daughter, a friend and a kindred spirit.