Today is the birthday of my second son…yes, just the day after his dad’s. Not only is that CRAZY for me each year, but his entrance into this world is the craziest of all my children…so I thought it’d be fun to share that story today, on his 10th and GOLDEN birthday.
We had just moved to Texas from Delaware, where my husband had finished his Masters Degree, and we were entering the work force. Though we put feelers out in states such as Washington, Oregon, even the East Coast, we figured it was best to live close to one of our families to eliminate a lot of travel to and from….and Texas was MUCH cheaper to live than California.
We bunked with my parents for a few weeks in Houston (my hometown) while my husband got licensing in the state, and our young 22 month old toddler had a blast being doted on by his uncle and grandparents. He didn’t realize his life was about to change in so many ways.
When we finally got everything situated, we moved into our Austin apartment at the end of September, 2002. We didn’t know hardly anyone in the area, but we contacted our church congregation leaders, and they sent over 10 men (volunteers) to help us unpack our moving truck to our third floor apartment. I could never begin to express the gratitude for men willing to help move…we’ve used that resource a few times, and I gladly send my husband to help others when it is time for us to serve instead of receive.
We met dear, lasting friends that day. I was a full 8 months pregnant, and had a good month to go. My oldest came the week he was due, so I expected the same for my #2. I had seen a doctor in Delaware, went to a transitional doctor in Houston, and when we knew we were moving to Austin, I called weeks in advance to secure a doctor in the area.
My husband started work on October 3rd, and fortunately, we were covered for insurance on the day he started. On October 6th, when I reported to the doctor I had called ahead to, they didn’t like that I had no insurance card to present. I explained that my husband just started work, and here was the number to call to get the information. After several phone calls and my waiting in the waiting area, I was told that we were not “in the system” and that I’d have to reschedule. Reschedule? I was 8 months pregnant… I needed to be seen each week… I called ahead…we are covered. I asked if I could just pay out of pocket for the visit, and they say no.
I left the office crying near hysterically. How could I not be seen? I did everything right. After phone calls to my hubby, the insurance, and back at the doctors office, by the next day I had a new appointment, but it was for a few days later–October 10th.
On the 8th, we had a tour of the hospital so we’d know what to do, when we needed to. On the 9th, my hubby had a birthday. I wanted to have a little party for him, so I invited 2 families that we had just met that their husbands helped us move in: The Lowes & The Hobsons, along with my older brothers best friend and his wife that lived fairly close by: The Hardisty’s. We had cupcakes and everyone asked if I’d had any contractions or if I thought it’d be soon that I’d have this baby. ”Oh no, I don’t feel anything…I’m sure it’ll be a while…”
Everyone left our apartment at about 9pm, and I got our toddler in bed, and tired from the events of the day…got ready for bed myself. Hubby and I retired a little after 10pm, and I just couldn’t fall asleep. I had a Veggie Tales song stuck in my head. As I laid there, I felt a little trickle and immediately sat up as I realized I had pee’d my pants a little (I realized later, that was no pee). That’s odd…I’d never done THAT before. I tiptoed to the bathroom, as I heard hubby sawing logs…I didn’t want to wake him. I went to my drawer to discover I had no clean underoo’s, and I figured I was awake enough, I might as well do a load of laundry and watch TV. I was, after all, meeting my doctor tomorrow, I needed clean underoo’s.
I was watching late night TV and folding baby clothes when my husband peeked out around 11:30 pm asking if I was crazy, and if we are going to have a baby. “No, just couldn’t sleep and soiled myself a bit, so enjoying a little late night quiet,” I responded. Not 30 minutes later, I started feeling contractions.
“This couldn’t be,” I thought to myself. “I’m sure it will stop, it’s too early.” Sometime around 1 am, not even realizing I was moaning, my husband came out wide eyed and said, “We gotta go to the hospital!” What? He was crazy…it’ll go away…I’m sure it will…it’s too early…I haven’t seen my doctor yet…I don’t want to be turned away… When he insisted because of the state he saw me in, I bit the bullet and consented.
We called our friends, The Hardisty’s, since we’d known them longer and they were our original “watch-our-toddler-while-we-have-a-baby” plan. But at a 1:30 am call, they didn’t answer, so we left a message. As we stared at each other trying to figure out who next to call, I mentioned the Hobson’s. I went to the park with that nice girl earlier in the week, and our boys got along well, I’m sure they’d be ok if we called them. “I just feel so bad waking them in the middle of the night,” I thought, “we barely know them.” We called and got the voice machine. At this point, I was starting to huddle over in pain. It was so strange that it kept getting stronger and lasting longer…and wasn’t going away.
Hubby grabbed our toddler, a stack of diapers, and filled his bottle up to the brim with his beloved milk (for some reason, this fact makes me giggle, we never filled the bottle all the way because he guzzled milk and would drink it all, but he was prepping for a long night). As we were about to head out the door with plans to take little guy with us to the hospital, we got a phone call. It was the Hobson’s calling us back after hearing our message (they thought it was a prank call), and said of course we could bring our little man over, she was prepping the portable crib when we hung up.
It was actually a blessing in disguise, their home was on the way to the hospital, the Hardisty’s were a good 20 minutes out of the way. No cell phones back then either, people. Luckily, we got the call before we left.
Within 5 minutes, we were at our friends home. I stayed in the car as my husband rushed in our sleepy eyed toddler, just 23 months old…his life was about to change. I so badly wanted to exchange pleasantries with this nice couple for taking our child, but I was in no position to do that. In fact, in the 2 minutes that my husband was inside…I felt the need to push and HONKED the horn for him to come out. I felt embarassed that I did that, what would this new friend think of me as I honked on her driveway in the middle of the night, anxious for my husband to come out? I felt so rude. Luckily the honking worked, and he came rushing out. I didn’t even see their faces, didn’t get to offer a half smile of “thank you for taking my sweet little one…” Didn’t get to say “hug and love on him while I’m off to bring his little brother into this world…”
It was a 10 minute drive to the hospital, and my husband delighted in breaking the law and running through stop signs. I mean, he is a rule follower to. the. T. but he’d always known when rushing a woman to the hospital who is about to have a baby, that certain rules don’t apply…especially in the middle of the night when hardly anyone else is around. He even went straight through a red light (of course while cautiously looking in each direction). He still loves to tell the kids this story…breaking the rules.
We checked into the hospital at 2:10 a.m. They asked who our doctor was, and we quickly explained that technically we didn’t have one…the doctor we were supposed to see last week had an insurance problem and I was supposed to go in a few hours. We did, however, register at the hospital a few days before when we had the tour. We weren’t completely irresponsible.
As I quickly breathed in and out…slightly hobbled over…we got to a room, and the nurse slowly handed me a gown, suggested I get change into said gown, and in a few minutes someone would come check me. They didn’t understand the gravity of the situation…
I changed out of my clothes, into my gown, and saw blood. That got the nurses more interested in my situation, and when they checked my dilation, I was FULLY DILATED to 10 centimeters–fully effaced! They said, we need to have this baby NOW! I told them…
The nurses paged the on-call doctor, he showed up, and it was “go time!” Twenty minutes after we arrived at the hospital, and two big pushes later, we had our 8 lb. 1 oz. baby boy. The doctor proclaimed, “We make ‘em bigger in Texas.” Ten years later, that “on-call” doctor is who I see for my yearly visits.
Our 10 year old is a charmer…a happy go lucky kid who is a leader, kind to others, and has one of the greatest giggles I’ve ever heard. I love this boy with all my heart, and I’m so grateful to be his mom.
Love this boy!
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