Blogging about life in Minnesota, raising our six kids with Down syndrome while battling Breast Cancer.

Be the kind of woman that when your feet hit the floor in the morning the devil says, "Oh shit! She's up!"

Tuesday, December 02, 2014

26 Years

On this night 26 years ago my then-husband, K. and I walked around the Christmas Tree lot, my ginormous pregnant belly leading the way as I balanced 15 month old Noah on my hip. December 2nd was my due date, and I knew if we didn't get the tree up that night it might not happen at all.

It was 1988 and I was 21 years old. We lived in this cute little house. (it was white with red trim in 1988) Imagine it buried under 2 feet of snow.

We put the tree into the bed of the old Ford pickup truck. It was such a cold night that night, the snow crunching under our feet as we hurried into the house. My husband wanted to let the tree stand outside overnight but I was insistent. It HAD to get put up inside. Tonight!

We got it centered in the tree stand and situated in our tiny living room. My husband sat down on the couch to rest and promptly fell asleep. I got Noah into his PJs and tucked into his new big boy bed, stopping in the baby's room to look into the empty crib. I put my hand on my belly, knowing very soon that heavenly baby smell would be filling the  room. I climbed the stairs to our attic and started carrying all the Christmas boxes to the living room. Up and down the stairs I went, box after box.

I checked all the tree lights and strung them on the tree, stopping now and then to stretch my aching back, taking inventory of what was left to do. One hour, two hours…three. Around midnight I declared the house decorated and lugged the now empty boxes back up the stairs and gave them a shove into the attic. Finally, I turned off all the lights and sat on the couch admiring the beautiful tree and the Christmas season ahead of us. It was then that I realized how badly my back ached, and that I was exhausted. I thought of all that was ahead of us.

I struggled to get my pregnant self off the couch and woke my husband to come to bed. I knew we'd be having a baby soon.

At 4:30 a.m. I was woken by a very STRONG contraction. Wow! I got up to go to the bathroom but had another contraction before I got there. I went back to bed to watch the clock. 90 seconds later I had another contraction. RUH ROH! My husband had already left for is early shift job. I picked up the phone to call him, "Uh, you better come home quick!"

"What? I just walked in the door 30 seconds ago. Ok, I'll be right there!"

Thankfully he only worked a few blocks away. So, too, were his parents. I called his mom to let her know we'd be over in a few minutes with Noah. My husband walked in the door while I was trying to tie my shoes. He grabbed Noah and the already packed diaper bag and headed for the car. He was moving about 30 times faster than me. By the time I got to the back door he was gone.


I called my mom. "Well, this should be interesting. He left without me." I wasn't sure what to do. I called his mom. "Is K. there yet?"

"He just pulled in the driveway. I'll run out and get Noah from him and send him back right away."

My contractions were coming consistently between 1 1/2 - 2 minutes and they were very strong. I wanted to sit down but was really afraid if I did I wouldn't get up, but have the baby right there instead. A few minutes later my husband pulled in honking his horn. I'm sure the neighbors loved that at 5:00 a.m.!

It only took us 15 minutes or so to arrive at the hospital. They put me on a monitor and checked my cervix. I was not even one full centimeter dilated! HOW could that BE???? UGH! I was so afraid they would send me home but the monitor showed my contractions to be very strong so they kept me. A few minutes later the doctor came in to check me again and I was at 4 cm so he broke my water. The very next contraction I told the nurse I felt like pushing. Her response? "Oh you do NOT! We *just* checked you and you were only at 4. Have a few more contractions and quit panicking."

Oh I was mad. The very next contraction I told my husband to call that nurse back to my room. "You better check me now because I am going to PUSH DAMMIT!" She wasn't happy with me. She was very rough when she went to check me, then started verbally back pedaling. "Oh wow! You're at TEN!!! The doctor LEFT the hospital!"

That movie-like flurry of activity happened and the next thing I knew it was 5:58 and I had a screaming 8 lb 10oz baby boy laying on my belly.

Raising Tyler wasn't always an easy job, but he sure made it fun!

Today Tyler is 26 years old. He is going to school and living his life. But he is THE BEST big brother to the 5 A's. He frequently helps us out on the weekends, and while I was going through chemo he was often here getting things done that I couldn't physically do.

For 26 years I have been his mother. You make me proud, Tyler!


Stephanie said...

Happy birthday to Tyler!

eliz said...

The time flies too fast.
Happy Birthday Tyler!