We were living in Cripple Creek, Colorado. Your mom started going into labor in the evening. It was about a two hour drive to get to the hospital in Colorado Springs. So we left and had a pretty uneventful drive there. Your mother wanted to have a natural delivery so she declined the epidural the nurses offered.   I guess it must have been about three in the morning when the pain got pretty bad. The doctor came in and said she was dilation was almost to ten and she could start pushing.

I don’t remember how long all of this took but it was early in the morning when your little head popped out and you had your first glimpse of the world. I cut the umbilical cord and the nurses cleaned you. The doctor hadn’t left and I knew something was wrong.  I looked over at the doctor.  There was so much blood. The nurses put my attention to you and kept me busy taking care of you. I welcomed you into the world and they wheeled your mother out of the room.  I wasn’t sure what to do so I called my mom and dad and then called your mom’s mother and father.

After about an hour or so my parents arrived and my mother was busy holding you when the doctor came into the room.  “I can’t stop the bleeding”. He said. “I just can’t find where it’s coming from. I need to take her entire reproductive system out and stop it that way.  She won’t be able to have any more children. I’m sorry”

“Do what ever it takes to save her” I said. She had two children and I had two children. We weren’t planning on having more children. But I put on a show like I was sad when inside I was actually very happy.

My mother noticed that you started wheezing and in came the nurses carrying you away too.  I sat there in shock.  I honestly believed I was going to loose you both that night. Your mothers parents showed up and I explained to them what had happened.  Your grandmother on your mothers side was always so calm and with her “bless her heart” accent, it seemed that everything was going to be okay.

I walked out of the room to the nursery and looked at you with an IV sticking out of your head.  I guess it was the only place they could find a vein to put it in. Your mother was put in a hospital room. You were put in neo-natal intensive care in different hospital across town.

They put four pints of blood into your mother.  She was so close to bleeding to death that we almost lost her that night.  I took the next two weeks off of work.  I would go to your mothers room so she could pump milk for your to drink and then I was off to the other hospital to feed you.

One of the saddest places I’ve ever seen is neo-natal intensive care. All of those babies had been born prematurely and some of them you could hold in the palm of your hand.  You looked like a giant compared to them and I used to wonder why they had put you there.

The nurses were very nice to me and always had a rocking chair ready for me to sit in while I held you and fed you.  The also love to pull off my shirt.  Was good for you they would tell me, and the skin to skin contact was something that babies really needed.  I’m sure part of that is true. But it never bothered me. As hard a job that has to be for those girls, I hoped it would bring a little joy into their lives.

The wheezing had stopped but you did have a small hole in your heart that I guess closed as you got older. When we took you home you were on oxygen for like the first six months of your little life. We did live at almost 10,000 feet above sea level and I’m sure it was just a precaution. Your little life started out pretty hard and the strength  you have today shown even then.


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