Monday, October 04, 2004

Life Saver

42 years ago today, my Mother was rushed to the hospital. She was eight months pregnant with me and her appendix ruptured. They delivered me with great haste, threw me in an incubator and hoped for the best. I was less than 4 pounds.

They prepared my Mom for surgery; she was not doing very well. The medical staff told my then psychiatric resident Father to bring in his 8 year old daughter to possibly say good bye to her Mother. The odds were not in my Mom’s favor. Thankfully she made it through the surgery and was in the ICU for 6 weeks. I ended up coming home before my Mom.

So there is my Father with an 8-year-old daughter and a pre-mature infant daughter, his wife fighting for her life in the ICU and he must show up for work. We were living on the grounds of a mental institution ( yes for those of you keeping score – I was conceived on the grounds of a mental institution – it explains a lot) and my Father had to find someone to take care of my sister and I. The most logical choice? One of his patients who was institutionalized for stabbing her husband to death and not speaking since that event. Doris was her name. Perhaps my Father didn’t want a family anymore and figured this was the easiest way to get rid of at least 2 of his responsibilities. Or maybe he is really good at what he does and trusted Doris with our well being. I am grateful for the latter. (I promise to tell the story of Doris soon – she was very special and instrumental in my life)

My story has a happy ending. Mom finally came home and of course it took her a while to recover. All of us count our blessings each day. But it wouldn’t be my birthday without my Mom calling me and telling me this story and how it was raining cats and dogs on the way to the hospital. She has always called me her lifesaver. I always thought she was mine.

Either way, I think we deserve at least a flavor named after us. Any suggestions?

5 comments:

RP said...

That is quite a story. Happy Birthday! I'm looking forward to hearing about Doris.

HotForSimon said...

Mom rocks....!!!

And HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!

coughyourestillolderthanmecough

Wicked H said...

Thanks for the Birthday Wishes, R.P. and HFS.

My day turned out and ended much better than I expected.

Anonymous said...

AH.....memory lane....as we traipse through memory lane on the anniversary of your 42nd birthday (yes,I'm late again in the blog department!)I remember that fateful day like it was yesterday. It was indeed raining cats and dogs. Later after you arrived, dad took me to see you in the nursery. Here was this ??baby all swaddled in the hospital nursery blankets. All I focused on was your nail-less fingers and your head with bilateral temporal bruises, somewhatlike a damaged grapefruit. I remember asking dad if we could get our money back, as the "product" appeared to be "damaged" (no comment from the psychiatric resident dad). I also remember the Sisters of St. Francis Hospital allowing me to visit my mom in the ICU( a tremendous fete in and of itself, as in l962 NO CHILDREN were ever allowed to visit in an ICU, I think they figured she wasn't going to make it.0 Mom looked pretty sick. To an 8 year old she appeared to be half dead, tubes coming out of every orifice, machines beeping and blooping and odd upside down bottles with fluid running into her bruised arms.....yes I remember it quite well....the special oders of the ICU still conjure up memories for me today. In fact, (for those of you keeping score...I'm now 50 and employed in the medical field). Everyday when I have to go to the ICU to see my patients the same smells and sounds illicit memories of that exact same day. I see my mother laying in the hospital bed, near death. Yes, technology has moved on and the medical equipment has changed and improved, but the mind's eye has indelibly recorded it. I hated the ICU then and feared it in my adulthood, but I have conquered my fears. Life goes on...You are my closest pal today and mom is happily with us (I think the woman is a cat....she must have 9 lives as she has made it through many other death defying fetes...more bloggable stories for wicked to write about later perhaps)So, here's looking at you kid, you've turned out ok. Keep up the good work.....Happy Birthday!! Nutcrackersweet 54

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