Whenever a new baby comes into the picture it really turns a household upside down.
This happened when each of our three children were born and has happened once again as my new "baby," Bonbon Break was born, or rather, launched, on July 16.
Life has been crazy. The dishwasher and I are surviving, but since I have new arrivals on my mind I thought it would be fun to re-visit a post I did last year.
"Kids Choice" was originally published on this site June 12, 2011 and has always been a favorite of mine.
Whenever I'm desperate for something to write
about, I'll ask one of my kids for an idea. As often as not, the answer
is "me." This week my daughter Lizzy suggested I write about Nick Jr.
Last week my twelve-year-old Tom suggested I write about "The Magical Day" he was born.
I thought that's very sweet, but there was one little problem. The
result of that day was absolutely magical, but the 24 hours of labor
before he arrived via a cesarean section at 12:30 a.m. was not.
For almost seven of those hours, I was 9 1/2 centimeters dilated. The
C-section had to be performed while I was under general anesthesia.The
"trendy" walking epidural I had been given during the long hours of
labor was raised and lowered so many times in anticipation of my
delivery, that by the time my doctor did the c-section, no spinal
anesthetic would work.
I woke up around 2:00 am that December day in the recovery room with my
husband at the foot of my bed holding a moving bundle of blankets that
was our beautiful baby boy.
My husband was all smiles as he brought our newborn son to me. Because
of the general anesthesia, and some complications it was causing with my
oxygen levels, I could not hold my baby. So I touched his tiny little
feet and said, "Hi Tommy." My son turned his head around to the voice he
had been hearing for almost 42 weeks.
That was a magical moment and one I will never forget.
But the day was not what I had fantasized about for almost 10 months.
My husband and I would dream about what it would feel like to finally
meet the child we so desperately wanted after four miscarriages. We had
gone through so much, surely we would get the birth story that would
rival any that I saw on "A Baby Story."
Early that Wednesday morning in December, I thought I was well on my way
to getting my perfect baby story. It was 10 days past my due date, and
when I started to get contractions at 3:00 am while watching reruns
of "Law and Order," I knew this was probably it.
I woke my husband, and I remember never wanting to leave our bed as we
lay and timed contractions. My husband was anxious to get to the
hospital. We lived in Queens, but our doctor and the hospital were in
I was thinking of savoring the moment and cocooning with my
husband and soon-to-be-born son. Joe was thinking of getting his
pregnant wife into the city through rush hour traffic.
earlier, I decided that when I started to get contractions, I would
first go to my sister's East 85th St. apartment a few blocks from the
hospital. While she was in Los Angeles on business, the place was ours.
My plan was that I would labor at Wendy's and then go to the hospital.
My husband decided not to argue with me, even though he wanted to go
straight to the hospital. He respected my wishes and brought me to my
sister's. I barely walked up the two flights of stairs and waited for
Joe to park the car. The pain was intense, but I was adamant about not
calling the doctor until 9:00 a.m.
plan was to go to the doctor's office, and I was going to stick to it.
There was no way I was going to be one of those first timers who arrived
at the hospital only to be sent home.
By the time we decided that my plan was not going to work, it was a
weekday at 8:30 a.m. on the Upper East Side of Manhattan. Good luck
hailing a cab.
My husband left me off to the side of Third Avenue
because the teacher at our Lamaze class had warned fathers not to look
for a cab with an obviously pregnant wife. I stood on the corner of 83rd
street holding onto a lamp post. Not a pretty picture.
When I saw a garbage truck pass by, I thought perhaps they would take me
to the hospital. Finally my husband hailed a livery cab and gave the
driver $20 for a eight-block ride.
Fast forward 16 hours later, flat on my back, and feeling like a Mack
truck hit me. It was taking so long to get my oxygen levels back
to normal that the nurses suggested my husband go back to my sister's
place to get a little rest.
had requested a private room so he could stay with the baby and me, but
it did not look promising. We said goodbye, and I was left alone in the
recovery room, no husband and no baby. I never saw this on "A Baby
I thought my luck was picking up when they wheeled me into my room, a
beautiful private room. Even though it was a shift change, I begged the
nurse to let me see and hold my baby because even though my son
was seven hours old, I had never held him.
I still remember the pure joy and pure fear as she put him in my arms. I
was in my room, holding my perfect son and I was all alone. Well, not
really alone, because now I had him. The beautiful baby in the blanket.
To make this day even odder, my husband did not come to the hospital
till about 1:00 in the afternoon. I thought maybe he was just really
tired because we had spoken on the phone a few times and he didn't say
anything was wrong.
Turns out that being up 24 hours and full of adrenaline made him forget
the instructions from my sister to not lock the deadbolt.
husband was locked in my sister's apartment until he could get a
locksmith to get him out because her super was out Christmas shopping.
I can still remember him coming to my room with the most beautiful
red roses and a box of chocolate cigars to give out. He had the biggest
smile on his face and that room became our whole world for four full
As I write about this, I see that Tom was right, the day he was born was magical: in a Joe and Kathy kind of way.
Thank you to everyone who came and helped me celebrate the launch of Bonbon Break. Val and I have been thrilled by the response and outpouring of good wishes! If you haven't had a chance to visit, come on over and see our second issue. I know you will enjoy it!