At the request of my oldest son, I have been asked to write a story about the circumstances surrounding his birth. I can't remember anything political except that Nixon was impeached the fall before he was born. So the President of the United States was Gerald Ford. The Prophet of the Church was Spencer W. Kimball.
Thirty five years ago last month, my first son was born at 9:02 am. We had traveled to my Mother's and Dad's house for the weekend. Mom didn't want me to spend the night, in case I went into labor, so we traveled the hour back to our apartment that night. My husband was still in school there and his job was to feed horses on a Thoroughbred Farm on weekends in exchange for our rent. He fed the horses when we got back. While he was working, I thought I might be starting labor. Of course this would be my first birth, so I wasn't sure, so I didn't say anything to my husband. We retired to bed at 9 pm. But the labor pains continued every 5 minutes. By midnight, I finally awoke my sweetheart. We called the Elders Quorum President and asked them to come and give me a Priesthood blessing. Then he and his wife followed us to the hospital. The kind nurses didn't officially admit us until after midnight so we weren't charged for another day. And thus began a very LONG HARD night. I think I was afraid of labor. Back in those days we weren't given the wonderful drugs that block all the pain. They did administer some sort of pain killer, but the labor overpowered the drugs. I slept fitfully and walked the floor a lot as my dear husband sat by my side.
The doctor placed some sort of monitor on my baby's head, and another monitor on my belly. My husband claims that I am the one who made his round ring turn oval, I squeezed it so hard. I guess I believe him. I was in terrible pain. Later the doctor said he had never seen such hard labor. The monitor had paper a read-out, and the my labor jumped up to baby's heart beat on the paper every time. They were two minutes long and one minute apart for at least 9 hours.
After a very long night, I finally fell asleep, and the doctor woke me up to transfer me to the gurney so we could go to the delivery room. That is the worst to have to hoist your belabored body twice as you are experiencing such heavy labor. Thank Heavens for birthing rooms now-a-days.
My sister and my husband's sister had traveled to Europe the September before and had purchased a Euro-rail pass and both secured jobs and lived there. My sister stayed for 6 months and came home just in time for his birth. The whole time they were in Europe, they both were sure they were getting a nephew. They were right. I had chosen his first name long ago, and chose his second name to be after his father. He was the first grand baby on his Dad's side and the third living on my side. Two cousins were born in September, the year before and after his birth who both died. Heidi and Christy were both born premature and had respiratory distress syndrome.
That is the physical aspect of the story, but the emotional part is clearly different. From the time I was a little girl, I wanted a son first, so all the rest of my children could have an older brother. I even had his name picked out, unless I married someone by that name. If I could have figured it out, I would have had an older brother for my first son. I guess his dad sort of filled that position. He was an amazing dad to our children. S1 adored his dad and followed him around everywhere.
S1's labor was so hard, he had a hematoma on his head that took a month to go down. He also got jaundice right after we were dismissed from the hospital, so being a mom for the first time was a bit stressful. His daddy was so excited to have a baby, that he wanted very much to be a part of the whole process, so immediately, he began feeding him. He gave him a bottle with formula and even fed him baby food. He had purchased a variety from the grocery store and had them on hand. Blueberry Buckle was his choice. Naturally when I discovered it, I told him that was NOT allowed, but S1 knew a good deal when he had it. Blueberry Buckle tastes MUCH better than mother's milk and he preferred his dad from day ONE. I gave up nursing at one month.
S1 turned out to be wonderful older brother. We had another son two years later, so they were buddies and had someone to play with.
I had pictured what he would look like, but he turned out even more wonderful and handsome/beautiful (if babies are handsome) than I could have ever imagined. As he grew, he took his responsibility of oldest brother very seriously. He cared for his younger siblings like a hen watches her chicks. And even since he has grown and has children of his own, he continues to watch out for the rest of the family.
Sweetest Number One Son: I love you dearly. You are an amazing young man, the best I could have ever hoped for. May God bless you for at least another 35 years, and more if possible. May you live a healthy life and long enough to see great grand children. You are a good father, husband and son. I couldn't have asked for anyone better. I brag about you all the time and am so proud of you.
Thank you for all you do in your wonderful life.