Twenty-three years ago today, Washington's birthday, my youngest child was born. All 10 1/2 lbs. and 24 inches of him. Yes, I felt like I was having twins. When I was seven months pregnant people were saying "Any day now?" It was a huge relief when I went into labor!
He was my only child (out of 5) born in a hospital. I had been lucky before finding midwives who delivered uncomplicated pregnancies at home. But we had moved, and I didn't know a midwife here I trusted, and my midwife friend in Alaska was already booked, so even a free trip to Hawaii wasn't going to get her here.
I found the next-best-thing, a doctor who had worked at a birthing center and was happy to let me do things my way. Of course the hospital had their way of doing things, but I managed to get around some of them. The nurse on duty that night had also had worked at the birthing center, and she pretty much took care of me like she would have there.
A good friend was at my side, as well as our oldest daughter, a teenager, who had requested to be at the birth. and my husband brought the older kids to see their new brother shortly after he was born.
I think the strangest thing about being in the hospital was not being able to just take the baby and go home afterwards. It was the middle of the night, and we had to stay there until the next afternoon so the pediatrician could check him out. I just wanted to be home.
Some things seem like yesterday! But here he is, a young adult.
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