My mom recently gave me a rundown of various facts about my actual day of birth, which I will now indulgently list, (you’re welcome):
A) It was, predictably, a hot July 15th when I entered the world.
B) My mom had me at a university teaching hospital.
C) The monitors revealed I was in distress because…
D) no one back then in the dark ages knew that my mom had placenta previa.
E) The OBGYN said, “If you want this kid to be able to read and write, we have to do a C section now.”
F) This seems like kind of a weird way to present the necessity of this procedure, but whatever.
G) I’m here. And I can read and write, so there’s that.
H) The delivery room filled with interns and residents hoping to catch a caesarean peep show.
I) My mom shouted as they began making the incision, “I can feel that!”
J) My dad (the MEDICAL DOCTOR) turned white and slumpy. The crowd of interns/residents passed him to a chair at the end of the room.
K) After delivery, my mom asked an orderly who was wheeling her to recovery if she had a boy or a girl. The orderly said, “I think it was a boy.”
L) He was wrong.
M) I was the third girl. Two more would follow me.
N) Also, people who don’t know the facts about a just-born baby should say, “Let me find out for you,” instead of guessing wrong. Again, whatever.
O) My mom was taken to recovery where she wasn’t with other postpartum women, but rather an assortment of random post-surgical patients, such as…
P) the guy in the next bed, who was lying on his stomach because his back was badly burned.
Q) This strikes me as bizarre, because she did not give birth in a MASH unit.
R) When she was taken to her hospital room, the young single girl sharing the room with her spent three hours talking on the phone. In the middle of the night.
S) My two sisters wanted to name me Cindy.
T) This is because they had been passive-aggressively coached by my grandma.
U) When my mom went to her prenatal (and postpartum) appointments, all patients were weighed in the waiting room. The nurse would then yell each patient’s weight across the room to the person recording this information.
V) Are you kidding me?
W) I mean, really 1970’s?
X) Nice way to treat new moms.
Y) My mom and I both felt glad we weren’t currently giving birth. Or having our weight shouted across a room full of body-shamed women.
Z) But we were glad that we did it before, on the occasion of each of our children coming into the world.
I am the baby in this photograph, with my seesters Lisa and Amber.