No, I’m not talking about my belly, although it is a very full circle! A nurse I hadn’t seen in two weeks came in the other day and exclaimed, “You’re getting big!” I’m very hopeful that it means Valencia is likewise getting big. This morning I had an ultrasound and the sonographer commented how chubby Valencia’s cheeks look.
What I’m really talking about is where I am presently located. Thirty-nine years ago today I was…………….exactly in this same spot.
Well, actually about 20 paces away from my current room. The photo below was taken just now from the doorway of the room I’ve been in since I arrived here.
Behind those double doors, exactly thirty-nine years ago today, I laid in that tiny little bassinet, not too unlike the type they still use today and will use for my Valencia. My mom and dad named me Katrina despite getting a little grief for how “different” it was.
And now, here I am, just down the hall. And my little Valencia will have my name (or a slightly modified version) as her middle name. By all rights I should not be at this hospital. Prior to coming here I had no idea that this actually used to be St. Mary’s Hospital. The odds of this same floor being used as the antepartum (where I am) unit almost 40 years later can’t be all that high.
How do I know that behind those doors used to be the labor and delivery area? Because, my favorite nurse, Carol, WAS WORKING HERE all those years ago in the labor and delivery unit when I was born. She tells me she hasn’t retired yet because she likes taking her trips to Florida 🙂 So she “shouldn’t” be here either, really. But she is, and she is my nurse quite often on this antepartum unit. Crazy.
Here we are, Carol and I. I told her, “We haven’t gotten very far in life, Carol.” I mean, 20 feet or so? It’s one of those times in life where you realize you’ve come full circle.
This morning I received countless Facebook birthday wishes and one in particular said something along the lines of hoping the hospital had cake and ice cream for me. I replied sarcastically that it was more like ‘blood draws’ and ‘steroid shots’ because that’s exactly what I got at 6am. But then Carol came in and brought me this! She stopped special last night to get it. How sweet 🙂
And, as fate would have it, Rachie brought the kids down here and after eating lunch we were walking to the elevators just now when lo and behold, some ladies stopped us in the lobby and said it was Sibling Day. They were celebrating with ice cream sundaes! Ha ha! Poor Rachie, they had games too and the prizes were very LOUD Kemps ice cream cow bells and obnoxious ice cream cone shooter things. Good luck, Rach. My room is very quiet. I’m sure I can’t say the same for her car.
The bouquet of flowers Rachie helped the kids make for me:
I look at the steroid shot as a really good birthday present for Valencia. I’m hoping it will help her lungs mature so much that she won’t need a respirator or too much help on Monday after she is born. And THAT would be a HUGE gift to me.
My other huge gift was seeing my babes. Mae kept holding my face and saying, “Mama, mama.” “That’s my mama.” As if she were reminding herself. I miss my babies so much but REALLY appreciate everyone who has brought them down for visits. We’ve been lucky that way.
Thank you everyone for the Happy Birthday wishes and tokens of love (geez, MFM team from Maple Grove, make me cry why don’t you? And the added touch of sending Shawn over to deliver the package was quite the nice touch 😉 ).
Last year I remember COMPLETELY believing that I was turning 39. When I realized, while at Laura’s house, that I was actually only 38, I jumped for joy in her yard. I had gained a WHOLE YEAR, just like that! And while part of me instinctively says, ‘dang, wish I had lost this whole last stinky year’, I really can’t say that. I saw my beautiful babies on the ultrasound this morning and I wouldn’t trade them for anything in the world. I couldn’t.
Little did my parents or I know, as I lay in that tiny bassinet, just what was in store for me. But God always knew. I’m going to lie down now and take a rest and reflect upon all that I’ve done, all that I’ve seen and everywhere I’ve been that brought me these whole 20 feet.
Love to you all,
PS I’m NOT 40 YET!