Sunday, February 14, 2010

Valentine's Memories

When I think Valentine's Day, one specific Valentine's Day always comes to mind. It's not the typical type of memory you may associate with a day all about romance. Let me start at the beginning. I had been dating my boyfriend for less than a year when we found ourselves expecting. It was May of 95, and as you can imagine, it was a bit of a surprise. I had always wanted children, and wanted to have them fairly young (as most of my family tended to do), so was not upset at the idea of being a new mom. Now, I'm sure you've heard people say they can tell the moment they get pregnant, and I never really believed them, until it happened to me. I knew, I just waited for my cycle to confirm it. Nervous about being a mom before I was 20, with a man I wasn't married to, I delayed telling my family until I was 7 month's along. So, the first 7 month's were stressful as I tried to keep it a secret. I had only put on 5 pounds at this point, and just looked a little pudgy around the middle. 

My boyfriend didn't think he was ready to be a dad, and tried to convince me to put the baby up for adoption. I told him I'd think about it, but knew in my heart that I could never do it. From that first moment of conception, that was my child, a piece of me, and I couldn't bear the thought of someone else raising him. After much thought, and many discussions, I told my boyfriend that I was keeping the baby, even if that meant losing him. Luckily for all three of us, that was what it took to change his mind. When he realized how important it was to me, he came around. 

So as you can imagine, the first 2 trimesters of my pregnancy were very hard on me emotionally, although physically I was feeling great. I had a little bit of morning sickness that summer, and got dehydrated easily, but other than that, things were great. Now at the 7 month mark, my family knew, we were keeping the baby, and things were falling into place. I was very happy, and so excited to hold that little bundle that had been kicking me. His due date according to the doctors was February 1st, but I knew better, it was more like the 12th from calculating to the day of conception (they didn't believe me that I knew the exact day). So, the 1st rolls around, no baby, the 10th and the doctor wanted to discuss inducing. I knew it wasn't time yet, so told him not yet. That afternoon I went into labor. After a long night, my son was born at 2:53 am. 

Now for the hard part, he came out grayish in color, and I was told he was having difficulty breathing and holding his temperature. I got to hold him for a few seconds before he was taken to the nursery to be put in a heated bed. They ran test after test. Being as young as I was, I was scared out of my mind. I got into the nursery as soon and as often as I could to hold and feed him. I watched infuriated as the nurse took blood from his little foot, I wanted to punch her for hurting my baby, but knew in the back of my mind she was doing her job, and he wasn't really hurt. Didn't make me like her anymore knowing that though. 

So the days drag on, I watched nurses care for my new baby. And my heart broke every day to see him in there. Finally, his temperature was normal, his breathing was perfect, and they found nothing wrong. They believed that he swallowed a little of the amniotic fluid. On Valentine's Day, we were able to bring our little bundle of joy home. Since that day, Valentine's has always been a family celebration for us, and not a day for my husband and I (yes, I did eventually marry my son's father). I like it much better this way, it's a day with a lot more meaning now. It's not about candy and flowers, it's about family, love and life. 

Until next time,

The Blogoholic

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