Happy Birthday Dear Vinnie!Posted: July 11, 2009
40 years ago today I wasn’t up to much, washing the kitchen floor or something, when I realized I was going into labour. This wasn’t unexpected, I was at term, at least 9 months gone. I called my OB, then called Dave who came home on his lunch break and drove me to the small private hospital in Redwood City where Dr. Ziegler practiced his craft. The pains were getting closer together.
I was admitted and put in a private room and checked on every so often for about an hour, and the pains started coming thick and fast. Still no sign of the anesthesiologist or the doctor but I wasn’t worried, IBM was picking up the tab for this and we were assured the best of care.
Now the pains began to feel as though they were seconds apart and lasting way too long. A tall red-headed nurse bent over me and asked if I knew anything about Lamaze. Nope. Instructions started coming in Anne’s soft Irish brogue. I breathed when told to, pushed when told to, breathed some more and pretty soon the little imp was crowning. It was like getting a car out of a snowbank, as I later described it to daughter Anna – rocking back and forth and back till it bursts free and speeds on its way. After a couple of bashes at my inner hips, the imp made it through and as he was escaping, I felt a terrible sorrow and loss at being parted from him, but lose him I must and Ian Vincent Russell Dow was now in the big world.
The anesthesiologist turned up in her green and white golf dress and began giving me oxygen. The doctor showed up and looked for the placenta which the Irish midwife had already taken care of. They both sent IBM a huge bill. I felt great, ready to plow a field like the sturdy peasant women of old.