Monday, November 3, 2008

30 Years Ago Today

One Week Old

It was a hard pregnancy, during a very hot summer, right after Paul and I were married. I was pregnant the first month after my wedding. Nana, thought people might talk since our wedding was so quick. :) ... They did. On Halloween, The doctor put me in the hospital. I had Toxemia. I was ok, you were not. After 2 days, they told us they were transferring us to UCI medical center in Orange County. IF you would survive, it would be there. I cried that night and told Daddy, 30% chance just wasn't enough odds for you. Daddy responded in the way I would learn to expect from him, we're going with they won't have to take you.
Today, early, 30 years ago, they transported me to UCI, from the ambulance, I could see the front of daddy's z car as he followed us. Your Aunt Sandie came down from Concord and beat us to UCI. They learned right away that you were dying and your ONLY chance was a C-Section. You had less than a 1% chance of survival and a normal life. By 2:00 EVERYONE was there; Nana Grampa Eny, Aunt Kathie,  Aunt Mary Aunt Sandie, They took you at 2:10 Friday, November 3rd. You weren't due until 1/25. 
They expected a 2lb baby, you were smaller. My dates said 28 weeks, RIGHT on the border of viability in 1978. You turned out to be 25 weeks. You weighed less than a two pound box of Sees candies that Father Tom brought me.
Your first three days were a blur to me as the hospital worked to get my blood pressure down. Turns out,  you weren't' doing very well. I asked Father Tom, who was there every day, to baptize you. He did. That marked the beginning of your turn around. From declining, to maybe surviving. The nurses wondered and Father Tom, smiled and told them it was the Irish Whisky he used for the Baptism.
It was a very rough 75 days that followed Kate. Marked by improvement and decline. Bowel failure, Liver failure and constant "Septic Episodes". God taught me a lot during those days. He taught me patience when you HAD to tolerate food or die. Every three hours, I called or was there to make sure you had tolerated your "last feed". We could only look 3 hours to the future. I learned to pray in  December, when they said you would probably not make it. I learned to pray not for what I wanted but for the strength to get through it; to accept it. To be a good mom to your brother Robbie through all this.  I still hadn't been allowed to hold you December 1st when they told me you may not make it. I asked the Blessed Mother to hold you for me if I couldn't. During that 75 days, I saw so many mothers loose their precious babies. I heard the sobs and could almost feel their tears.

January 17th, 1979, you would come home to us. For three years I couldn't buy your birthday cake without crying; for joy. Every hard time in our live would be measured by the fact that Katie lived, this is NOTHING to worry about. We survived our worst moment(s), our biggest challenge as parents and as a married couple, 6 months after our wedding. NOTHING could really be THAT bad after God's most precious gift to us.. YOU. 
You are my child of hope and of faith and of joy. 
You would get irritated growing up, when I would tell you to STOP being negative, you had a responsibility to cherish and LIVE each moment of your life.. but you did learned to hope. You have come through a lot of rough times since our victory 30 years ago, you keep hoping, you never give up. You are a marvelous parent to Sabby. EVEN THOUGH, Dad and I keep TELLING you this or that. 
Thank you Kathleen for ALWAYS being such a fighter and for 30 years of joy. (Even when you brought that guy home with a black widow spider tatooed to his arm; or accepted all those collect phone calls ---$400.00;... Ok I'll stop)
In the Growing Nursery Jan 1979
 With Your big brother Robbie May 1979

You were finally as big as the doll Aunt Mary bought you, September 1979

Easter 1980

Backyard in Chino

Bonanza, on your wedding Day with Dad

You are a wonderful Mommy! Keep looking upward honey!
Thanks for taking the time to read my blog today.. Sorry it got a bit long and had too much drama! :)


lyndsey27 said...

Ha my sister! She is one of a kind. " I thought he called me!!!"
Happy birthday Katie!

Sandy said...

What a beautiful post today, happy birthday to Katie! Oh wow, what you all went through and I can't even imagine what those weeks must have been like!

thanks for sharing all that, her fight to survive is an incredible story.

And...I always have wisdom to pass around to my sons,...about their own kids..hahaha. I think they get tired of it, but they do listen.

Rudee said...

What an amazing post and tribute to a mother and father's love. Happy Birthday to your precious daughter. It's nice to know there are answers to prayers and that so many years later, they're still acknowledged and appreciated.

Jose said...

Oh, the power of prayer and love are unique. Now you have a way of confusing this Mexicano, but in the end I got it loud and clear. What a magnifizent tribute, call me weak but it wasn't hard to shed a tear just to hear how much love is behind this post. A very happy birthday to you.

In a separate note, today is mi chica's birthday too, except she is only 29... again!

Betty Flocken said...

Jose! I don't think you being Mexicano has ANYTHING to do with your confusion. I re-read my post and got confused! and it was MY post! LOL. Sorry Happy Birthday to your Wife. She ONLY looks 29 to me!
LOL Sandy, I told my kids after I survived that heart attack that I still had way too much unsolicited advice to pass on to them before I could actually die and leave them in PEACE!
Thanks Rudee. There is Never a day that goes by I don't celebrate her birth and the lessons learned.

Brenda said...

Happy Birthday to Katie! She looks beautiful and has given you both such a pretty little grand daughter. Telling your story like you did, probably made it seem like yesterday instead of 30 years. I am sure she cherishes your advice and you and your husband and all of your family.

Michelle said...

Wow what a beautiful post! There is so much love behind it. It even made me tear up! Happy birthday to your daughter! She is beautiful.

Mima said...

What a terrible thing to have to endure as such a tiny little thing, I am so glad that she came through and has proved to be such a joy to all that are around her, and now such a wonderful Mum as well.

OvaGirl said...

wow betty that is an amazing post and your archive photos as ever are so incredibly evocative. thankyou for sharing this story and happy birthday to kate.

MurciaDailyPhoto and said...

It's a beautiful story.
How much wisdom in your words.