Today is my birthday. I wasn’t really looking forward to it, but Josh and Finn have made it an awesome day already. I previously wrote about the tradition of mom telling me the story of my birth on my birthday and it just isn’t my birthday unless I hear her tell me. I asked her to write it down so that I can enjoy it anytime I want and so I can share it with you all (because that was the thing that was missing out of your life, I know)! The funny thing is that I am 28 today. Another tally mark for a time when my mom was wrong. I think that gives her 5 and me 156,734. I figure as she gets older she’ll forget more and I can even up this score.
Happy Birthday Kate!
So……….. 27 years ago this morning (on a Sunday even!) your dad and Jessica and I decided to go to Baltimore to stay in a motel overnight. It had been atrociously hot in MD the past few days and we had no A/C. Being 9 months pregnant, (really 10 months as you were a month overdue) I was pretty miserable in the heat. We had to go to Baltimore anyway to take the 24 hour urine test to the hospital. I had been doing that test every week for a month – ever since your due date had passed. Over the month I had also had quite a few Braxton Hicks contractions too – but they always went away.
So we got our things together and headed over the Bay Bridge in our VW diesel. On the way (actually right on the Bay Bridge) I had some contractions – pretty strong – but then they stopped. So we found a motel and checked in. Your dad and Jessica got their swim suits on and headed out to the pool I was a little slower so they went ahead without me. While I was changing into my swim suit I felt a contraction – and I KNEW that was not a Braxton Hicks contraction! So I put my clothes back on and went to tell your dad. He and Jessica got out of the pool and changed into their clothes. We took Jessica to a family that we had found through Catholic Charities. They were going to keep her until you were born. We also called the hospital to let them know we were on our way and we found out that Janet – the midwife who had been following us – was a on rafting trip.
After we dropped Jessica off we drove to the hospital. When we arrived they took us right up to labor and delivery. We got to the hospital about 6 pm and I don’t remember how long it was before Janet arrived. But YOU arrived a few minutes after 9 pm! I remember that your dad did a super good job of helping me breathe – and that the labor and delivery was a breeze. You just slid right out – being long and skinny as you were – in spite of weighing 9 lbs and 9 ounces!
So after you were born your dad went back to get Jessica and brought her back to the hospital that night. She counted all your toes and fingers and declared you to have the proper number! Then she and your dad went back to the motel for the night and you and I slept together.
It was a wonderful experience for me – the pregnancy as well as the labor and deliver – and I always think about it on this day – and how happy I am that you chose to come and be such an important part of my life. You are – and always have been – a gift. We have certainly had our struggles over the years and I have many regrets for how I parented you, but I have NEVER regretted having you as my daughter and I have always been proud to be your mom. I am also proud to be Finn’s grandma and Josh’s mother-in-law. And as important as those two people are to me, there is just something that can never match the connection I have with you and Jessica.
I am so happy to see how you and Finn have bonded – and how great a job you are doing being his mom. I am also really happy to see the strong marriage and relationship that you and Josh have built. Even after all the mistakes I made as your mom you have become a caring, passionate, kind, giving person – and I love you more than most infinity. Thank you for forgiving me my mistakes, and for sticking in there with me – and for loving me through it all. Happy 27th birthday to you!