I'd been feeling sick for weeks in spite of the Bendictin, a medication prescribed for me every time I'd been pregnant; the only live births I managed were when I reluctantly-I was afraid of potential Thalidymide like effects-took the medication during the pregnancy. When we went to South Carolina to meet Crusty's parents, and I'd got so sick, the ER doctor prescribed it, and I took it just as prescribed. The way the script was written enabled me to refill it as needed for the duration.
I tell myself now that a lot of the things that happened to me were the consequences of so many past lives lived-I used to say "You can take the girl out of the Medieval, but you can't take the Medieval out of the girl."
That January day I was exhausted from the moment I woke; Crusty made supper and called me to the table. When I got up, I found that my body was going numb on the right side; by the time I got to the table, I couldn't move without exercising extreme will, and I couldn't speak at all. My mind was completely clear, I just couldn't get the words from it to my tongue successfully.
After dinner Crusty took me to the hospital. Amoung the other things they did was to give me the name of an obstetrician and inform that I was indeed covered under the insurance.
So, when the doctor's office took my history, they asked if I was allergic to anything or had a 'bad' reaction to any medication. I told them Demerol and I did not get along.
Around 0700 CST the anesthesiologist came in and gave me a shot "to relax" me prior to the insertion of the saddle block. I'd asked to be awake if possible during delivery so that I could see and hold my new child the minute he hit cold air.
I didn't hold his sister until she was nearly a week old, and I've always thought that had a lot to do with the ambivalence we'd felt toward each other-that and the conflict her father created.
I could bore you with details but prefer to tell you that I was really sick. I will say that I was in such bad shape I needed several units of blood on the table, and several more post-op. At least eight people-blood donors-participated in the effort to save my life when I had Fox's sister; I gave blood regularly for years as a small way to say thank-you until I caught Dengue in Central America and had to stop.
Instead of Demerol, they gave me morphine.
Demorol is synthetic morphine. You'd think they might have reasoned that a bad reaction to Demorol might be a good reason to NOT give me morphine. I started throwing up before they made the incision and didn't stop until late the next day.
AAACK! Welcome to the world Fox, Mummy's sick from morphine and may have to turn away to barf...
I felt the action of Fox's removal from the womb as a 'whoosh' sensation.
"Ten!" "A beautiful boy!" Soon after, "Ten!"
My little Fox had passed the most important two tests he would ever take in his life-the Apgar, and he'd done so with the highest scores possible. Thanks be to God, my son had a real chance at life.
Between throwing-up sessions, I begged to see my son, and the nurses untied my left arm so that I could hold him-sort of. I looked at my son-reddish gold hair, blue, blue eyes-and I knew the feeling of love I felt for him at that moment would endure for eternity. I hated when they took him so that Crusty could see him.
Two hours later I was pitching quite a row to have him brought back to me. By that time I was back in my room, still woozy but determined to permit NO distance between my son and me.
The nurses were toughies, but I prevailed by invoking the doctor's permission, and insisting they check with him.
Soon Fox was laid carefuly at my side, Crusty instructed to not let me fall asleep and roll over on him-HMPH, as if! I'd had a saddle block and knew if I so much as lifted my head I would suffer the absolute worst headache. But I could turn my head and just look at him.
Which I did. For hours.
By the grace of God, I had my son and he had me. I knew that Crusty was a jerk, and I silently apologized to Fox that day, and promised him that if Crusty could father so wonderous a child, there must be something good about him, and I would find that good so that Fox and his father would find each other.
Because something wasn't right, and I knew that, just not what that 'not right' thing was.
The morning God gave me the incredible gift of Fox was the only day I was with Crusty that Crusty was unable to destroy with his unremitting negativity.
That morning has sustained me for 24 years.
Fox, my beautiful boy, I would change everything about the last 25 years if I could, EXCEPT you. If God told me I could go back in time in full knowledge of what was to come, and granted me that I could change it all, but not have you, I would say 'thanks, but no thanks.'
I really believe that Crusty is a man who chose to be incredibly evil; I think he thinks he is going to try to 'cop a plea' when he faces God, and I know that my trust that God doesn't do jailhouse lawyers cuts no ice with you in so far as forgiving me for what you went through.
And I suspect that you'd just as soon have not been born, and so wouldn't much apreciate that if changing the past meant not having you, I'd take a pass on changing the past.
I'm hoping I'm wrong.
Because I love you, and I miss you; BTW, I miss 'Bas, too.
I made some very serious mistakes that affected your life. But I tried to learn from them. I tried to not repeat them.
And I told you about them in the hopes that you would choose to learn from my mistakes so as to spare yourself the horror of learning from them by repeating them on your own.
It's what parents do. I'm not perfect at it. But I'm trying.
To me, one of the most important things to learn from what happened is that using a child as a chain, a weapon, or an excuse for revenge, is the single most evil act one can commit.
I did what I did to save your life. Literally.
My birthday wish for you is that one day you are truly glad to be alive, and that until then you can at least keep from spreading any of your pain and anger (at my failings and what I've come to think you see as God's, too) to the world at large, and most importantly, to your own beautiful boy.