WAS THE EARTHQUAKE A SIGN OF THINGS TO COME?
BY GLORIA FAYE BROWN BATES aka GRANNY GEE
On Monday morning I walked into the doctor's office for my appointment. I was in my 10th month, waiting for my baby to be born. My baby was due in the middle of October, now... it was November 17th.
The doctor induced my labor so, I could have my baby. Nothing happened on Tuesday. On Wednesday I began hurting in my back, I couldn't be still. I was in a room with older women who were getting ready to deliver their babies. I was the youngest in there.
Some of the women were crying from the pain. I bit my lip, and held my pain 'inside'. When I finally began crying, a nurse walked over to me and told me to be quiet. I tried to stay quiet. This was my first child, and I 'knew'.... my last child. I couldn't go through this again. I still didn't know what to expect... how do you have a baby?
They made me walk in the hall that evening, that night still... no baby. I was sitting 'Indian-fashion' on my bed, rocking my body back and forwards trying not to cry aloud. I kept looking at the older women in there.... no one told them not to cry or to be quiet. The pain was overwhelming, I tried to stay so quiet, but.. I moaned. I was afraid to make a noise... the nurse had told me to be quiet.
My mother and her husband had come up during the day. She walked with me ...up the hall, down the hall, up the hall................................... My mother told me that she was also, expecting twins. My mother wasn't much older than I... fourteen years older. Later, I found out she had a miscarriage.
I wished my mother was with me, they had left to drive 3 hours to get back home. They couldn't stay. I had two little brothers they had to get back to. No one was with me... I had to travel on this path alone.
That night late I was in agony sitting there on that bed... sitting crosslegged, rocking back and forwards. I was biting my hand trying hard not to cry aloud. That nurse had told me to be quiet. I felt my bed move! It was such a strange sensation .... like being in a dream ... such pain like I'd never known in my young life, and a feeling of moving like on the ocean! My bed felt like it dipped down and rolled. I thought it was me hurting so badly. This was November 19th, Wednesday night.
The next morning I was still in labor, I was taken down to see if my baby had to be 'taken'... I had no idea what they meant. Later I found out that they were deciding whether to take my baby because I wasn't having it like I should. They made me have him.
I was taken to the delivery room and placed on a bed ... they put each of my legs in stirrups... they strapped each ankle. I instantly began fighting .... the pain I was in combined with being trapped there was the most awful I'd ever experienced. A nurse brought me a washcloth with ice chips on it, that was the last I remembered.
Tommy was born on November 20, 1969 at 11:28 am. His little face was bruised all over. It was a hard labor, I had 40 stitches... I was made to have my baby. I didn't know the difference at that time... I didn't know anything about having babies. I was happy though... I wanted my baby!
Tommy weighed 8 lbs. 4 1/2 oz, and he was 21 in. long! I was small and he was a big, healthy baby. I couldn't hold him at first, I was in agony from the pain I was still experiencing. I couldn't wait to hold him in my arms. My son, my very own baby ...born on November 20, 1969. He had alot of hair, strawberry blonde hair. His little hand would hold onto my finger. I felt such fierce love for ... my child.
This was the beginning of life for Tommy. I remember when he was a month old, I was looking down at him thinking how much I loved him. He was lying there sleeping... I began crying and thinking 'what have I done'....... 'what have I done'?
I was thinking I had brought this precious little baby into this world to know pain, grief like I had felt already in my young life. I was so sorry I'd had Tommy... I knew how pain felt and I couldn't bear the thought of Tommy getting hurt physically, or emotionally as he began to grow up. What have I done? I cried my heart out while standing there.
As Tommy began to grow ... he began bumping his head, fall down as a small child will do as they learn to walk, to play... it would hurt my heart so much. I couldn't bear for Tommy to feel pain... I knew pain too well. I was very protective of him.
I also, couldn't bear for him to be dirty. He was the cleanest baby and little boy ever. His grandfather told me to let him get dirty sometimes, that all little boys should be able to play and get ... dirty. I would change his clothes whenever he did.
Life went on, Tommy became a toddler... a precious little boy who was so beautiful with his strawberry blonde hair and blue eyes. He learned to walk at 11 months old. I remember being so awed when he took his first steps in front of me! I was talking to a woman when he walked in front of me... it was so natural, that I almost didn't notice it! I was so awed at seeing my baby take his first steps! I began laughing, and I hugged him so tightly.
Tommy got his first haircut at the 'big boy' barber shop... he was one year old. I kept his strawberry blonde locks of hair from that haircut. He was a very handsome little boy with his 'big boy' haircut!
I found out later that on the night prior to Tommy's birth... when I thought the pain was making me feel like my bed was moving... there was an earthquake that night! Alot of babies were also, born that night ... I remember being told that the moon was full, also. I never saw it, I was in labor. I'd been in labor since Monday, November 17th when I was induced.
I never thought that my son would 'go before' me. It doesn't seem right for parents to outlive their children. I was crying when he was born, I never wanted him to feel any pain... Tommy went through so much in his life, he felt alot of pain both physically, mentally, emotionally. My precious son, how I've cried for you throughout your young life. I loved you with my very heart, my very being.... I couldn't protect you all through the years.
I 'saw' through all the young years of Tommy's life the pain he suffered....... the grief he was suffering over the suicide of the man who stepped out in front of his big truck before he died..... I 'saw why' I had stood there when he was a little baby and cried, wishing I'd never brought a little innocent, precious baby of mine into this world.
I never had another child, I had to wait 9 years before I could convince the doctor that I never wanted to have another child before getting the surgery to make sure I would never have another child. Now...... I'm glad I never had another child... though that means ... loneliness in 'old age'.
I'm sorry, Tommy, you experienced the grief you did in your life... I'll never forget looking at you as a little baby, crying... 'knowing' there wasn't any way I could always protect you. We all have to walk 'our own paths'... no matter that we wish to 'carry someone else' to keep them from feeling the pain... of life.
Tommy's gone, he can't hurt anymore, my baby, my son. He died May 29, 2010 on a beautiful Saturday evening.... running and playing with his little precious 3 year old son, Taban. The sun was shining, the waves were playing with his and Taban's feet as they ran on the sand at the ocean (Myrtle Beach).
Laughing, squealing with joy... feeling so light and free, wind blowing from the waves onto their faces.............I know my son was at his happiest for those 'last' moments.... the grief in his mind 'forgotten' ... his mind filled with such joy and happiness watching Taban... his little son he was so proud of.
Tommy was doing exactly what he was looking forward to doing when he stepped into heaven from that beach..... he was sharing his first time at the beach with his son. I know, because he told me the evening before... he wanted to do this. His smile was beautiful as he told me how he looked forward. I saw his sunshine smile in his blue-green eyes as he stood looking down at me. My tall, handsome, precious son... how proud I was of you, how I loved you.
I really miss my son with my heart. Tommy, I saw your little precious son today... today is his birthday (March 16, 2012). He is 5 years old... you never knew you wouldn't be here for him. I gave him 2 dragonflies I made in your memory..... I gave him a gold-wire heart with a tiny dragonfly on it, with different pendants that have little settings that sparkle on it.... I used my imagination when I made that gold-wired heart. At the top of it , I made your name 'Tommy' by bending and shaping the gold wire. He can hang it in his room.
I looked into Taban's little face, his blue eyes.... watching him smile that 'Tommy' smile .... I saw that mischievious expression like yours, son. What a precious child he is... so high-energy, so friendly, talkative.
He had on his little green sparkling St. Patrick's green hat. I hugged him .... Skip and Angie began to laugh.... on the side that I hugged him, my face was shining with glitter! I told Taban I wanted to hug him again so, I'd have glitter on the other side.
I hugged him and deliberately got glitter on the opposite cheek.... Granny Gee was shining .... glowing. Shining, reflecting happiness seeing her grandson.
Happy Birthday, Taban. I love you very much.
Colors As I Go
grief (32) only child (4) Scary (2) Boiled eggs (1) Distrust (1) Don't call me Faye (1) Dying (1) I hate to be called Faye (1) I'm afraid of the dark (1) Middle age woman (1) Pain that reaches the soul.. can't be seen (1) Running (1) Where did my youth go? (1) dying in a beautiful way (1) life is fragile (1) light on my path (1) my son (1)