And the child that is born on the Sabbath day
Is bonny and blithe, and good and gay
Just about 22 years ago to the minute, I went into labor. As with tonight, it was a Saturday night. Big Red and I were watching SNL when it started. Seventeen hours, zero drugs, and much screaming later, Henry finally emerged. It was not a good start, a home birth gone awry, a panicked midwife who needed to stop for a smoke break in the midst of it all, more than a couple of nightmare moments, and a house full of paramedics and cops. He nearly didn't make it, spent the better part of a week in Cardinal Glennon's NICU in St. Louis. That was about the shittiest week of my life, and I still can't pass by the St. David's truck-- the one with the huge photo of the NICU baby on the side-- without spontaneously bursting into tears.
To everyone who helped-- to get him here, to keep him here, to bring him up right-- I say thank you. THANK YOU. What an amazing creature he is. This is the first time in 22 years that I won't be spending Henry's birthday with him. The first year in a dozen or so that I won't be making the dark chocolate cake with raspberry filling and fresh whipped cream on top. Young man has up and moved to Brooklyn, making his way in the world, doing what he needs to do.
What an honor and a pleasure and a thrill to call you son, son. Honey, I love you! Thanks for being born. (And, as I mentioned, this year I will go ahead and have Rebound play the role of you in our beloved, traditional birthing reenactment. I'll get dad to film it for you, don't worry.)