I wanted to write this blog last Thursday, November 25, but Thanksgiving got in the way and distracted me a bit. Besides being Thanksgiving, however, it was also my Tally's 5th birthday. I felt the need to reminisce and retell the story of her birth. I'll spare you the unnecessary details...
It was Wednesday, November 23, 2005, and we were living in Baumholder, Germany. I was 37 weeks pregnant with our first baby, a girl whom we were naming after John's grandmother, Talmadge. At 5:00a.m. I was awakened by the unmistakable feeling of what had to be my water breaking. It startled me, and I sat up in bed. After a few minutes, I ran to the bathroom and became certain that it was indeed my water. After pacing around the house a few hundred times, I returned to bed with butterflies in my stomach (and a baby, of course) and waited for John's alarm to go off. Why? I don't know. But I did. Those 5 minutes seemed like an eternity. Finally, the loud beeping filled the room, and John groggily turned it off and sat up in bed. "My water broke," I said. "What? Are you sure?" he responded. "Pretty sure," I answered. "Ok," he said. "You pack your bag. I'm gonna run to the office and tell them where I'll be." Would most first-time fathers calmly go to work before taking their laboring wife to the hospital? Probably not. But I went with it. It was my first time too. We followed the plan. When he returned from work a good 30 minutes later, I had everything ready, and we jumped (well, nonchalantly walked) to the car. We drove the 20 minutes to the hospital, found our way to the Labor & Delivery floor, and spoke to a nurse. She conducted a test to see if my water was in fact broken, and she decided it was not. Nevermind the constant gushing of fluids that I was experiencing - oh, wait . . . I'm sparing the details. So anyway, we disappointedly drove back home. I attended a coffee (a social gathering for officers' wives) that night and was completely miserable. The gushing continued - sorry. The next day was Thanksgiving, and we had plans to celebrate with a potluck feast at our neighbor's house. Unfortunately, we never made it. We returned to the hospital, and a different nurse conducted the same test as the day before. She decided it was positive - my water was broken. But I already knew that. I was admitted to the hospital and induced because I had no contractions. I had a roommate, and I wish I could remember her name. She had just had a c-section and spoke enough English that we were able to communicate with each other. She was a minister at an amazing church in the nearby town of Idar Oberstein. The church was built into the side of a huge rock. Here's a picture:
Anyway, I digress. Six hours after I was induced, I was ready to move into the birthing room. It was more like a birthing suite with a queen size bed, a big bathtub, and a tangled rope hanging from the ceiling that came in very handy when the contractions became unbearable. I was determined to endure labor drug-free. A warm bath was the only relief. Eight and a half hours later, I was pushing. Little did I know that it began snowing around that time. I pushed for 45 minutes, and at 3:12a.m. on Friday, November 25, Talmadge Lee Martin was born. She weighed 6 lbs 9 oz and was 18.5 inches long. She was tiny and perfect in every way. She was a little yellow, but some bright lights and foam sunglasses took care of that. She came into the world with the snow. I would love to show you a picture of her, but that was two computers ago. I now have no digital copies.
Anyway, John deployed to Iraq two weeks later, but I figured things out real quick. I lived and learned through trial and error. He saw her again when she was 7 months old and was able to witness her crawl for the first time, and then he saw her again right before she turned 1. She quickly became a daddy's girl upon his return. Now she's 5. I don't know where those 5 years went, but they were worth every minute. The coolest part is that just like the snow came when she was born, it came again just before her big day ended last week. Just before midnight on the 25th, it snowed.
Tally, 7 months
Tally, 1.5 years
Tally, 2 years
Tally, 3 years
Tally, 4 years
Tally, 5 years