It was October 25th. Our baby was five days overdue. We were both excited beyond words to meet our baby. The doctor had increased my monthly visits to weekly visits in order to monitor any beginnings of labor. When he increased our weekly visits to Tuesday and Friday visits we knew the time was getting close.
Every night we went to bed anticipating waking to labor and rushing to the hospital. Every morning I woke to make my way up from bed and “waddle” through my daily routine. My tummy was finally as big as it had been with our first pregnancy.
My back ached and my belly itched. I was glad to be semi-secluded with Larry at home where I could wear comfortable clothes and be bare footed.
We took long walks through the orchards trying to get labor to start. Someone told me long hot showers would work so I took long hot showers. I got really clean but labor didn’t start. We finally gave up. We decided to enjoy the last few days we would have just being the two of us. We knew life was going to change. We hadn’t even met our little one yet and all our future plans revolved around our baby. These last few days were just ours.
Larry was in his little shop working on his Model T. I took my pellet gun and a handful of Bazooka Bubble Gum outside. I walked toward the canal behind the house in search of an easy target for my cats’ dinner. I mention the bubble gum because I craved three things during that pregnancy. I craved bubble gum, bologna sandwiches, and Eskimo Pie ice-cream bars.
I chewed bubble gum like a chain smoker smokes cigarettes. The funny fact is until I was pregnant I hated bologna and refused to ever eat it. I have eaten it ever since. Even now Larry will go to National Market, our favorite little grocery store to buy their bologna. We will eat sandwiches made of white bread, bologna, and potato chips. I still love them!
I stopped by the shop to let Larry know where I was going to be for the next few minutes. When I turned to leave my calico cat ran to greet me. She had seen the gun and knew a treat was soon to be hers. I bent down to give her a quick pet across her back. As I bent down she walked forward just out of arms length. I stretched to reach her and lost my balance. I tried my best to regain my balance but, kerplop, down I went like a bowling pin!
I landed on my belly. My belly landed on a huge patch of puncturevine stickers. My belly was so big I was like a turtle stuck on its back. I called Larry but he was already reaching down to help. When he got me to my feet we dusted off my clothes. We raised my blouse to dust off my belly. I guess I had rolled forward when I landed. The very top of my tummy was covered in goathead stickers and they were stuck in good and tight.
Larry helped me pick the stickers out of my feet and we hurried to the house. I can’t remember which of us called the doctor. We were afraid the fall might have hurt our baby and asked the doctor what we should do.
I like to imagine the look on the doctors’ face when we told him my tummy was covered with stickers and asked him what we should do. His answer was priceless. “Well, I’ll see you in three days at your appointment but I think if I was you I’d pick the stickers out today!”
Dr. Bigelow was a very wise man.