Today Lucy turned three years old... my memories of that day are a little hazier, and I have to wonder what I'll be left with as the years go by, to remember that experience. I was anxious and excited, fairly well-prepared for the technical aspect of having a baby, but the pain was something else! It was late, dark, and I wanted Mr. Anesthesiologist to stop by but they kept telling me he was doing this or that, while I progressed to 10 cm. I can just imagine the nurses at their station saying, "let's just see if she can make it to 10 without the epidural, she's doing great and she doesn't have far to go...". Of course I have no idea if they actually said anything like that, but I have to wonder why my repeated requests for the epidural hadn't actually been met. They let me go long enough that eventually I got crabby and was insisting that Ron contact a nurse and make this thing happen... I could not muster the will to press the button and talk to someone myself, I was too busy trying to rip my pillow in half. Finally I got it, just before my last check, only to find that it was time to push! Good thing we have great insurance - because it was too late to help me anyway, but darn it, I got that epidural!!! I believe there were at least 10 people in there. My OB-GYN was there, but hanging back much of the time, while my LD nurse did most of the work (things went relatively smoothly). I think someone ordered a party sub. I didn't really care, I was a little preoccupied and apparently it was a slow night on that floor, so I figured hey, come on in! It seemed like they were all as anxious as we were to find out if it was a boy or a girl (could be my perception was skewed by hormones, but they really did seem genuinely excited as they cheered me on). Maybe Ron can remember better! I don't remember much, other than Lucy being put on my chest in the dark delivery room, her dark eyes wide open and looking at me!
Fast-forward three years and I'm even more proud - not of that event - but our amazing daughter and how she has developed her unique personality, her moods, her intelligence, and all her abilities. She's so healthy and smart, and we couldn't feel more blessed. As she gets a little bit older, and shows her own imperfections, it is just a reminder that we created a real person who is no longer that clean slate of an infant. She will continue to grow and change, and meet challenges, struggle, win, lose, get hurt, make mistakes, triumph, and all those complexities of life and living. Sometimes I miss cuddling with a tiny newborn who can't squirm out of your arms, but who she is becoming is so much more exciting than who she was.