Beautiful Sean at 17
I know I've told the story before, probably a hundred times at least, but I can't help it, and I never get tired of telling it because it's a good story. My beautiful Sean came into the world today, seventeen years ago. He was born just two hours and seven minutes into the sign of Aries, but he's definitely a Pisces soul, as I rarely see any Aries in him at all. His due date was on the 17th of March, St. Patrick's Day, but he didn't bother to show up until the first day of Spring (or at least it was the first day of Spring that year), and even though it bounces around from year to year, I call this big man of mine my Spring baby. And I gave him an Irish name, in honor of his due date.
Coming into the world proved to be a difficult task for Sean. He was overdue by four days and on top of that was a big baby (10 lbs. 7 ounces). I labored for a good solid two days with him, then was given Pitocin to help speed up the delivery process. Once he was born, though, I noticed something not quite right, it was something I could not put my finger on, but I could not rest because of it and, as a result of my restlessness, kept asking the nurses in the maternity ward to check him to see if he was all right. I was told several times he was, and yet... I knew he wasn't. It was instinctual. You think you've no idea how to be a mom, you think you will not know what to do once they arrive, but you do know. It is inside you, it is there, and you know. Not about to give up, I asked for the head nurse to come and check on Sean for me, and it's a good thing I did because she discovered all was not well with my baby - and it was the scariest moment of my life and remains so to this day, when I saw the look on her face after she listened to Sean's heart through her stethoscope. From that point on, things became a sort of slow motion blur for me. Having had Sean in a hospital that didn't have an NICU (never again), he was quickly hooked up to wires and heart monitors and soon afterwards transferred to another hospital that did have the proper facilities and equipment to treat him. I will never forget the space aged looking incubator they put him into to transport him, via ambulance, or the polaroid photographs the nurse who came to retrieve him took of him, then handed to me just before he left with my baby. The thought of those photographs to this day send chills through my body. I knew what they were for, they were a "just in case" sort of thing, a just in case my baby didn't survive - then at least I would have photographs of him while he was still alive. It wasn't very encouraging. And I still cry to this day whenever I tell Sean's story.
There is no man on the earth more amazing and important to me than Dr. Tong. He is the reason Sean lived. The reason my baby is now turning another year older. Thank God for Dr. Tong. I do. Always.
Sean had to be defibrillated three times in order to get his little heart to beat the normal amount of beats per minute, because as it stood before Dr. Tong intervened, Sean's heart was beating in excess of two hundred fifty beats per minute, and his lungs were filling up with fluid, slowly drowning him.
He was placed in NICU amongst all the tiniest of babies there, a huge baby himself, but a very sick one indeed. It was touch and go for the first twenty four hours, but after that my big man decided he could do it and he began the journey back to health. I remember he had small burn marks on his little chest, from the defibrillator, which made everyone feel badly for him, everyone but me. I instead marveled over the marks, touched them and traced them with my finger tips, and thanked God for them, for they were part of the reason my child survived. And he did survive. Thankfully so.
Six days later I got to bring my baby home. Seventeen years later I get to tell his story again, and cry, and thank Dr. Tong, and God, for blessing me with such a beautiful child. I am so thankful.
Sean, thank you for choosing me as your mom this time around. Thank you for trusting me with your gorgeous soul. You are so beautiful. I love you with every beat of my heart, my beautiful big man.
Happy "17th" Birthday.