Wednesday, October 15, 2003

Stories Of My Birth

He not busy being born is busy dying
-Bob Dylan

My story. I was born dying. I came into this world weighing three pounds- two ounces and then dropped down to two pounds-eleven ounces. I was starving to death. My mother’s placenta was rotting away so I had not been getting enough nourishment in the womb. I was put into an incubator and stayed there for the next three-weeks, trying to decide if I wanted to stay in this world or not.

My mother’s story. She was back in her hospital room after giving birth to me when one of the nurses who helped in the delivery came in and while patting her hand, said, “ It’s ok, Mrs. Shannon, I baptized the baby for you.” My mother thought that was a strange thing for her to do but did not think anything more about it. Then a few minutes later the other nurse who had helped with the delivery came in, took my mother’s hand, and said, “It’s ok, Mrs. Shannon, I baptized the baby for you.” Now my mother was a little concerned, but she was still a little groggy after giving birth so what the nurse had said did not upset her too much. Next, her doctor came in and took her hand saying, “It’s ok, Jeannie, I did an emergency baptism on the baby.” At that point my mother realized something was wrong. She was 23 years old.

My father’s story. My father was in the Navy on a ship floating off the coast of Korea when he got a message that his wife had given birth to a baby girl who weighed three pounds-two ounces. My father went down to the ship’s galley and asked the cook to show him a three pound ham because he want to see how big a three pound baby would be. He was 25 years old.

These stories about my birth always make me smile. I don’t know why.

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