Thursday, May 16, 2013

Childbirths 3

Sometimes God doesn't give you what you ask for. Sometimes he gives you more...

When the wife and I got married, we decided that we wanted two children, a boy and a girl, and that's what we prayed for. After Ericson was born, we now had the requested boy and girl...but God had other plans.

During Loida's pregnancy with Ericson, we told the doctor that we wanted Loida to be ligated in case we needed a Cesarean . If the delivery was normal then the ligation won't be done but, instead, I would have a vasectomy. It was all agreed upon by all parties present.

During Ericson's birth, the need for an emergency cesarean made everyone forget about the ligation and it was not done. The ob-gyn apologized but I said it was alright. Our minds were on different things back then. I would have to get a vasectomy.

I went to the company doctor to ask for referrals and advise but he reacted in horror the instant I said it. "You're too young to have it," he said. I wasn't aware of a lower age limit for this type of operation but he was very adamant. His most telling argument was, "what if something goes wrong with the operation?" I guess he got to me in a way because I hesitated to ask other doctors though the thought was never far from my mind.

In the meantime, the wife and I continued controlling which we seemed to be good at. Her monthly visits came regularly and we began to think a vasectomy was not really needed. For the next four years, things went well...until she missed her period. The pregnancy test was positive. The wife was a little upset. She was afraid of going through the same trauma as the last time. Besides, didn't we ask God for only two kids?

We visited the ob-gyn who predicted that Baby Number Three would be coming in the second or third week of September 2003, five years after Ericson. A few months into the pregnancy, we went for an ultrasound. This time I really saw the baby on the monitor. The doc let us see it for a few minutes before she started doing her measurements. She confirmed the expected date of birth at the second week of September.

All through the examination, Loida was silent, looking at the baby on the screen. I noticed a tear that dripped down the side of her face but she didn't say anything. Later, she admitted that seeing the baby filled her with a yearning for the child. I guess being a mother does that. Even if the baby was unexpected, seeing it for the first time will surely melt any mother's heart.

Then, about a month before the expected birth, I got an offer from the factory manager to go to Switzerland to attend an automation workshop. Thinking about my wife and the coming baby, I refused the trip, saying I couldn't leave my wife right then. When I got home that evening, I told the wife about the offer. She told me to call the factory manager right that minute and say that I was accepting. She would call her sister to stay with her while I was gone. This opportunity might not come again, she said.

So, I was going to Switzerland but I wanted to ask the doctor when the birth might actually happen. We explained the situation and she ordered another ultrasound to assess how much the baby had developed. Looking over the screen, she said that the baby could be delivered about two weeks before the previous estimated date. That meant I could be at the delivery and still go to Switzerland. It was a happy arrangement for all.

On August 26, 2003, Loida and I went to the hospital for the delivery. It wasn't going to be a normal one, though. It was going to be a C-section but, this time, it was planned. Loida would be ligated at the end of it, I reminded the doc. The date was also set to avoid the same problem we had with Ericson. August 27 was the day before the fiesta and the day when the streets would be clogged with parades. So the delivery was set the day before.

The procedure went off without a hitch and there was none of the long waiting like the last time. Loida was in and out of surgery and we were resting in our room in no time. The only problem that remained was what name to give our new daughter. Thinking of our two previous kids, we decided to stay with tradition and give her a name that started with E-R-I. The only name I could think of was Erin so that was the name we put in the certificate. About two weeks later, I was in Switzerland.

Erin arrived when I was almost 42 and Loida was 38. I jokingly tell her to study well but to get married immediately after graduating from college. That way I wouldn't be too old to walk her down the aisle. (",)

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