Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Lame to try even on an 8 year old

46 years ago this very early morning, my 3 sisters and I (age 8) were awakened and herded downstairs, while my Mom was giving birth to a baby. The baby was delivered by my Dad as my oldest sister (12) listened on phone to the doctor and relayed the instructions to Dad. Keep in mind that this was 1959 -- we had the typical 1 wall phone mounted on the kitchen wall with maybe a 3 foot cord, so my sister had to run up the stairs with the instructions. Now I don't remember her doing that and I only heard the phone bit a few years ago from my Dad.
I had no idea what was going on as it was 12:30 in the morning and Dad didn't really have much time to let us know what was happening. At some point, my Dad came down the steps with a shoe box and inside was a baby sister, all 3lb 2oz of her.
Sometime in the madness, my Dad's sister, who was a nurse, came over and the ambulance came too. At that point, we found out that there was another baby inside Mom and she and Dad were off to the hospital. My 3 sisters and I were transported over to my aunt's house. We had some milk and graham crackers and were fitted up with some sleeping arrangements. My aunt and uncle had 3 of their own kids at that time but they found spots for all of us to sleep. I ended up in the attic with an uncovered window to stare out. I laid awake for a very long time and saw the most wondrous show of shooting stars.
I was desperate for a brother, with 3 sisters already plus a new sister. Growing up Catholic in an area with a lot of Catholics, many of the families had a lot of kids. Dickie F's older brother was a batboy for the Reds and had a basement full of bats from the Reds and other major leaguers. There were Bobby, Davy and Stevy G. 3 houses up, one year apart from each other. Billy and Bobby L. were up the street, 1 year apart. And me, I had 3, now 4 sisters.
In the morning at breakfast, my aunt announced that there was another baby. I asked if it was a boy, and she said that it was another girl. 5 sisters! She then said that one of them was going to be called Jo, so that's almost like another boy. This was the only time that I didn't like this very sweet aunt.

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