Saturday, February 5, 2011

Welcome To The Hood

I was the first of my friends and family to have kids.  This fact has made it a bit difficult being a lone mom over the years.  My sisters and BethAnnDoddKoehn weren't too far behind me though, and soon I was able to chat with them about all things baby and kids.  That helped.  Unfortunately, my sisters live thousands of miles away which meant play dates were out of the question.  Beth is closer, but still not "let's hang out tomorrow" closer.  Plus there was that time period of her living in TX.  Whatever BADK.   All of my friends who lived close by weren't any closer to having kids, most of them not even married yet.  This is L.A.  Most people don't get married until after 30, let alone have kids.  I was an exception.  I did manage to meet some new mom friends by going to Gymboree, gymnastics and even school.  But the girls I know best, and like to hang out with most, the ones I've been friends with since college were still baby free.  I did feel lonely at times, but I figured sooner or later they'd get to it, I was just hoping it would be before my girls went to college.

Last May, on Mother's Day in fact, I talked to my best friend Melissa.  I knew she and her husband had been trying to get pregnant for a few months and I'm not sure why, but I kinda knew.

"Are you pregnant?" I asked.  There was silence on her end.  Then,

"Yes, but I only took the test this morning, so I'm not thinking about it yet!"

Now she has to think about it.  Kennedy Annette Bramlett was born last Thursday, January 27th.  She was 12 days overdue and weighed a huge 9lbs 4oz.  Melissa is not a big girl and I have no idea how she got a baby out of her that big, but she managed it.   The reason I didn't talk about this sooner, and the reason I was scarce a bit from writing last week, was because poor Kennedy had to spend her first days of life in the NICU.

Fortunately, it was nothing very serious, although that's not the way the doctors originally presented it to Melissa and her husband.   I think some doctors find it fun to be overdramatic and scare people.  Like the doctor who told my sister, Beth, that Grace had Cystic Fibrosis.  That was a fun few months.  Turns out she does not.  The doctor read the results wrong.  Nice.

Anyway, Kennedy had swallowed and aspirated meconium when she was born, and was taken to the NICU shortly after arriving in the world.  She had some breathing problems and a few complications.  It was something that was scary, but certainly not unheard of.  Melissa and Scott were understandably freaked out.  I mean there's nothing like being in labor for 24 hours, giving birth to your  baby and then a couple hours later being told something is wrong.  Not the picture you have in your head of your first moments with your first baby.   Last Friday I went to the hospital to see Melissa and Scott, to offer support and lunch and to see for myself how the baby was.  After taking one look at her, I quickly realized that she was going to be just fine.  She looked healthy, strong and very pink!  With antibiotics and some oxygen she got better within days.  Yesterday they were able to bring her home from the hospital.

I have known Melissa since college.  We've lived together, worked together, and get our hair done together.  We've helped each other through break ups and hard times, as well as new loves and party times.  She was in my wedding, and I was supposed to be in hers (thanks to Georgia, I couldn't make it).  She was one of the first people I told when I found out I was pregnant each time.  (Especially when I got pregnant with G and had to back out of the wedding).  She is even Sonya's Godmother.  If something good happens I call her, something bad I call her.  When I need to bitch about family, kids, husband, whatever, she is there.  And it works both ways.   I have two sisters who I have always been close with and love with all my heart.  Melissa, over the years, had become more like a sister who I love just as much.  When this happened to her last week, I felt just like I did when my own sister went through her horrible time delivering Gracie so early.  At least this time I was close enough to visit and help out.

Most of the time when friends go in different directions with their lives, like one having kids and one not, the friendship tends to fizzle.  But Melissa and I managed to still hang out and stay connected.  She may not have always understood what I was going through or what it was like, but she was always there to listen.  And for that I thank her.  Now I'm so excited that I get to share with her what this crazy ride of parenting is like.  I can't wait for all the stories of what new things her baby is doing, and get together for birthdays and playtime.  The good thing for her is that  I have six years working experience I can hand down, if needed.  Something I couldn't get from any of my friends, but would have been helpful.  Just today I got this messege from her on my phone.

"My baby does not want to sleep at night.  At all.  Not that I'm surprised."

Welcome to the Hood, Melissa!  The Hood of the Mothers.  (Much like the King of all Burgers, but sooo much more work.)  Congrats friend!  You're in for the craziest, best, worst, funnest, silliest, most frustrating, loving and enjoyable time of your life.  Thanks for sticking around me and my crazies all these years.

And let me not forget the most important part:

Welcome to the world baby Kennedy!  You've got three little girls anxious to entertain you on your first play date.  

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Welcome to Baby Kennedy! Congrats to "Jubes" (her name when I was first introduced to her). Welcome to the club! Let me just say from experience...Aunt Kristi is a wealth of wisdom!!