Wednesday, November 16, 2016

High Five to 35!!

Happy 35th Birthday to ME!

Today is my 35th birthday and I'm not exactly sure how that happened.  

It seemed like I was just turning 21 the other day.  I have always loved celebrating my birthday and have the happiest birthday memories from my childhood.  My mom always made chocolate cupcakes with chocolate frosting and she'd pipe my age on top in pink.  Same thing every year.  I loved it!

I've been on lots of adventures and have so many things to be thankful for as I look back on all of my 35 years.  Lots of expected things - going to IU, becoming a teacher, getting married to Kevin, teaching elementary school, etc.  And plenty of unexpected, wonderful surprises along the way - Utah, 1st home in Mississippi, being a stay at home mom and moving back to Indiana.   I used to think of 35 as so old, but now I'm thinking 35 is YOUNG.  I guess getting older does that to you :)

34 was a year of big changes for our family.  All good changes, but moving, new house and new baby in one year is a lot.  I'm thinking 35 is going to be a quieter year.  It's been a LONG time since I had a quiet year since we've either moved, lived in a new city or had a new baby for the past several years so we'll see what the coming year has in store for me.

The highlights of year 34 were:
1. Buying our first house in Indiana March
2. Having a healthy baby boy in March
3. Our annual road trip to the beach as a family of four in May
4. Moving into our house after months of work in July (thanks Dad!)
5. Making new friends and settling into our new city

I've been enjoying fun birthday things all week long and am hoping to celebrate tonight with me not cooking dinner and eating some cheesecake for dessert.  Should be a fun day!  Olive has been singing Happy Birthday Dear Mama to me all week long.

A few things I'm hoping will happen in year 35 for me:
a road trip to a new city, 
day trip to visit friends, 
new church,
head to the beach,
keep working hard on healthy habits
and to keep working hard to make friends and enjoy our city

My bloggy friend Sarah asked her parents to write out her birth story for her birthday this year and I loved her idea so much that I asked my parents to do the same.

I'd heard stories over the years and I knew I'd arrived a MONTH early, but I really wanted to hear my birth story from their perspectives.  I loved reading them and will treasure their stories forever.
Here are some of my favorite parts & pictures...


You were my first pregnancy and the pregnancy went very smoothly for the 8 1/2 months that I carried you.  I probably gained 20 lbs. or less and things were pretty uneventful.  

The pregnancy continued and I remember my November appointment where he did an exam and told me that even though I was due in early December, I most likely would not deliver until late December, after Christmas.  My plan was to work through Thanksgiving and then prepare the nursery and get things ready for your arrival.  I had had a couple of ultrasounds and both times they predicted that you were a girl but the quality of the photos was extremely poor. They told me things looked fine, but it was really hard to tell anything from the photos.

My sisters Carol and Jo and sisters-in-law Vera and Karen hosted a family baby shower at Carol's home on November 15th, 1981. That was a Sunday.   I remember wearing a maroon jumper and a pink turtleneck. I don't remember specific gifts but, at that time, people bought neutral clothing for gifts. 

When I arrived home from work on the 16th, I made Campbell's soup for dinner and we were going to eat quickly and then go to Lamaze class.  I did eat quickly but then things started happening and I knew something was wrong.  I told Marv that I was bleeding and told him we needed to get to the doctor to see what was going on.  He made a comment and said "You're not going to have the baby are you?"  Heck no, I wasn't planning to have the baby but something was definitely wrong. 
He called Dr. Cobb's office and thankfully he was still there because he was always seeing patients late. Ha! He said for us to come to the office as soon as possible.  I don't remember much about the drive but they did get us in to see him right away.  He examined me quickly and then told us to head to labor and delivery and that he would be there very soon. His office was close to the hospital. I was in shock but we did just that.
So, there I the hospital.......ready to baby anything.  Your dad was nervous too and neither of us knew what to think or do.  This was 35 years ago so cell phones had not been invented.  To call any of our family was a long distance call and we just didn't do that unless we had to.  Your dad was sitting on a stool of some kind and somehow managed to fall off it.  Needless to say, I started laughing and could not stop

Dr. Cobb arrived and examined me again.  He told me I had not dilated and that he would have to do a C-section.  I had just eaten dinner which isn't recommended right before surgery.  Things happened quickly from that point on.  The surgery was emergency and they took me to the operating room and I was out completely.  Fathers were not allowed to be in the room for delivery at that time so your dad was by himself waiting.  
The next thing I remember was coming to and seeing him and he was telling me we had a baby girl and that he had told everyone your name was Whitney Layne.  We had talked about the name Whitney and the name Brittney.  I loved the name Layne because there was a show called Flamingo Road that I watched with a pretty dark haired lady named Layne as one of the stars.  So we hadn't decided for sure that was your name, but he made it official. 
I also awoke to the news that our pastor from church was there,David Welsh,  and also our friends, Vicki and Darrel Dunlap.  They all got to see you before I did.  I was not happy about that but your dad had called them because he was all by himself and they lived close.  To this day, Vicki reminds me that she saw you before I did.  :(  She is still a good friend though and it is funny now to think about it. 

But, I finally got to see you and hold you and you were beautiful.  And you were ok!  You were 6lbs. 2oz and 19 inches long.  You had dark hair and looked so cute in your pink gown.  You were tiny but weighed enough that you needed no special care.  Your dad was taken with you immediately and due to the c-section and the shock of becoming a mom instantly when I was so unprepared, he took care of changing any diapers and holding you constantly.  When he did call the family to let them know of your arrival, no one believed him.  All the family had been together the day before for the shower, so it took a while for him to convince them that you really were here.........way before expected. 

Although all of this happened 35 years ago, the day of your birth is a day I will never forget.  You were an easy baby and we have loved being your parents.  As you grew you were always compliant and easy going and made parenting easy.  Now we have the joy of watching you with your babies.  The years have gone by so quickly but we know God blessed us the day you were born and has continued to bless us in ways we never could have dreamed.  Life is good.

You being our first brought plenty of concerns and worries with no real idea of what to expect.  The doctor visits were always long and never on time due to deliveries and other emergencies.  Dr. Cobb soon became not your Mother's favorite.  He always seemed more interested in what I had been doing (policework) than you and your mother.  The Lamaze class was the thing to do at the time.  I don't remember if I always got to go or not, but November 16th  was supposed to be our last class and we would be trained and ready to be parents!  Not really... the whole process seemed scary to me so I can't image being the mother.

Nancy worked that day, but when she got home something was obviously wrong.  Time to skip Lamaze class and head to the doctor's office.  We were scared and the urgency of the medical staff did not help.  Clearly things were happening that were not expected.  The next hour or so was a blur as we went to the hospital to prepare for an emergency c-section. 

There was not much humor or light heartedness in the room.  I tried to be a comfort and reassuring by rolling up a stool close to her bed.  I promptly fell off the stool which if you can imagine caused her to laugh along with the tears.

I don't think dads were allowed in for surgery then even under non-emergency births so I waited as you two went away.  I am sure that time did not pass quickly, but the doctor did reappear to assure me that you both were going to be okay.  Relieved, excited and being a new dad were all pretty overwhelming.

Your mom's recovery seemed to take a long time.  Somehow I managed to get into trouble for telling family and friends about your birth before your mother recovered enough to know what was going on.  I guess we really did not fully understand the danger to both of you until later.

You were special from the start.  Spending your first week in the hospital was not ideal, but your mother needed the help and recovery time.  We were (are) proud parents and couldn't wait to load you up and take you everywhere.  Thanks for being a good baby, daughter, wife and mother.

Thanks for reading!!
Have you ever heard or read your own birth stories??

35 is going to be great!!


  1. I love that you have your birth story written out! That's priceless! Happy birthday!!! Hoping all of your wishes for 35 come true :)

  2. Happy birthday! I love that you asked your parents to write out your birth story, too! Did you cry reading what they wrote because I definitely cried reading what my parents wrote me haha!
    Sarah at MeetTheShaneyfelts

  3. This is such a sweet post! Happiest of birthdays to you and I'm in Indiana too!!!

  4. Happy birthday, friend! Here's to a great year! What a TREASURE to have your birth story! I only know bits and pieces of mine.

  5. Happy Birthday - your baby photos are cracking me up they look just like all of mine - from 1981! I'm 35 in a month! Hope you have a magical day! :)

  6. Happy happy happy 35th birthday friend!!!! Hope you are showered with lots of love today!!😘😘😘

  7. Oh so sweet to hear it from your parents' perspectives! Happy Birthday!!

  8. Aw this is such a sweet post! Happy Birthday, friend! I can't believe you're 35, you look like you're still in your early 20's! :)

  9. Happy Birthday sweet friend!! And I just LOVE LOVE LOVE hearing from your parents. What a joy you are to them!

  10. Such a great post! Happy Birthday Whitney!!! I've been meaning to tell you that all day. I hope you had the best time celebrating!

  11. Such a great post! Happy Birthday Whitney!!! I've been meaning to tell you that all day. I hope you had the best time celebrating!

  12. I love this so much and much to my parents' dismay, I'll now be asking for an official written birth story from them! hah They have until Fletch's bday to complete : ) I was also an emergency c section baby so I think some parts of it, the parts I know anyways, will read somewhat similar to yours! I hope you had the happiest birthday! xo

  13. Oh I love this. I need to ask my parents to tell me my birth story. I honestly don't know many details so I think it would be lots of fun to hear all the details. I somehow missed this post when it came out so I'm glad I found it so I could hear their takes on your birthday.


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