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Author: Kandice Cruz
Title: The Happiest Days of My Life
Type of Work: story
Source: CMv1 #56

Copyright 2002 Kandice Cruz

We all have days that we consider to be the happiest days of our lives, and for me, I have three of them, March 2, 1990, August 18, 1995 and April 24, 2002.

On those dates my children where born. Alexis Nicole came first on March 2, 1990. I still remember that entire day as if it where yesterday instead of being almost 13 years ago.

I was due to have Alexis on Feburary 14, when she didn't come and didn't come, the doctors decided to induce labor and so I entered the hospital on March 1 to hopefully bring my first born child into the world. They began the pitocin in the IV drip that morning and that afternoon I had not progressed enough so they decided to break my water for me at 2:30 pm. Hard labor hit and for some reason the dialtion would progress on it's own. At 1:45 am on March 2 the doctors decided it would be to risky to let me go on any farther so they started to prep me for a C-Section. I began screaming that the baby was comming out and when they checked, sure enough they saw her trying to come out. Her head was stuck so they rushed me into the delivery room and used forcepts to help her come out. I remember hearing the doctor say that it was a girl and then I saw a bright light.

According to the medical records, my heart stopped and they began CPR on me, they ended up giving me a shot of adrinaline to bring me back. I was rushed to ICU and Alexis was 15 hours old before I got to hold her for the first time.

Years went by and I delighted in being a mother. Every smile, each new accomplishment, I thanked God for helping the doctors to bring me back so I could witness the joy of my child.

In 1995, on January 18 I discovered that I was pregnant again. They had set the due date for October 29. I didn't follow Doctors orders to remain in bed with this pregnancy and I worked that spring and summer at Sam's Nursery. This time I was a greenhouse manager of 16 greenhouses and also supervised the installation crews. My blood pressure shot dangerously out of control and on August 18 at 7:30 pm, my water broke. In a panic I went to the emergency room and at 11:58 pm, Mason Kane entered this earth. I got to hold him when he was still attached. After they cut the cord and took him to clean him up, I started to hemorage. They gave me all kinds of medications to stop the bleeding and once the bleeding stopped, I ended up getting a transfusion of 3 pints of blood to replace what I had lost.

I thanked God again for giving me another beautiful and healthy child even though Mason was premature. Alexis was so protective of the new baby that she would yell at our family members that tried to hold him that they needed to wash their hands before they touched the baby. For the first 4 months of his life, Alexis slept on a pallett next to the baby crib and if he made one bit of noise in the middle of the night she would jump up and hold his little hand and tell him he was going to be ok.

More years went by and I delighted in how close my children where to each other. When Mason began to walk, he would follow Alexis whereever she went. Alexis would slip him stuff of her plate and she would also feed him cookies in the mornings for breakfast.

When things between me and their father where getting really bad, Alexis would often wake up to Mason sleeping beside her in her bed with her hair in his fist. I remember hearing her telling Mason that no matter what happened, I always will love them and that they would have a Mother that loved them no matter what.

When I began to make plans to leave Texas and leave their father, he found the bags of clothes I had packed for myself and the two children. he told me that if I tried to take them, he would hunt me down and hurt me in front of them and make it so I never got to see them again.

After I moved, I got a court order for visitation rights and in early October the children flew from Texas to Chicago to visit me and Dan. (In September of 2001 September 4 to be exact, Dan and I discovered I was pregnant)So when the children where here, I sat them down and told them about the new pregnancy. Alexis was at first shocked, Mason was so happy and told me it had better be a boy. Then both children started making plans on their new sibling.

The doctors in Chicago sent for my medical records out of Texas and they did everything they could to ensure that when the time came for me to deliver the new baby, everything would be prepared in any case. When they took me off of caffine and Chocolate, at first I whined and moaned about it, but I did follow orders. When the doctors put me on partial bed-rest, I did just that. I wanted to make sure that when I delivered this child that there would be no complications.

I underwent labor pains for a good two to three weeks during the last part of my pregnancy. On April 23, the doctor stripped the membranes and told me to take a dose of castor oil. I did as I was told and was convienced I would be pregnant for the rest of my life. At 7:28 pm on April 23, Dan had just put a load of laundry in the washing machine and I was standing in the living room watching King Pin on Comedy Central and eating a box of croutons. All of a sudden, my water broke. Dan was in the kitchen washing the dishes to start dinner when I yelled to him that it was time to go. He asked me if I was sure and when I looked down at the puddle between my feet, I said "Oh yea, it's time!"

We went racing to the hospital and they admitted me. Dan wouldn't leave my side for a second even though I begged him to go and get himself something to eat. He pulled the reclining chair that was int he birthing room over to the bed and held my hand and told me he wasn't going anywhere. All that night while I labored, he would hold my hand and wash my face with a washcloth and tell me how much he loved me and that we are almost there.

At 10:00 am on April 24, the doctor came into the room to check on my progress. I begged for an epidural and I got one. at 10:58 I told the nurse that I felt the urge to push and she ran and got the doctor. The doctor came into the room and said, "Are you ready?" When I told her I was, things went into action. Coltrane Ellis was born at 11:16 am that morning. They placed him on my chest before the cord was cut and he lifted his head and looked into my eyes with the biggest set of blue eyes I had ever seen. His eyes where a navy blue and at that moment, I looked at Dan and we kissed. Dan cut the cord and the doctor cleaned me up while I held that precious baby.

On July 5, 2002, Alexis and Mason came to Chicago after they had gotten out of Church Camp in Texas. Dan, Cole and I where at the airport to meet them, the first thing that Mason did when he came up the runway was to go straight to his little brother in the stroller and he leaned over and kissed him. I grabbed Alexis and hugged her to me as tight as I could. Then I placed Cole into the arms of his big sister and Dan snapped the picture of the first time Alexis held Cole. When Cole looked at Alexis with those incredible baby blue eyes of his, I could tell her heart melted.

The entire time that Alexis and Mason where here, they fought over who changed Cole's Diapers and who's turn it was to hold his bottle. Mason would carry Cole around the house if I didn't keep an eye on him and make him sit down to hold Cole.

On our wall in the living room is a picture of the three most precious days of my life sitting on a park bench in Lincoln Park Zoo here in Chicago. Alexis has her arm around Mason and Mason is holding Cole on his lap and all three have the biggest smiles I have ever seen. Each time Cole sees that picture he begins to smile. I can't wait for each one of them to have the same sort of happiness that they have brought me.