The Unexpected

Quiet time with my parents, husband and two sleeping children under three years old. Mantel clock ready to bong. Twelve o’clock toast and a Happy New Year 1963 would begin..
With two weeks until the expected birth of my third child, Mom and I had prepared for New Years Day. Being blessed with a large extended family we were ready to celebrate the New Year. Lasagna was made; sausage and peppers were cooling, cookies and wine stood ready. Tomorrow we would continue the cooking and setting the table. Candle sticks and fine silver would be used. The table cloth, a wedding gift of fine linen with branches of gold thread, would be placed across the elongated table.
For now my bed was calling, “Cecelia come to sleep.” Like a sleep walker I kissed my parents good night. A sigh, as my foot touched the first step, like a cat’s tail caught under a rocking chair, I howled. The labor pains took me by surprise. We called my parents to come back as the pains were not stopping.
Greeted by a landscape of snow and ice we began the trip to Jamaica Hospital, our destination. Our horn blaring in hopes that we would see a police car to escort us, no one was on the road. Getting to the hospital my husband said. “I need to find a parking spot”. As I shrieked “let me out ” my husband parked.
Getting into the hospital I heard “the doctor is not here.” As he came in he asked, “What are you doing here Its New Years Eve, and I was at a party.” Not words I cared about. What felt like three mule kicks in my back, my daughter Carolyn was born. It seemed as if the stars had shattered the sky and all I could hear was the sweet sound of new life. Welcome Carolyn, Happy New Year!
-by Cecelia Tumminello De Luso ( Author of Remember Me Young & Sicilian Life Beyond the Veil)

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