Monday, May 31, 2010

Remembering My Birth On Memorial Day

Memorial Day. Family get togethers, celebrating school end and the beginning of summer, pools, picnics, wafting smells off the grill, American Flags lining the streets of towns across the USA...these are a few signs that Memorial Day is in full progress.

Our family never lost a soldier on foreign soil. They all returned safely to their families. Grandpa died last year, he served as a medic in WWII. My Uncle died years ago, he had been in the Navy. My great granddaddy died when I was very young, he served in WWI, although a German he served on the Allied side. These are just a few from my family tree.

Daddy was drafted right after he married mommy. And right after he married mommy, they were pregnant with me. They left the Gulf Coast of Mississippi and moved to El Paso, Texas out to Fort Bliss. Mommy was very sick with me. Her blood is AB negative, mine is A positive...there's something deadly about that combination. Remember, I am old...we're talking about the early seventies before all these wonderful advances in medicine.

There's a handy dandy shot today of course that fixes this problem, but before now...negative blood mommies with positive blood babies was a huge dilemma. The Fort Blissian Doctors informed mommy and daddy that their child would be born with no hands, no feet and possibly be born with mental retardation. They encouraged mommy and daddy to abort and never give birth to this child.

Did I ever mention how stubborn I am? I fought that decision tooth and nail. I kicked and screamed, gave my mommy the worse morning sickness I possibly could. I jumped at the sound of my daddy's voice as he sang GI Blues to me. I sucked my thumb and nestled in. I planted my feet sternly against my mommie's back. I dug in and planned to stay.

I was born, despite what the Fort Blissian doctors suggested. And as mommy and daddy held me my very first day, they looked into the deepest bluest eyes of a most perfectly formed little girl and gave her a most fitting name. Joely Ann. Formed from my daddy, Joe, and my mommy Paula Ann.

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