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Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Moments Of Transformation

I was taking place in an online discussion the other day and the topic was "transformation" in our lives. It had me really thinking of the moments that stand out when I think of the word transformation.

I remember key moments from all parts of my life. Childhood memories, friendships, deaths of loved ones and all the normal things, but there are some moments that are so profound they have the power to totally change you in some way.

One of my first major transformations, was the day I met the Mr. We were in high school, senior year for him and sophmore for me. School had started scarcely a month prior to the night the band found them selves stuck on the bus because it had rained really bad and the band director would not let them take the field and get mud all over their uniforms because we had a band competition the next day. I didn't play in the band.... I was the aide.. yes I was a band aide! :) My job included making sure the "flag girls" dresses were smoothed and no one's skirt was tucked into their pantyhose. Once the band was on the field I, along with another aide, laid out the flags and other props for them and the majorettes, throughout their routines.  So anyway, on that particular night we were stuck on the bus. I was at the very back with the flag girls and we were laughing and having a good time. A friend of mine that played trumpet came back and told me there was someone she wanted me to meet so I followed her to the middle section of the bus.... It sounds corny, but The second I looked at him, it was like lightening hit me. He literally had me from hello!  I didn't even know if he had a girlfriend or anything, but I knew we were meant to be. We have been together since that night and less than two weeks after that meeting, I KNEW he was the one I would marry. I was all of 16 years old! Years later, we were talking and I told him of the impact I felt that night and he told me the same had happened for him. He went on to say that less than two weeks later, he was convinced he was going to marry me one day! I hadn't even told him that part! How's that for cool!

The second time I felt transformed was my wedding day. We had done all the planning ourselves and we were doing it our way. We weren't into lots of tiny details, we just wanted it to be fun, but it took time and planning that kind of kept me distanced from it a little bit. We had been together since that moment we met in high school five years previous and we were getting married on that 5 year anniversary. The months flew by with him working and the wedding planning and decisions we had to make. The next thing I knew, the day had arrived. My bridesmaids were my sister and his sister. They along with my mom, helped into my gown, placed the veil and put on my shoes.... when I turned and saw myself in the mirror it hit me. My reflection looked totally different to me. I felt a change deep inside. It wasn't that I was the bride. It was that I was going to be someone's WIFE. I had always believed that word was FOREVER and in that moment I was looking at my forever self. It was immensely emotional. It changed the way I thought of myself. He chose me. That funny, beautiful boy that had put up with my crazy self for 5 years wanted ME. FOREVER. The thought didn't scare me. It amazed me. It has been one heck of a ride, not always an easy one, but we are still married. We will mark our 22 wedding anniversary (27 years together!) in just a few days. 

The third major time I felt totally transformed was the birth of our son. We had to undergo fertility treatments for several years and it had been an emotional roller coaster. I had miscarried once and the whole process had taken a toll on me physically and emotionally. I had a scare at six weeks and we thought I was miscarrying again. A few days after that incident, the Mr's grandfather died. I can't even imagine how hard that was for him. He was trying to be strong for me, scared we would lose another baby and then his beloved grandfather, who had helped raise him and been a pivotal figure in his life, died. In the midst of it all, he was everything I needed him to be and more. Because I was considered a risky pregnancy, I was seen three times a week by my fertility doctor throughout the first trimester. After that I was allowed to go to a regular OB/GYN and we chose one in the same hospital because he would be able to be in direct contact with our fertility doctor is anything happened. The hospital complex we had to go to is an hour away from where we live. He made sure we never missed an appointment, never had to reschedule, we were never even late to one. We attended birthing classes in the same complex, never missing one. He paid attention took notes asked more questions than I did! We thought we were totally prepared to have our child and we were planning to do things with as little medicine as possible. We had discussed everything with my doctor so he was on board about not giving me pitocin and such. After that initial scare and up to the point that I was actually lying in the hospital bed, our pregnancy story had been a great one and looking back even funny. The contractions got hard enough that all the tricks we learned in birthing class were not helping. But I was also not progressing and was still only a few centimeters dilated. We allowed the nurse to give me some pain medicine in my IV, but warned her that I was super sensitive to all meds because I don't usually take anything. She didn't believe us. I was knocked out before she withdrew the needle from the shunt! I woke up several hours later to find that I had been having super hard and long contractions and still was not much further along. My doctor came and checked on me and found that our little guy had turned away from the birth canal and the contractions were now banging his head into my pelvic bone. While he was still in the room talking about what we could do, the baby's vitals took a dip and the whole game changed. I was going for a C-section that we had not planned on. It scared me. I cried. My Mr was scared. My parents were scared. My in-laws were scared. It was etched on all their faces. They gave me the epidural, gave us a few minutes with family while they prepped an OR for us. I remember prayers, people taking my hands, hugs kisses... and then I was in a room about to be sliced into...I wasn't hysterical, but I wanted to watch the procedure. I didn't want my baby to die without me never having seen him breath. I wanted them to take down the screen that had been put up over my midsection. The wouldn't. When someone reached up and moved the giant light with the shiny metal hood closer so the doctor would have more light, I saw that I could see everything almost perfectly in the reflection. It was surreal to watch all that work being done on my body because I couldn't feel a thing. They got the baby out just fine, but he didn't cry. I waited to hear that cry. They huddled around him. The Mr. was with me and holding my hand. I heard them say they needed to get him to the nursery right away. I thought the worst. Mr wanted to stay with me, but I made him go. I told him not to leave our baby's side! After they left with the baby the doctor began stitching me up and the nurse that was by my head told me the baby was okay, but was jaundiced and they needed to get him under a light. I had done all I could and there was nothing more I could do at that moment. I suddenly felt so unbelievably tired and dozed off. I was awakened by the nurse tapping my cheeks, saying my name and asking if I was okay. I said "Of course I'm okay! I'm just so damn tired!" I woke up in recovery. I asked what time it was and told the nurse I needed my baby. She told me I would see him soon and said no you don't understand. It's been an hour and I need to feed him! 

The moment that beautiful bundle was placed in my arms, everything else vanished because I looked at that tiny little head sticking out from a wad of blanket and it was the most awesome feeling. I hadn't just had a baby, I was someone's MOM. FOREVER. Another FOREVER word added to my resume! I'll be his mom FOREVER. I was transformed in an instant. I knew I had just accepted responsibilities and challenges completely foreign to me, but it didn't matter. He was so beautiful and perfect. Well almost. He did have three little bruises on his forehead where he had whacked into my bone :) 

The major transformations in my life have been the biggest and best moments I could have ever hoped for even if the journey to them was at times a little rocky and uncertain.  

What events have transformed you?

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