Twenty Four years ago, yesterday, my wife woke me up with, "get up, we gotta go to the hospital, NOW"!! It was 5 AM, or there abouts. She thought she had embarassed herself a week earlier with a 'false' start to the hospital to have a baby and she wasn't going to let it happen again.
This was her third child. Her water broke, and so she decided to curl her hair, put on make-up, call the hospital, and then wake me up. She should have skipped the first two. When she called the nurse at the hospital, and explained the part about this is her third child, her water broke, and the contractions were 4 minutes apart, the nurse said, "Do you realize how big of a hurry you're in"?? Driving down I remember the almost constant Lamaze pants and the words, "Oh Cliff, hurry".
Twenty Five minutes to the hospital took about twenty. I dropped her off at the Emergency Room. I parked the car, walked the half block to the door (small town hospital) and a nurse met me. "Did you want to be in the room when the baby is born"? I said "yes, I guess I do". She threw a gown at me and said "put that on and get in there or you're going to miss it".
I almost did miss it. I hadn't been in the room more than about two minutes and we heard the glorious crying of a new life.
Well, all of my kids are special, and have their own strengths and talents. But this isn't about them this time.
The birth of that boy was the beginning of something special for our family.
First of all, the day he was born, was the last time he was in a hurry. As his Brother has said, "Tom has made a science out of taking it easy". He is a 'people' person. He has always been the 'oldest' member of our family. When growing up, if we were at a gathering of some kind, he would be with the adults. If there is some kind of family get together, He will be there. He is talented as an athelete, musician, golfer, jet ski pilot, fisherman, tractor trailer driver, auto body technician, combine operator, farmer, and on and on. But he isn't consumed by any one thing. (with the exception of his girlfriend possibly)
In these past twenty four years, I've never seen him really mad. (He has however, scolded me about getting mad) I think, more than anything, Tom enjoys life, and refuses to be hurried through it. So yesterday, he worked, played golf, went out to dinner with his girlfriend, brother and family. All, normal, everyday activities. All done in order without hurrying, quietly, and with a smile. I wouldn't have expected less. Life is to be enjoyed, 'Right Tom'?? Happy Birthday! I love you.