What are the odds of a newborn surviving, who in 1944 was birthed at home, turned blue and stopped breathing less than 15 minutes after entering this world? Would you say a million-to-one? Maybe a trillion-to-one? Whatever the true figure is, after 69 years today I am still alive and kicking. Happy birthday to me!
On Saturday, September 9, 1944 my mother went upstairs to clean up before dinner. My baba was making steak and potatoes which happened to be mom's favorite meal. Unfortunately she would never get to enjoy that savory dish.
Her water broke and I was coming fast. My dad ran to the neighbors who just happened to be doctors. Lady Dr. Stimetz, I never knew her first name, answered the call. I'm told she delivered me at around 6:30p.m.
Once the cord was cut, the good doctor handed me to my baba and directed her to wash away all the afterbirth from my body. Baba dutifully took me downstairs, filled her favorite mixing bowl with warm water and began the cleansing process.
Baba noticed that I sounded somewhat congested. She went to the pantry and secured a jar of vaporizer. She then rubbed an ample amount into and under my nostrils. I immediately turned blue and stopped breathing. Frantically she screamed for help. Dr. Stimetz was still attending to my mom, but upon hearing the urgency in baba's voice she ran to assist. She wiped the gunk from my nose and administered CPR. Within a minute or two my color returned to a healthy pink and my breathing became normal. Against all odds, Dr. Stimetz, the heroine, saved my 15 minute old life!
Ever since that day I've been a survivor. I'm also a risk-taker. I guess you might even call me a gambler. I personally think these traits are blessings that have served me well throughout my life. If it hadn't been for my baba's well-intentioned mistake, I might have never become the person I am today. Actually, I might not have become the person I am today BECAUSE of her well-intentioned mistake. And as far as Lady Dr. Stimetz, well without her intervention, I know I would NOT HAVE BECOME AT ALL!
Against all odds, HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ME!