one thing that bill has always held fast to
is the idea that when you come out of surgery
making a joke is the best way to let people know you're okay.
so when i was wheeled into the labor and delivery room for post-op recovery
i looked at him and said...
me: i think we may need to reconsider natural, drug-free childbirth. this epidural is awesome...i'm not feeling a thing!
he smiled at me. he knew i was okay.
as the young labor and delivery nurses rolled me onto the bed
they commented on my tattoo.
i had completely forgotten about it
as tends to happen when ink is out of sight.
but it had me seeking out bill's initials on my right ankle
wondering if the accident had stripped my leg of his name.
but they were there
the room was dimly lit.
the sun had gone down for the day.
it didn't strike me at the time
but looking back i realize that it had been over ten hours since the time of the accident to the time i was finally sent to recovery.
my dad stood at my head
me: hi daddy.
daddy: (kiss on the forehead). hi baby.
the night wore a veil of sobriety.
my parents quietly slipped out.
they would take care of the dogs.
my sister threw her arms around my neck.
she would be back in the morning.
bill stood with the nurses
learning about each monitor
each flickering light
each bag of fluid.
we spent a good majority of the evening staring on the erector set fixated on my leg
and the new curvature of my shin.
we chatted with the labor and delivery nurse.
flipped through channels
checked to see if we'd made the news.
i tried to eat
but was unsuccessful.
bill slipped into some scrubs
and finally peeled off his now infamous 'lucky' fleece
crusted with dirt
the night turned quiet.
but we didn't sleep.
we just sat
and listened to the quiet
that came from deep within me.