Today is Daughter's birthday, which means that once again I tell THE STORY.
I had a good relationship with my obstetrician, Marion Stahl, and he teased me a little as he sliced me open, telling the nurse to turn the page in the instruction manual, pretending a sponge had been lost, and singing--"If I were a rich man . . ." from Fiddler on the Roof. Of course, I couldn't resist singing back, "May she be like Ruth and like Esther. May she be deserving of fame . . . ."
"If that's what you sound like with your diaphragm cut, I'd sure like to hear you when you're all sewed up," a male voice commented. So my daughter was born to song.
A minute later everyone was quiet and I heard what sounded like a cat mewing. "Is that the baby?" I asked.
"You have a little girl," the doctor announced. "And she's got red hair. Just a minute and we'll clean her up and bring her to you."
"You don't have to clean her up," I said. Actually, I was curious about what vernix, the cheesy stuff babies are covered with at birth, looked like.
So they brought my cheesy darling to me, my 9 lb., 9 oz. baby girl with the red hair, blue eyes, and white, white skin. She was the most beautiful baby I'd ever seen.
And today, on her birthday, she's even more beautiful. And she sings much better than her mother, diaphragm cut or not.