Age: 16 Years Old
Day of Challenge: Day Nine
Date: 15 August 2005
My junior year of high school started with a bet. My family kept taking bets on exactly when my sister would give birth. She was scheduled to give birth in mid to late August. As July turned into August, all signs pointed to an early delivery. Everyone in my family selected a date in Early August. The thing is, nothing changed. Although there had been some signs of a possible early delivery…the days just kept passing by.
Before I knew it, I was starting up my junior year at Union Colony Preparatory School. It was supposed to be the hardest year of the high school experience (and was). The thing is, I expected to be an uncle by the time classes started. In the first week, it was difficult to adjust back to being in school knowing full well that I would be pulled out for a very exciting moment at any time. I only have the one sibling. I knew full well how big of a moment this birth would be.
At the end of the first week of classes, I was sitting in my new morning history class. Cheri—our school receptionist—came in and handed me a note. She said it was from my mother. It said: “Krista is in labor.” That was it. I asked Cheri if I had been excused for the day. She said no. I was shocked and slightly angry. My sister was in labor and I had a full day of classes ahead of me. Why hadn’t I been excused?
As the day passed by, my mother and I texted. She explained that this would be a somewhat long labor. It was a hard day to focus nonetheless. I can only thank the fact that it happened early on in the semester. After school, I met up with my parents. We went to and from the hospital at least twice. She was in labor but nothing was happening. We were all waiting for something. I just didn’t know what to do. How do you wait for hours and hours for something so important?
We went back to the hospital at 9 or 10 that night to see how she was doing. She didn’t seem very happy. Since the day was almost over, we started remarking on how unfortunate it was that the new baby girl wouldn’t be born on this day—August 15th. In our family, this day means a lot. It is the wedding date of my father’s parents…and the wedding date of my parents. How great it would have been for the next generation to share the date. Half an hour later, Krista was brought in for an emergency C-Section.
Kyra was born just before 11:00p on August 15th. I remember sitting in the waiting room during the hour we waited. I sat there with both my parents. We were the only ones in the hallway next to the delivery area. Behind us were three portraits of the three set triplets that had been delivered at the hospital. We waited…and waited. Then, I heard a baby girl crying from the delivery area.
We were allowed into the room a bit before midnight. Krista was out of it because of the drugs they gave her for the C-Section. Brian was holding his new baby girl. My parents each got a turn to hold her. Then, slightly before midnight, I got to hold her. There is a picture of this somewhere that I will have to find. I’m sitting in a chair with my shoulder-length hair…holding this six pound baby in my arms. It was a strange moment. She was my first niece. In the year or two that followed—as my sister got engaged and married—I came to love Kyra’s two older half-sisters as my own. This was the start of my nuclear family’s expansion. It was an amazing moment.