You've heard my version of Bennett's birth, it's time to hear Rocky's side of the story. So, we're flashing back fifty-two whole weeks.
October 29, 2010 was supposed to be a big day in my career. I was scheduled to present my first oral argument at the Richmond City Circuit Court, and as a person that had devoted the last five years of his life preparing to be a litigator from law school, to clerkship, to junior associate grunt, this was my moment to introduce myself to the bar. Needless to say, it was going to be a big day. And it was, but for an entirely different reason.
By October 28, 2010, Allison was pretty much done with the whole pregnancy-thing. She was tired, in pain and could not get comfortable regardless of what she tried. She fretted waiting two more weeks for the due date and seriously contemplated bribing our doctor to induce her. On that night, enduring yet another uncomfortable day, she made an impassioned plea to B.B. to make his appearance known. What did I do after witnessing my wife making such plea – I laughed at her and joked that she was going to deliver late and our baby was going to weigh over ten pounds. She did not find my joke funny.
Well as the night wore on, we got ready for bed and everything seemed fine. What I did not know, is that after Allison’s plea, B.B. apparently responded. Allison, at the time, was not sure if it was labor or another phantom contraction as she had been having fake ones for weeks. So she ignored it and went to bed. But she couldn’t sleep and eventually went downstairs. Four hours later, I went to the basement to check on her and found that she was pacing around and breathing pretty heavily. Odd, I thought to myself. Nonetheless, for whatever reason, Allison assured me that it was nothing big and that I should go back to bed. I happily listened to my wife and did.
I couldn’t sleep now. Her pacing and general facial expressions (I will spare you the details) led me to believe that this was more serious than false labor. So I went back downstairs and convinced her that she couldn’t take it anymore we should go to the hospital. Allison continued to pace and her breathing well sounded more like panting at this point. I remember poor Atticus kept walking right under Allison’s feet. He was concerned, you could tell, but my wife wanted no part of our furry companion.
Realizing that being in Richmond by 9 am was highly unlikely given the current state of affairs, I then began to frantically email every person under the sun letting them know that I could not make my court appearance. Surely by 3:30 am someone’s blackberry would be on and ringing.
At around 4:30 am, Allison called her mom and told her that we were going to the hospital. Kerry went straight to the airport and jumped on a flight right then from Nashville to DC in hopes of being with her daughter. When we got the hospital, I dropped Allison off and forgot about the emergency parking and drove to the parking lot, leaving my pregnant wife experiencing contractions in the waiting room alone. Smooth, I know.
We were one of the first couples there and Allison was tended to immediately. The doctor kindly informed her that she was in fact in labor and that it would not be long until it was show time. Amazingly, Kerry touched down an hour or so later and was able to catch a quick cab to the hospital.
Only a couple hours later at 11:26 am, B.B. entered this world. Our prayers were answered with the first cry he exhaled. He was simply a beautiful, healthy baby boy. As soon as he was born, Allison scooped him up and held on her chest. This is still one of my most vivid memories from the whole day and I luckily captured the second that B.B. looked up at his mom.
I asked Allison if she wanted to introduce B.B. to his grandmother. We were pretty certain Bennett was going to be his name but Allison had not yet firmly committed espousing that she needed to meet him first. I was a little concerned that due to her sleep deprived nature that she may be apt to blurt out some oddball name such as D’Rocklan, which was a favorite among my friends. Luckily, she kept her wits and introduced Bennett to his grandma Kerry. Later that day, my mom arrived and her met her grandson. Tears of joy for everyone it seemed.
October 29, 2010 was supposed to be a major day for me in my career as a lawyer – my first oral argument. It turned out that day was a major day in my life – the day I became a father. Every night since, I go to bed thanking God for the blessing of my family and for Bennett. This past year has been amazing to watch him grow but has also taught us how fleeting time is. In just one year, he has gone from our little baby to our little boy. He now wants to walk on his own, feed himself and dictate when he goes to bed.
Having Bennett in our lives has pretty much reframed our outlook on life. We left DC to come back to Tennessee, leaving truly amazing friends and great jobs, so Bennett could be closer to babysitters, err family. Every time we talk about the future now, we are inevitably discussing Bennett’s future, his college fund, and do we need to start saving for braces because he got his dad’s teeth. He is pretty much our world now and I do not think we would have it any other way. We don’t often hear anymore that someone was a God-send or our prayers were answered. Well Bennett is toddling proof that our prayers were indeed answered.
Happy Birthday Bennett! We love you very much.