This is an open birthday card for my Daughter, Yumi Kovic. Her Birthday is celebrated today 24 years following her birth on December 12, 1991. I am proud to share with you all of the joy that I feel for my eldest daughter. (Grace, [my other daughter] don’t be jealous, honey. I’ve got some stories about your birth to tell everyone about on your next birthday next year. Be patient.)
Happy Birthday, honey. I’ll never forget the first time I set eyes on you. I hope you aren’t tired hearing this story but on the day you were born a big snow storm was on its way to Kingston, NY where you and your mother were living at the time. She was 2 weeks overdue and very concerned. We went to the hospital. The nurses did a sonogram and moments later your heart rate plummeted.
Code blue went out; immediately Mommy was rushed out of the room where they were examining her and taken into the operating room where they performed a C-section to save your life. Mommy and I had taken the La-Maz classes for a few weeks and I was ready to be her coach all the way through. Things happened so fast that I was left breathless. A lot of good those breathing exercises did.
All hell broke loose but one of the nurses took me, a dazed father-to-be, by the hand to be by your mother’s side in the operating room. I saw you come out but all I could do was watch at the foot of the operating table. Then, for some stupid reason I was told I had to leave by some bossy nurse to whom I pleaded to stay so that I could hold you in my arms after being cleaned up. She just said “There’s the door, Mr. Kovic; just go!”
So, reluctantly I went out into the hall where I waited, pissed off but I waited patiently while I thumbed through some old National Geographic magazine with the cover story about “The Wonders Of A Human Birth”. I shoved the magazine into the trashcan nearby.
Then, through the double doors came a nurse all gowned up carrying something in her arms. She asked of me, “Are you Mr. Kovic?” “Yes,” I said with a surprised look on my face. “Congratulations, Mr. Kovic, this is your daughter……?” A quizzical look came upon her face due to the fact that there was no name on her wrist bracelet. “We haven’t named her yet.”
Mommy and I were still in the midst of deciding on your name, Yumi, but we hadn’t finalized it yet and this all happened so fast. But she placed you in my arms as I beheld the most beautiful thing I had ever seen in my life, YOU. I was filled with unimaginable joy as I looked at you and checked to see if everything was all right. You were more than “all right”. You are perfect.
There are so many other stories to tell you, darling and I will. You added an extra-special dimension to enrich the lives of your mother and me. It was challenging at times given the events that were going on at the time and you kept both of us up on those long nights and there were so many episodes of Barney that I watched with you until I learned to love that lovable plump dumb-sounding dinosaur and Baby Bop but I wouldn’t ever trade any of that for the world.
I love you so much, Yumi and I will always be here for you if you need me. You name it and I’ll move mountains to help you, honey. Happy 24th birthday.