My mother spent a month in St. Josephs hospital in Mankato before I was born. She’d had diabetes since she was fourteen years old and her pregnancy with me hadn’t gone so well. She was 28 years old and I would be her first child. Mom and dad married in 1951 and for 6 years tried to have a baby and couldn’t. So when I came along I was a pretty big deal. She finally became a mother on Tuesday, the 24th of September 1957.
My birth and mom’s pregnancy will always be ingrained in my mind thanks to my Grandma Dorothy telling me the story every year on my birthday. Grandma made it a point every year to make sure I knew what her daughter went through to have me. I even got details of the birth from grandma and mom later in life, which I will spare you in this blog. Mom went on to have four more children and God blessed her with a wonderful family that she always prayed for.
According to grandma, mom was so sick during the nine months she carried me. She was in and out of the hospital. Her diabetes was a problem during her pregnancy. She was close to dying giving birth to me. When I became an adult, my grandmother always made me an amazing pan of caramel rolls when it was my birthday. It was always my favorite birthday present. A few days before my birthday Grandma would call me to remind me to come over and get my caramel rolls. As she did every year on the phone, she started telling me how much mom suffered during her pregnancy with me. When I went to pick up my caramel rolls, she would repeat the story to me again.
After I left grandma’s house one day after picking up my homemade fresh caramel rolls, I thought I would do something different on my birthday that year. I must of been forty years old. So on my birthday I bought my mom a dozen red roses and wrote a long letter of appreciation for giving me life. I thanked her for what she went through while pregnant with me and told her I loved her. I gave her the roses and remember her reading the letter at her kitchen table and crying. We hugged each other and it was one of the best moments I ever had with my mom.
All my mom ever wanted was to be a mother and for the first six years of her marriage it didn’t happen. She told me how painful it was for her and dad. Most of her friends were having babies and she wanted a baby so bad. She always told me I was a special baby. Growing up mom worked so hard at home. Every day we would sit at the supper table as a family and have a feast! She loved to cook and cooked full meals, mashed potatoes, meat, vegetables, and homemade bread. She was a great cook and even won a cooking award in New Ulm. She never missed any of my games in high school. She was super mom!
She was all about family. I miss her a lot. So if your mother is still alive and you’re able to be with her today give her a big hug and tell her thanks for giving you life. If you want to bring along a dozen roses I’m sure she would like that.